Purple Flag flying high over town centre

Purple Flag flying high over town centre

The public and private partnership behind Wigan’s Purple Flag status has officially recognised a new era for the town centre.

Following a bid led by the council, Wigan was added to the list of Purple Flag locations late last year.

The official flag was raised in Believe Square last week and representatives from the organisations who helped with the application gathered to mark the milestone at Revolution on King Street.

Councillor Dane Anderton, lead member for night-time economy at Wigan Council, said: "Receiving Purple Flag status reflects the hard work put in place by Wigan Council, partners and local businesses to ensure everyone can enjoy a safe and welcoming evening out.

“It will help to raise the profile and improve the image of the town centre, encouraging visitors and investment.”

Overseen by the Association of Town and City Management (ATCM), Purple Flag is an international accreditation programme.

It acknowledges town centres that are helping to create safe and thriving locations at night for all visitors.

The accreditation process requires town centres to meet a set of rigorous standards and identify further opportunities to enhance the evening and night-time offer.

Other locations to gain Purple Flag status in our region are St Helens, Bury, Stockport and Chester. 

Sacha Lord, night-time economy advisor for Greater Manchester, who supported the Purple Flag bid, said: “This is a huge vote of confidence, a big tick in the box for Wigan Borough.

“Everyone in this sector has suffered over the last two years during the pandemic and this is like rebuilding a house; you can’t do that without getting the foundations right and this is a massive part of that.

“It’s really exciting and what you have here is a fantastic partnership, not just the council and the police but with the operators, as well.

“I’m proud and honoured to be a part of it.”

Wigan’s application – submitted in partnership between the council and town centre businesses and organisations – was commended in particular for its Safety of Women at Night (SWAN) initiative.

This has seen awareness activity (such as the Call It Out campaign), training initiatives and safety measures such as safety marshals in town centres across the borough.

Posted on Tuesday 14th March 2023

© Wigan Council