Purple Flag is an accreditation process similar to the Green Flag award for parks and the Blue Flag for beaches. It leads to Purple Flag status for town & city centres that meet or surpass the standards of excellence in managing the evening and night time economy (ENTE). It is a positive initiative that indicates an entertaining, diverse, safe and enjoyable night out throughout the UK and Ireland and now being taken up internationally.
Town and City centres that achieve a Purple Flag will be those that are safe, diverse, vibrant, appealing, well-managed and offer a positive experience to consumers. Purple Flag is the only UK scheme focused on the ENTE that sees it in the round; both the negative impacts that need to be addressed and the potential for economic growth, increased conviviality and community enhancement.
Accreditation is an annual process and Cheltenham has held Purple Flag status for seven consecutive years since 2016 with the town just learning that following an assessment visit by external assessors at the end of March 2023, we have again been assessed as having a safe, vibrant and welcoming evening and night-time economy. The town will receive its latest award at a ceremony in Leicester in June.
The designated Purple Flag area comprises the main trading and hospitality area of the town centre and encompasses the whole of the Cheltenham BID area.
Applicants to the scheme are assessed under five core themes:
- Wellbeing – (welcoming , clean and safe)
- Movement – (a secure pattern of arrival, circulation and departure)
- A broad appeal – (a vibrant choice and a rich mix)
- Place – (a stimulating destination and a vital place)
- Policy envelope – (a clear aim and common purpose)
In this latest assessment the assessors rated Cheltenham as above standard in all of the core themes with the exception of wellbeing where we were assessed as outstanding/excellent.
The town received top marks for its safety, care and regulation, its wide choice of food and dining venues, its arts and cultural scene, attractive public places and streets, for the appropriate use of natural and built features to reinforce appeal, and having a sound statistical base for policy making and action.
The assessment panel also commended the work of Cheltenham Guardians who Cheltenham BID are very proud to support in their amazing contribution to the town and the Guardians Night-care hub.
The working party behind Cheltenham’s Purple Flag applications comprises representatives from the Borough Council, the police, Cheltenham BID, the licensed trade, Cheltenham Guardians, Cheltenham Street Pastors and the University of Gloucestershire Students’ Union.