Belfast's night-time economy recognised with purple flag status

The steering group behind the purple flag project, including Belfast Chamber's president Rajesh Rana and chief executive Simon Hamilton; along with and Belfast’s three BID managers, Chris McCracken, Gareth Neill and Clare Maguire

BELFAST city centre has been awarded purple flag status.

The accreditation recognises towns and cities with well-run night-time economies.

The city's three business improvement districts, Belfast One, Destination CQ and Linen Quarter BID, provided funding for the 12-month application process. The assessment was conducted during December.

A series of business organisations and government bodies were also involved in the project.

Chris McCracken, representing the Linen Quarter team, said: “This award champions Belfast's diverse and vibrant night-time economy, with a clean and safe environment, great restaurants, bars and clubs, good transport links and a unique sense of place. Winning the award shows what different partners can do when they come together to achieve a common goal.”

Gareth Neill of Destination Cathedral Quarter said Belfast has more to offer than ever before.

“Our richly developed cultural scene including the MAC, Black Box, Oh Yeah Music Centre, Grand Opera House, and Ulster Hall, showcases an outstanding year-round program of events. Securing Purple Flag is a wonderful achievement and cause for celebration by the whole city,” he added.

Clare Maguire from Belfast One, said: “Receiving Purple Flag accreditation for Belfast will no doubt go some way to reassuring visitors that we are committed to ensuring that they can come and paint the town purple safely in our thriving bars, hotels, restaurants, cinemas and premier retail stores.

“This collaboration is just one example of how positive partnerships can achieve great recognition as we collectively strive to make Belfast the number one destination for a safe evening out.”

To mark the award the three BIDs are set to fund a new marketing campaign, dubbed ‘alive after five'.

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