Canterbury Bid

Purple Flag (Evening & Night Time Economy)

The BID supports initiatives to improve the operation of the evening and night time economy and proudly flies the Purple Flag.

The evening and night time economy refers to business that operate between 5pm and 5am and involves a wide range of businesses and a diverse group of customers. These initiatives are developed in association with those operating businesses at these times, with the Police, City Council and District Watch, with the college and universities and their student representatives and with the resident community.

Purple Flag is an accreditation process similar to Green Flag Award for parks and Blue Flag for beaches. It leads to Purple Flag status for town centres that meet or surpass the standards of excellence in managing the evening and night-time economy. The Purple flag accreditation scheme is run by the Association of Town and City Management (ATCM). Click here to see the Purple Flag Locations Map. Canterbury BID has taken over the management of the Purple Flag accreditation for the city centre.

Canterbury has been accredited with the Purple Flag award for a great night out every year since 2011 and after our last assessment, the judges said: “The panel would like to congratulate you in particular as it really shows through on the submission and assessment at just how good a place Canterbury is with their NTE.” 

How is Purple Flag judged?
Purple Flag covers five broad themes that are key to developing and managing successful centres at night. It captures the rounded experience that people want from their town/city centres at night.

  • Wellbeing – How safety issues are addressed, regulations that are in place and the perceptions of local people.
  • Movement – How transport works, parking, pedestrian routes. how crowds are managed and information available.
  • Policy – How local data is collected and used, coordination between local partners and the inclusion of the local community.
  • Appeal – The choice of different activities on offer including a wide range of bars, restaurants, shops and public buildings.
  • Place – The layout of the city centre looking at its design, identity and diversity of local activities.

The benefits of Purple Flag:

  • a raised profile and improved public image;
  • increased visitors;
  • increased expenditure;
  • lower crime and anti-social behaviour;
  • a more successful mixed-use economy.
  • The Purple Flag mark is not only a sign of quality; it’s also a useful marketing tool that promotes confidence in the Canterbury city centre brand.

While the Purple Flag is not a well-known consumer facing brand, it is increasingly important for a whole range of organisations and especially for families when they make a decision about where to choose for higher education.

Purple Flag Committee

Canterbury BID brings together members of the following organisations to ensure that ENTE safety is addresses in a joined up manner. Partnership working ensures that our city remains an exemplary city in the Purple Flag portfolio:

  • Canterbury City Council
  • Kent Police
  • Street Pastors
  • Kent Fire & Rescue Service
  • Alliance of Canterbury Residents’ Associations (ACRA)
  • Street Marshalls
  • University of Kent
  • Canterbury Christ Church University
  • Kent Union
  • Canterbury Christ Church Union
  • Local businesses: The Marlowe Theatre, Curzon Cinema, Club Chemistry, Tokyo Tea Rooms, The Ballroom, Student Republic, Pride Canterbury, McDonalds

Canterbury BID has organised conferences for our Evening & Night Time Economy businesses:

Presentations from the 2018 conference: ENTE 2018 presentations.
Presentations from the 2017 conference: ENTE 2017 presentations.
Presentations from the 2016 conference: ENTE 2016 presentations.

street pastors Street Pastors

Canterbury Street Pastors are based on a national scheme that launched in 2003 and continues to grow in the UK and across the world. Street Pastors are trained volunteers from local churches who care about their community and offer support, a friendly presence and practical help to people they encounter in the night time from 10pm – 4am on Fridays and Saturdays in the city centre: bottles of water, space blankets and flip flops are regularly handed out to those who need them and the Pastors also collect bottles and glasses they find discarded as they patrol the city’s streets.

Canterbury Connected Business Improvement District supports the Street Pastors with an annual donation of £500, around 10% of their annual running costs. The evening and night time economy is really important for the city, in terms of jobs and the city’s wider appeal. Having support for people during that time to make sure that everyone has a great night and gets home safely is all part of that. When you see how the Street Pastors are welcomed wherever they go in the city, whatever the circumstances, you realise what a great job they do and how lucky we are to have them!”

To find out more and read some of the testimonials the pastors receive please click here.