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Chester flying the Purple Flag in 2023



Chester has retained a prestigious accreditation in recognition of its safe night-time economy.

The city was first awarded the Purple Flag status since 2018, and as such is recognised for providing a vibrant and diverse mix of dining, entertainment and culture while promoting the safety and wellbeing.

Highlights from Chester’s submission this year included its varied range of events, the positive impact of increased pedestrianisation and the Once A Desert installation at Chester Cathedral.

Cllr Karen Shore, cabinet member for environment, highways and strategic transport at Cheshire West and Chester Council, said: “Chester continues to attract attention across the country.

“The latest survey has placed Chester among the top 10 most fashion-forward cities in the UK.

“Footfall in Chester showed an 18.5% increase in 2022 with over 16 million visitors recorded. 

“Whilst footfall across the whole country still hasn’t recovered from the pandemic, the counters at Northgate showed a 7% increase in footfall in December compared with 2019 figures thanks to Storyhouse, the new Chester Market and the annual Christmas market.”

She added: “We have retained Purple Flag thanks to the many partners, teams, and businesses working together to keep our city safe and welcoming.”

The Purple Flag programme was developed following the Civic Trust’s “Night Vision” report in 2006 and is now managed by the Association of Town & City Management.

Carl Crichlow, CEO of Chester BID, said: “Chester’s night-time economy continues to go from strength to strength with new bars and restaurants opening and expanding, therefore it’s important that the city is safe and well managed to ensure a positive customer experience.

“To secure Purple Flag status for a fifth year is a huge achievement and testament to the hard work of all the partners involved.”

Keeping the city safe is a partnership between Cheshire West and Chester Council, Chester BID, Cheshire Police, Chester Against Business Crime, Pubwatch, the University of Chester, Chester Residents’ Associations Group, and others.



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