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Southend maintains its Purple Flag

Published Thursday, 19th February 2015

Picture of purple flag logo

Southend-on-Sea’s ‘diverse and vibrant’ nightlife has been flagged as among the best in the UK and Ireland by a prestigious award scheme for the night-time economy.

The Borough was first awarded the ‘Purple Flag’ in 2012 in recognition of the outstanding services on offer contributing to a vibrant and diverse night-time economy. Following a recent assessment, the Borough has held onto the accolade.

Purple Flag is a town and city centre award – similar to the Blue Flag for beaches – which aims to raise the standard and broaden the appeal of town and city centres between the hours of 18:00-06:00. Since 2007, the programme has awarded Purple Flag status to 54 towns and cities in the UK and Ireland.

Purple Flag accredited towns have all reported a consistent increase in footfall and decrease in crime within the night time economy. The scheme is managed by the Association of Town Centre Managers working alongside the Purple Flag Advisory Committee – a partnership of key stakeholder groups backed by Government, police and businesses, as well as sponsors Diageo Great Britain.

Simon Ford, Group Manager for Community Safety, and chair of the Purple Flag Working Group, said: “Maintaining the purple flag is excellent news for Southend’s residents, businesses and visitors. Our borough has a vibrant and eclectic night-time economy, from night clubs, high-quality eateries, music venues and small independent bars. We should be proud of our offer and the safe and friendly environment that it is provided in. The Purple Flag recognises and sends out a clear message that our night-time economy is open for business.”

Philip Kolvin QC, Chairman of the Purple Flag Board, said: “The continual expansion of the Purple Flag initiative is a recognition of the important challenge to create a balanced, safe and vibrant night time offering. Each city demonstrates how organisations working together with the public produces positive, innovative outcomes for the night time economy. With over 50 Purple Flag centres now across the UK and Ireland, it is inspiring to witness the ongoing diversity of efforts from all accredited towns, old and new alike.”