UK City of Culture – does the hype live up to reality?

Following on from the perceived and touted successes of European Cities of Culture (EuCoC) such as Liverpool and Glasgow (2017, Boland, Mullan et al. 2018) the UK Government looked to replicate this through a UK organised simulacrum with the hope that the reported benefits of the supranational events would be replicated on a national event evidencing the trend of cultural “neoliberalisation” (McGuigan 2010)where culture is mobilised for alleged economic benefits (Boland, et al., 2018) (DCMS, 2017). The benefits posited included significant economic and social impact (Philip Boland, 2018) (Derry City and Strabane District Council, 2018) and demonstrate the development of a common narrative where culture is used as a tool of economic development (Van der Borg & Russo, 2005) (Cunningham, et al., 2018). This was crystallised in Department for Culture, Media and Sport’s (DCMS) mapping document: “The Creative Industries” (CITF, 1998) under the New Labour government of the time. Although the actual measurable benefits have been branded as “dubious” by some highly sceptical critics of neoliberal cultural regeneration such as Jim McGuigan (2010) and other commentators such as Beatriz Garcia (2004,2005) who also cast doubt on some of the claims made for the potential impacts claimed of City of Culture (CoC).  Some of the impacts promised for Uk City of Culture (UKCoC) were in fact, highly measurable, such as the forecast £100 million of media coverage and £300 million of capital investment (Derry City and Strabane District Council, 2018) and increases in visitors by 563,000 and increases in Hotel occupancy (Derry City and Strabane District Council, 2018) (ILEX, 2014) great promises were also made regarding halting the “brain drain” and in improving retention of young people, although no quantifiable targets were given in UKCoC documents (Derry City Council , 2010) (Derry City Council, 2013a) (Derry City Council, 2013b) (Boland, et al., 2018)

With the object of providing some insight into the direct economic impact of UKCoC, key datasets were identified, and relevant information extracted for analysis.  Sources included Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (NISRA, 2017) UK Office for National Statistics (Office for National Statistics, 2020) Derry City and Strabane District Counci (Derry City Council, 2013a) (Derry City and Strabane District Council, 2018)l, ILEX (Derry development Company), Hull City Council (Hull City Council a, 2020) (Hull City Council b, 2020) and Humber LEP (Hull City Council b, 2020) and Centre for Cities (Centre for Cities, 2020).  It should be noted that where possible data has been sourced from organisations external to the UKCoC organisers, who may have a perceived bias to reporting only the positive facts (Hankinson, 2004) (Harvey, 2012).  This research is planned to contribute as part of a dissertation study of the impact, value and opportunity cost of UKCoC and its efficacy as a tool of urban regeneration and place-making.

There is an interesting contrast between the promises made for the UK’s City of Culture  (UKCoC) 2013Derry/Londonderry and those made for Hull’s bid for 2017 where some of the rhetoric – especially regarding measurable economic impact – was scaled down or readjusted to be measured in “soft” impacts rather than “hard“ impacts.  These “soft” impacts are more challenging to measure compared with the the easier to quantify “hard“ impacts such as employment levels  and can include such things as tourist expenditure, improvement in topophilia or reopening of formerly unused buildings for cultural activities and other, more intangible or indirect benefits  (Van der Borg & Russo, 2005). It might be overly cynical to assume a policy of deliberate obfuscation by UKCoC organisers and stakeholders – who were heavily invested in demonstrating UKCoC as a success – however a comparative analysis of the initial bid documents and subsequent post event impact reports by both Derry/Londonderry and Hull UKCoC organisers – ostensibly the local government authorities – show a disconnect between the promised “hard impacts” and the reporting of the actuality which often measures different indices and creates a difficulty for accurate quantifiable data analysis that would allow conclusions to be drawn as to whether the hyperbole was matched by reality – especially in terms of economic impact (Boland, et al., 2016) (Garcia, 2005). This is particularly noticeable in the Derry/Londonderry case where the post event evaluation report claims improvements but often don’t give baselines (Derry City Council , 2010) (Derry City and Strabane District Council, 2018).

One criticism of the seductive rhetoric of of UKCoC and European CoC is the appropriation of successes that are unrelated to the CoC bid (Connolly, 2013) (García, 2004).  The infographic attempts to represent this utilising the specific example of job levels, which were promised to increase through the efforts of Derry/Londonderry UKCoC (Derry City Council , 2010)and Hull UKCoC (Hull UK City of Culture 2017 Ltd, 2015). As shown in the infographic employment rate improved in the Hull NUTS3 area did have a faster rate of improvement c.f. national employment rates.  However the infographic demonstrates the importance of the port sector to employment in the city and that preceding and over the period of Hull UKCoC, Hull had become the base for supporting the world’s largest offshore windfarm with Siemens alone creating 1000 new jobs (Hull City Council a, 2020).This demonstrates the complexity of measuring the any proposed causal relationship for the longer term economic impact of UKCoC  (Liu, 2014) (Li & McCabe, 2012)

The long term legacy of the UKCoC programme was expected to include: culturally led regeneration, youth retention, youth employment, overall employment, inward investment both direct and indirect, increase in tourism, increase in media coverage and in the case of Hull a drop in retail vacancies (Derry City Council, 2013b) (Hull UK City of Culture 2017 Ltd, 2015)

Infographics can be used to explain an object, idea or process using clear illustrations in a way that unlocks the information being provided to give insights and clarity or present data in an interesting format that paints a narrative (Lankow, 2012) The attached infographic aims to present a critical analysis of some of the secondary data sources which represent the recorded impact of UKCoC and which challenge some of the existing narrative from organisers (Arts Council England, 2012) who almost consistently represent UKCoC as a driver for economic growth and job creation.  As such, rather than provide an holistic view of the impact of UKCoC, data sets chosen were those which emphasised the quantifiable impacts, especially, although not exclusively from an economic impact. The infographic exposes dichotomies between the hype and the reality of the impact of UkCoC and invites further analysis of the value proposition of UK CoC and whether it is ‘life and place changing’ or a ‘12 month party’? (Boland, et al., 2016), it further invites research into the opportunity cost of staging events such as UKCoC  as, if the wished for outcomes are – for example – a new cultural venue, more hotels, inward investment and more jobs, the question could be asked as to whether resource should be applied to achieving the outcomes directly rather than indirectly through a proposed and seemingly unproven “economic osmosis”. Indeed the major success in Hull in creating jobs seems unrelated to the CoC initiative but relate to port and wind farm activity (Hull City Council a, 2020) (Hull City Council b, 2020)  These questions become more pertinent as cities around the UK and the wider world face difficult decisions about the future shape of their place as the ongoing decline of traditional retail and the effects of Covid 19 impact the vitality of city centres and traditional uses. The homogenisation effects of assigning resource to, what appear to be, top down imported CoC “roadshows” could in fact act as a dampener on the creation of home grown local talent and the diminishing of indigenous, authentic and potential Foucauldian heterotopic assets within a city, that offer the promise of a more sustainable conduit to coherent communities, wealth and job creation. (Ntounis & Kanellopoulou, 2017)

References

Arts Council England, 2012. Measuring the Economic Benefits of Arts and Culture – practical Guidance on Research methodologies for Arts and Cultural Organisations. London: Arts Council England.

Bianchini, F. & Parkinson, M., 1993. Cultural policy and urban regeneration: the West European experience. Manchester: Manchester University Press.

Boland, P. B., Murtagh & Shirlow, P., 2016. Fashioning a City of Culture: ‘Life and Place Changing’ or ‘12 Month Party’?. International Journal of Cultural Policy.

Boland, P., Mullan, L. & Murtagh, B., 2018. Young people in a city of culture: ‘Ultimate beneficiaries’ or ‘Economic migrants’?. Journal of Youth Studies, 21(2), pp. 178-202.

Centre for Cities, 2020. Centre For Cities. [Online]
Available at: https://www.centreforcities.org/data-tool/su/506a2355
[Accessed 1 March 2020].

Connolly, M. G., 2013. The ‘Liverpool model(s)’: cultural planning, Liverpool and Capital of Culture 2008. International Journal of Cultural Policy , 19(2), pp. 162-181.

Cunningham, Isaac & Platt, L. C., 2018. Bidding for UK City of Culture: Challenges of delivering a bottom-up approach ’in place’ for a top-down strategy led scheme. Journal of Place Management and Development, Volume 11.

DCMS, 2017. UK City of Culture 2021: Bidding Guidance, London: Department for Culture, Media and Sport.

Derry City and Strabane District Council, 2018. Post Project Evaluation of City of Culture 2013, Derry City: Derry City and Strabane District Council.

Derry City Council , 2010. Cracking the Code. City of Culture 2013, Derry: Derry City Council .

Derry City Council, 2013a. Our Legacy Promise. Building on the Success of 2013, Derry: Derry City Council.

Derry City Council, 2013b. Legacy Plan 2013–2023, Derry: Derry City Council.

García, B., 2004. Cultural Policy and Urban Regeneration in Western European Cities: Lessons from Experience, Prospects for the Future. Local Economy, Volume 19(4), pp. 312-316.

Garcia, B., 2005. Deconstructing the City of Culture: The Long-term Cultural Legacies of Glasgow 1990. Urban Studie, 42 (5/6)(May), pp. 841-868.

Garcia, B., 2017. ‘‘If everyone says so …’ Press narratives and image change in major event host cities’. Urban Studies, Volume 54(14), p. 3178–3198.

Hankinson, G., 2004. Relational network brands: Towards a conceptual model of place brands. Journal of Vacation Marketing, 10(2), p. 109–121.

Harvey, D., 2012. Rebel Cities: From the Right to the City to the Urban Revolution. London: Verso.

Hull City Council a, 2020. Greenport Hull. [Online]
Available at: https://greenporthull.co.uk/jobs-training/job-roles-in-offshore-wind-1
[Accessed 20 March 2020].

Hull City Council b, 2020. InvestHull. [Online]
Available at: https://investhull.co.uk/sectors/port-logistics
[Accessed 12 March 2020].

Hull UK City of Culture 2017 Ltd, 2015. Hull UK City of Culture 2017 Strategic Business Plan 2015-2018, Hull: Hull UK City of Culture 2017 Ltd.

ILEX, 2014. Final Monitoring Report, Derry City of Culture, Derry/Londonderry: ILEX- .

Lankow, J., 2012. Infographics: the power of visual storytelling. s.l.:Wiley-Blackwell.

Li, S. & McCabe, S., 2012. Measuring the Socio‐Economic Legacies of Mega‐events: Concepts, Propositions and Indicators. International Journal of Tourism Research, pp. 388-402.

Liu, Y.-D., 2014. Socio-Cultural Impacts of Major Event: Evidence From the 2008 European Capital of Culture, Liverpool. Social Indicators Research, 115(3), pp. 983-998.

McGuigan, J., 2010. Neoliberalism, urban regeneration and cultural policy. In: Cultural analysis. London: SAGE Publications Ltd, pp. 117-128.

NISRA, 2017. People and Places, Local Government District Tourism Statistics (Northern Ireland), Belfast: Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (Tourism Statistics Branch).

Ntounis, N. & Kanellopoulou, E., 2017. Normalising jurisdictional heterotopias through place branding: The cases of Christiania and Metelkova. Environment and Planning A: Economy and Space, 49(10), pp. 2223-2240.

Office for National Statistics, 2020. Office for National Statistics. [Online]
Available at: https://www.ons.gov.uk/

Philip Boland, L. M. B. M., 2018. Young people in a city of culture: ‘Ultimate beneficiaries’ or ‘Economic migrants’?. Journal of Youth Studies, Volume 21:2, pp. 178-202.

Van der Borg, J. & Russo, A., 2005. The Impacts of Culture on, Rotterdam: European Institute for Comparative Urban Research (EURICUR) Erasmus University.

Background on Tourism Statistics produced for Gloucestershire

Below are some technical data on Sources and data for the Gloucestershire Tourism statistics including definitions
What is GBTS?

The Great Britain Tourism Survey is undertaken by TNS for VisitBritain and is based
on approximately 2,000 face-to-face per week throughout the year as part of TNS’s
RSGB Omnibus survey. It provides basic headline data on the volume and value of
domestic tourism, for England as a whole, for the English regions and for the
counties or unitary authorities.
What is IPS?
The International Passenger Survey is conducted by Office for National Statistics
and is based on face-to-face interviews with a sample of passengers travelling via
the principal airports, sea routes and the Channel Tunnel, together with visitors
crossing the land border into Northern Ireland. Around 0.2% of all travellers are
interviewed, with approximately 55,000 interviews of overseas visitors obtained
throughout the year. IPS provides headline figures, based on the county or unitary
authority, for the volume and value of overseas trips to the UK.
What is GBDVS?
In 2011, VisitEngland, Visit Scotland and Visit Wales commissioned a new survey to measure volume and value of tourism day visits in England. A number of earlier
surveys were conducted to measure this key sector of the economy, most recently in
2005, but it has been difficult to make comparisons over time due to changing
definitions and survey methodologies. In the new survey, interviewing is carried out
weekly, using an online methodology, and an annual sample of over 38,000
interviews with GB adults. The GB Day Visits Survey is an Official Statistic, and is produced in adherence with the Code of Practice for Official Statistics (2009).

What is the England Occupancy Survey?
As part of the EU Directive on Tourism Statistics adopted in 1995, the UK must
report regularly a specified range of statistics to Eurostat, the official statistical office
of the European Community. Included in these statistics are monthly occupancy
rates for UK serviced accommodation. The responsibility for providing this data lies
with the four National Tourist Boards. A sample of establishments are recruited to
the survey and asked to complete a data form each month, giving details of their
nightly room and bed occupancy. The data returned is processed and analysed to
produce monthly occupancy rates for the whole area and for specific types of
accommodation providers, size of establishment, location etc.
What is the ASHE?
The Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings (ASHE) provides information about the
levels, distribution and make-up of earnings and hours worked for employees in all
industries and occupations. The ASHE is a new survey developed to replace the
New Earnings Survey (NES) from 2004, including improvements to the coverage of
employees, imputation for item non-response and the weighting of earnings
estimates. The ASHE is based on a 1 per cent sample of employees in United Kingdom
What is the Labour Force Survey?
The LFS is a household panel survey of employment, continuous since 1992, with
results produced each quarter. It has a sample of approximately 60,000 households.
The LFS is the government’s largest continuous household survey and participation
in the survey is voluntary. LFS data are weighted to enable population estimates to
be produced. The weighting also attempts to compensate for differential non-response among different subgroups in the population. LFS is designed to provide information on the UK labour market that can be used to develop, manage and evaluate labour market policies. Aspects reported include rates of employment, unemployment and economic activity.
Terms used
What is a day visitor?
A day visitor is defined as someone making a day trip to and from home
for leisure purposes. The report excludes trips undertaken for business or study purposes. This report presents data on those who took trips of at least 3 hours duration on an irregular basis as defined by the GBDVS 2011. These are identified as tourism day
trips by the Departmentof Culture, Media and the Sport.
What is a staying visitor?
A visitor staying away from home for at least one night. Often measured in trips to
overcome the issue of one visitor making two or more trips to an area in a given
period.
What are VFR trips?
VFR trips are those where visiting friends or relatives is the main purpose for making
a trip. While many trips to visit friends and relatives will be accommodated in the
homes of these friends/relatives, some will make use of other forms of accommodation. It should also be noted that other forms of trip, for instance for holiday or business purposes, may stay with friends and relatives rather than in commercial ccommodation.
What is a multiplier?
Additional activity arising as a result of an initial direct input. Two forms of multiplier
are used in the model, namely indirect or supply multipliers, representing the additional economic activity arising from the purchase of supplies and services by businesses in direct receipt of tourism spending; and induced multipliers arising from additional economic activity supported by the expenditure of wages earned by employees in businesses supported directly or indirectly by tourism spending.
What are full time equivalent jobs (FTE’s)?
A FTE is defined as a job involving an input of 37 or more hours work per week for a
full year. For the purposes of the Model, the total number of FTE jobs is the number
of full time jobs that the number of actual jobs equates to. For example, 2 part time
all year round jobs, each covering 18.5 hours per week would equate to 1 FTE job.
What are actual jobs?
This figure gives the actual number of jobs, regardless of the amount of hours
worked or the seasonality of the employment. For example, 3 part time jobs and 2
full time jobs would equal 5 actual jobs. Many jobs are seasonal or part-time in
nature in the tourism sector, so an adjustment is made to calculate the actual
number of jobs from the number of FTEs. The adjustment is based on the findings of
surveys of tourism related businesses, and national employment surveys.
What are direct jobs
For the purposes of this model jobs have been categorised as direct, indirect or
induced. Direct jobs are those in businesses in receipt of visitor spending. For
example, jobs supported by visitor spending at a hotel would be direct jobs.
What are indirect jobs?
Indirect employment arises as a result of expenditure by businesses in direct receipt
of visitor expenditure on the purchase of goods and services for their businesses.
For example, some of the employment at a business supplying food and drink may
be supported through the supplies that the business sells to hotels (or any other
business in direct receipt of visitor expenditure).
What are induced jobs?
Induced jobs are those that are supported by the spending of wages by employees
in direct and indirect jobs. Such spending will be spread across a wide range of
service sectors.
What are total jobs?
Total jobs include those in tourism related businesses supported by tourist spending
and those indirectly arising or induced by spending across the service sector in
suppliers of goods and services.
Direct jobs + indirect jobs+ induced jobs = Total jobs
What is ‘other tourism spend’?
Apart from expenditure associated with the individual trips, some
forms of activity also involve ongoing expenditure on accommodation, for instance second home or boat maintenance, or result in additional spending by non-
visitors, for example friends and relatives with whom the tourist is staying. These other areas of expenditure are categorized as ‘other tourism spend’.

The Mathematical model

How does the model work?

The Cambridge Model is a computer-based model developed to calculate estimates
of the volume, value and economic impact of tourism on a County or District basis.
It draws on the combined experience of PA Cambridge Economic Consultants Ltd,
Geoff Broom Associates and the Regional Tourist Boards and utilises a standard
methodology capable of application throughout the UK. It therefore offers the potential for direct comparisons with similar destinations throughout the country. The approach was the subject of independent validation (R.Vaughan, Bournemouth University) in December 1994. The Model was judged robust and the margins of error acceptable and in line with other modelling techniques.
What are the model’s limitations?
The Model in its basic form relies on using information from a range of sources,
outlined above. The methodology and accuracy of these sources varies, and
therefore the estimates can only be regarded as indicative of the scale and importance of visitor activity in the local area. Thus the Model cannot take account
of any leakage of expenditure in and out of the local area from tourists taking day
trips in or out of the area in which they are staying. While it is assumed that these
may broadly balance each other in many areas, there will be an underestimate in
relation to overseas day visits from holiday accommodation in London to locations
receiving significant numbers from that source. Similarly, there is no information in
the 2012 Great Britain Day Visits survey with regard to business day trips. As with all
models, the outputs need to be viewed in the context of local information and
knowledge. Because of the data sources and modelling process, there will be a
potentially large margin of error associated with individual figures,
with small numbers being particularly prone to such errors. Therefore the outputs should be taken as indicative rather than definitive.

A record 7% of jobs in Gloucester are reliant on the growing tourism sector

It can hardly have passed anyone by who visits Gloucester today, that there have been massive changes in the last ten years.  Nowhere have these changes been reflected more than in the massive growth in the number of day visitors and tourists visiting the city from elsewhere in the UK and abroad. The growing success of Gloucester Quays and its events, the beautiful regeneration to the Cathedral quarter, the beautiful historic docks, the refurbished Waterways Museum and this year the restored Llanthony Secunda Priory along with successful events such as the Tall Ships Festival, Aethelflaed elebrations, SoMAC, Gloucester History Festival and the Three Choirs Festival have all contributed to providing activities and attractions for visitors that has led to a phenomenal growth in visitors to the city.

SoMAC-Art-in-the-City-banners

In 2015 Gloucester overtook Cheltenham in terms of the number of day visitors and total spend of visitors in the city. with nearly £205 million spent by visitors in 2017, an 62% increase on 2010.

Some highlights from the independent research which has been commissioned by Marketing Gloucester.

In 2017 there were :

3,203,000 day visits by tourist to Gloucester

920,000 nights stayed in Gloucester Hotels, B&Bs and so-on

An increase in the proportion of employment related to tourism from 5% of jobs to 7%

 

Capture

Jason Smith Chief Executive of Marketing Gloucester commented “Gloucester is now very firmly on the tourist map and these figures demonstrate how important it is that as a city we plan for the expected continued growth.  It is crucial that we particularly facilitate the development of new hotels, especially in the fully serviced sector as due to the few hotels we have, the strong growth in overnight visitors will be restricted.  It is also important going forward that we ensure that we have skilled staff in the hospitality sector and continue to invest in developing bookable products for tour operators”

Paul James, leader of Gloucester city Council, is Chairman of Marketing Gloucester and he said that he was encouraged by the figures commenting “All of the efforts that are going into regeneration of the city by the council, cathedral and private sector partners such as Peel, alongside the high profile promotion for the city which has been led on by Marketing Gloucester are really bearing fruits, bringing money and jobs to the city. Undoubtedly as Kings Quarter and other projects around the city are completed, we are likely to see the number of tourist and spend continue to increase”

Recently Marketing Gloucester was successful in bidding for part of a £500,000 fund to bring in US tourists to the city

Preparing for Full Fibre, Scoping Study commissioned for Gloucestershire Joint Core Strategy Area

imagesThe Fastershire project is seeking the services of a suitably qualified consultant to help crystallise an understanding of the need, demand, opportunity, and potential for pervasive full fibre connectivity within the urban localities of Gloucestershire. The study will need to identify the needs of and available infrastructure assets owned by public sector partners including local councils, the NHS and emergency services as well as the education sector. Additionally it will need to investigate and assess the appetite of various private sector organisations to leverage the demand and assets of the public sector to generate full fibre connectivity more widely. In the first instance to key business parks, regeneration zones, GPs Surgeries and student accommodation but potentially further providing all pervasive residential and business access to full fibre access across the Study Area.

https://procontract.due-north.com/Advert?advertId=ac3e26bb-cd64-e811-80eb-005056b64545&p=696a9836-1895-e511-8105-000c29c9ba21

Invitation to tender for Big Screen in Gloucester

20171124_164528

Gloucester BID Team

Gloucester Business Improvement District (Gloucester BID) are inviting expressions of interest for a rotating 15sqm digital screen to be installed in Kings Square Gloucester.

The screen shall rotate from vertical to horizontal and pivot on its base.

Please provide an estimate for manufacture, full installation, including groundwork and power connection and maintenance for the screen and supply of appropriate software to drive content

Any responses will be evaluated against the following criteria:

  • Expertise to design, develop and offer ongoing support to any solution provided.
  • Established trading record
  • Number of large format LED installations in the last 12 months
  • Ability to demonstarte UK based service and maintenance team
  • Demonstrate ability to service and maintain LED tiles

All expressions of interest or further queries must be addressed through email to hannah@gloucesterbid.org.uk

Closing date for expressions of interest 16th February

2018 Centre for Cities report describes Gloucester’s strengths and opportunities for growth

Below is a link to the Centre for Cities 2018 report which includes information on Gloucester.

Caveat

The report uses very sound metrics but it is nevertheless important to note that the geographic area relates to just the area covered by the local authority (LAU1) – in this case Gloucester city council.  This means that  the report’s conclusion on jobs, skills and so-on would not for example include data on businesses at Twigworth, Gloucester Business park, Staverton and so-on which for the purpose of this report are excluded.

http://www.centreforcities.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/18-01-12-Final-Full-Cities-Outlook-2018.pdf

Highlights include Gloucester:

  • Schools performing in top quartile nationally
  • Ranked 4th of 63 cities for having highest employment rates (structurally full employment)
  • 2% of city exports to China and growing
  • High level of services exports
  • Good levels of growth in high value jobs c.f. many cities (but still middle ranked)

 

  • DVB6oD9XkAEXzuJ.jpg

 

With the proposed Super City suggested in the #Glos2050 Big Conversation, we have asked Andrew Carter CEO of Centre for Cities would run an exercise using current benchmarks to see how these figures would be affected if the model was working today.  Marketing Gloucester will be assisting in providing data.  Currently Centre for Cities do not include Cheltenham as it falls below the threshold (135,000 users per day).

For further information contact info@marketinggloucester.co.uk

Gloucester is trying to get a Purple Flag. What will it mean for the city?

Reinvigorated over the past three years by the ATCM, there are now 70 Purple Flag towns and cities and the positive response both by place managers, local businesses and venues, and the public is testament to the difference that this great initiative can make.

Coming Soon: Purple Flag For Colleges & Universities

59d6df5b-atcm-purpleflag-bannerHow Does It Work?

By meeting or surpassing the standards of excellence in managing the evening and night time economy (ENTE), Place Managers throughout the UK and Ireland – and now being taken up internationally – are enjoying the benefits of Purple Flag status.

Those already accredited have reported positive feedback from local businesses, a clear message for improved communications and a platform from which to promote their night time economy.

The accreditation process takes towns and cities through a comprehensive set of standards, management processes and good practice examples all designed to help transform the ENTE and provide a research, training and development programme.

Why should you apply for Purple Flag?

Our research indicates that Purple Flag can bring real benefits which include:

  • A raised profile and an improved public image for the location
  • A wider patronage, increased expenditure
  • Lower crime and anti-social behaviour
  • A more successful mixed use economy in the longer term

As the governing body, ATCM has set out the core agenda at the heart of Purple Flag which represents the standards that must be achieved and maintained for a accreditation, which in turn will lead to a successful evening economy. These five core standards are outlined here.

  • The Policy Envelope: An after-hours policy that shows a clear strategy based on sound research, integrated public policy and a successful multi-sector partnership.
  • Wellbeing: Successful destinations are all safe and welcoming with all sectors playing their part in delivering high standards of customer care.
  • Movement: Getting home safely after an evening out is crucial, as is the ability to move around the centre on foot with ease.
  • Appeal: Successful destinations offer a vibrant choice of leisure and entertainment for a diversity of ages, groups, lifestyles and cultures.
  • Place: Successful areas are alive during the day, as well as in the evening. They contain a blend of overlapping activities that encourage people to mingle and enjoy the place. They reinforce the character and identity of the area as well as flair and imagination in urban design for the night.

If you believe your city or town has safe and vibrant night time economy, then you are encouraged to apply for Purple Flag accreditation. Local authorities, town centre partnerships, business improvement districts, crime and disorder reduction partnerships, Pubwatch partnerships, civic societies and others can all take part. In our experience it is the Local Authority or Police who take the lead in most cases.

59d6df5b-atcm-purpleflag-banner

TENDER FOR ALTERATION AND NEW WORKS TO FIRST FLOOR EASTGATE CENTRE GLOUCESTER

Picture2

Marketing Gloucester
on behalf of
UK Digital Retail Innovation Centre (UK:DRIC) 20.12.2017

TENDER FOR ALTERATION AND NEW WORKS TO FIRST FLOOR EASTGATE CENTRE GLOUCESTER

We are inviting interested contractors to apply for inclusion on the tender list for these works. Application does not guarantee inclusion on the list.
The works involves removals of walls and works to ceiling and floor finishes to the vacant retail and food hall and the creation of eleven small shop units, an open area and creation of back room offices.
A brief schedule of the works to be undertaken include: demolition of brick wall and erection of stud partitions, overhaul and repairs to existing suspended ceilings, new floor finishes and general redecoration. Open front to the units will be secured by open grid roller shutters. Alteration and adaption of existing sprinkler system, the electrical and mechanical systems and provision of new as necessary,
Estimated value of these works is £200,000.00 (two hundred thousand pounds) plus VAT where applicable.

Anticipated programme of project is shown in  appendix 1 available at this link>  click here
Application to be included for consideration by not later than 9th January 2018.
Invitation to tender 15th January 2018
Tender submission. 31st January 2018
Commencement of works 12th February 2018
Completion of the works 15th June 2018

Contractors interested in being considered for inclusion on the tender list should submit their details by not later than 5.00pm on 9th January 2018.
Company details should provide evidence of being conversant with this type of work including a list of projects undertaken with values, copies of last three years accounts, size of workforce including details of management team, work force numbers and breakdown into direct and self-employed and areas of work normally sublet.

Application should be made to:

Mr Jason I J Smith, CEO, Marketing Gloucester, 27 St Aldate Street, Gloucester, GL1 1RP to arrive not later than 5.00pm January 2018

For further information on UK:DRIC click here

UK’s first Digital Retail Innovation Centre to be opened in Gloucester

Gloucestershire’s Local Enterprise Partnership, GFirst LEP have announced a funding award of £400,000 to Marketing Gloucester to open a new national centre for digital retail innovation in the city.

The UK Digital Retail innovation Centre (UK:DRIC) will be the national centre for testing and developing disruptive digital innovations that will help shape and inform the future of cities with a special focus on retail.

 

The centre will be:

  • The national independent centre for technology solution providers and retailers to test innovative technologies and work in partnership to enhance and develop new and possibly disruptive solutions
  • A supportive incubator and catapult for high growth new retailers, all of whom will have access to next generation technologies and methodologies and will be targeted on rapid testing of their business model and growth
  • A centre for upskilling retailers in new and developing retail technologies and methodologies
  • UK:DRIC will be based on the first floor of the Eastgate Shopping Centre in Gloucester for an initial period of three years.

Diane Savory, Chair of GFirst LEP, commented “This is an exciting opportunity for Gloucestershire as it further demonstrates that our urban areas are proving to be leaders in the developing of innovation in digital retail solutions.  We are delighted to be able to award this funding to Marketing Gloucester and confident that it will lead to further inward investment from the private and public sectors.”

UKDRIC

The UK:DRIC promises to be a showcase and testbed for the latest retail technologies and could show off some future innovations such as holographic “virtual employees”, artificial intelligence, 3D scanning and printing of products, drone deliveries, robotic security guards, 360 virtual mirrors and near field communication.

 

Jason Smith, Chief Executive of Marketing Gloucester (whose team will be driving the project), said “This is a huge opportunity for Gloucester to progress in our ambition to be a showcase and testbed for digital technologies, developing the city of 2050 by 2025.  There are huge challenges facing the UK retail sector and the UK Digital Retail Innovation Centre has the potential to be a gamechanger which could have a national impact, we greatly appreciate the investment from GFirst LEP.”

Paul James, Leader of Gloucester City Council, explained why this new centre was so important for the city saying: “Gloucester is ideally positioned to be a pathfinder for the

development of new technologies, the past few years companies we have shown how innovative we as a city can be.  We were the first city to implement the three in one CCTV, Wifi and 4G solution, winning the prestigious Gordon McLanaghan Security Innovation Award; and have built up a wide range of partners such as Google’s Niantic Labs, #WDYT, Rewarding Visits and BT who have tested their technologies in the city.  There is huge potential for additional inward investment and additional jobs and this investment from GFirst LEP can act as a catalyst.”