With a range of restaurants, bars, arts and entertainment venues and clubs, Aberdeen boasts a varied and lively night life. But it is also one of the safest cities in the UK to enjoy a night out, thanks to a partnership led by the city’s business improvement district.
Aberdeen became the first city in Scotland to be awarded a ‘Purple Flag’ by the Association of Town and City Management (ATCM). The programme measures the wellbeing, movement, appeal and “sense of place” a city offers to revellers keen on enjoying a night out.
The city has now achieved the coveted accreditation seven years’ running. The initiative is led by Aberdeen Inspired, with support from Police Scotland, Aberdeen City Council, Street Pastors, venues and other key stakeholders.
The Purple Flag recognises the partners’ commitment to promoting a safe and secure night time economy. But the award is also about having a good time and ensuring there are enticing reasons to come out of an evening. To meet this requirement, Aberdeen Inspired also leads special occasions and events that attract visitors and boost businesses at the same time.
This year Aberdeen Inspired ran Inspired Nights on The Green, a series of street food events in one of Aberdeen’s most historic and intriguing districts. One of the oldest known parts of Aberdeen, The Green is now renowned for hosting a range of independent retailers, bars, cafes and restaurants. This year, Inspired Nights on The Green ran from April through to September, offering residents and visitors outdoor, fully-licensed events serving up tasty drinks, delicious food and engaging entertainment throughout the season when nights in the north east of Scotland are longer.
A big focus for the organisation is working towards creating a vibrant night-time economy. As part of this, Aberdeen Inspired brought in an ‘Alive After 5’ strategy, which showcases everything Aberdeen city centre has to offer.
A range of initiatives have been introduced geared towards this buoyant strategy. This includes introducing the first Evening and Night Time Economy Manager in Scotland to stimulate the city’s ‘night-time’ offering, Aberdeen Restaurant Week, Inspired Nights on The Green and growing cultural events like the Aberdeen International Comedy Festival and Nuart Aberdeen.
Linked to this, the first Inspired Nights Conference was held in May 2018, looking at all aspects of the Night-Time Economy. The first of its kind in Scotland, the event was repeated in September 2019, attracting an international line-up to Aberdeen.