Bristol awarded prestigious Purple Flag accreditation

November 7, 2023

Bristol’s night-time economy is once again celebrating after receiving the coveted Purple Flag award in 2023, marking the 13th year in a row the city has been recognised with this accolade.

Purple Flag is an international accreditation awarded to cities that surpass excellence in managing their evening and night-time economies. Similar to the Blue Flag for beaches, the Purple Flag aims to raise the standard and broaden the appeal of town and city centres between the hours of 5pm and 5am.The annual Purple Flag award, made by the national Association of Town Centre Management, assesses qualities such as safety, diversity, vibrancy, accessibility, cleanliness and partnership working, and it gives positive reassurance to those people planning a night out in the city.Bristol was recognised for its vibrant and diverse mix of dining, entertainment and culture on offer while promoting the safety and wellbeing of visitors and local residents.Councillor Craig Cheney, Deputy Mayor and Cabinet member for Finance, Governance and Performance, said:  “Bristol is a destination city, with people visiting from all over the world to enjoy the diverse night life and venues. Receiving this award is a great accolade to Bristol and the hard work of the council and its partners. Promoting a vibrant and safe evening and night time entertainment offer is important for celebrating Bristol’s international reputation and the businesses and organisations at the heart of Bristol’s culture."Carly Heath, Bristol’s Night-Time Economy Advisor, said:

“It’s great that Bristol has received the Purple Flag award again this year. It comes in recognition of our continued hard work towards creating a more vibrant, welcoming, diverse and safer nightlife. Through Bristol Nights we have developed a lot of awareness and education campaigns including harm reduction, drink spiking and anti-sexual harassment. We strive to make Bristol’s night-time economy stronger, safer, more inclusive and better connected so people can enjoy a great night out.”

Bristol City Council and Bristol City Centre BID worked in partnership to manage the accreditation process through a comprehensive set of standards, ensuring that different aspects of the city’s offering were presented to the judges.Vicky Lee, Head of Bristol City Centre BID, said:

“We work closely with the council and our partners in the night-time economy to make sure our work supports and promotes the city, and allows people to fully enjoy what the city has to offer in the evening and after dark. Achieving the Purple Flag recognition is a huge benefit for businesses and recognises our vibrant and diverse mix of dining, entertainment and culture while promoting the safety and wellbeing of visitors and local residents. We look forward to continuing our work, putting on events and promoting the city on both national and international stages, to help attract people to visit, study, work and live here.”

City partners who help manage the night-time economy include Bristol City Centre BID, Cabot Circus BID, Bristol Nights, Bristol Waste, Night Watch, Bristol Women’s Voice and Avon and Somerset Police.Highlights from Bristol’s submission include best practice on safety and harm reduction through the work of Bristol Nights, the diverse culture and events programme with successes like Bristol Light Festival, and schemes including the Clean Streets Strategy which help create a welcoming environment.The evening and night-time economy directly or indirectly supports the employment of over 116,000 people in Bristol, representing 38% of the city’s overall jobs, and includes 1,099 premises in Bristol.