Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has today announced a new £500,000 programme to create Night Time Enterprise Zones in the capital to help support London's economic recovery.
The Night Time Enterprise Zones will enable boroughs to encourage more people to use their high streets after 6pm.
The funding, in partnership with the London Economic Action Partnership (LEAP), will create at least three zones across the capital where boroughs will work with businesses and local communities to develop ideas to make their high streets more accessible, inclusive and welcoming at night.
They will be supported to develop a range of ideas, such as extending opening hours or holding special events, taking measures to improve women's safety and supporting good work standards for those working at night.
It follows a Night Time Enterprise Zone pilot in Waltham Forest in 2019 where extended opening times, events, increased promotion and repurposing council-owned buildings helped to increase footfall on Walthamstow High Street by 22%, improved safety perceptions and widened local participation.
Khan said: "Our Night Time Enterprise Zone pilot showed what is possible for our town centres at night and, by expanding the zones to more areas, we will help local authorities and businesses make their high streets more welcoming and inclusive after 6pm."
Night czar Amy Lamé said: "Our city is incredibly active at night, but too often our high streets shut down from 6pm, offering no reason for people to be there. We have an opportunity to work in partnership to boost local businesses, communities and the wellbeing of night workers across the capital. Through our Night Time Enterprise Zone programme we want to help reimagine our high streets with innovative ideas and help councils, communities and businesses to pioneer better ways of living, working and doing business."
Kate Nicholls, chief executive of UKHospitality and former chair of the London Night Time Commission, added: "I'm delighted today's announcement from the mayor builds on one of the key recommendations of the London Night Time Commission's Think Night Report. A diverse and vibrant night time offer, rooted in the local community, is something the commission recognised as being essential in ensuring our high streets are seen as attractive destinations for everyone after 6pm."
Local authorities have until 28 July to apply for the funding.
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