London gets new Night Time Enterprise Zones

Bromley, Vauxhall and Woolwich are set to become the capital’s new Night Time Enterprise Zones.

The Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has announced that Bromley town centre, Vauxhall and Woolwich are set to become the capital’s new Night Time Enterprise Zones

The project from Khan aims to encourage more people to use their high streets after 6pm and boost the local economy. 

The boroughs of Bromley, Lambeth and Greenwich will each be awarded £130,000 to develop a range of activities and programmes to make their streets more welcoming after 6pm and support businesses.

In partnership with the London Economic Action Partnership, the funding will allow the boroughs to work with businesses and local communities to develop ideas to make their high streets more accessible, inclusive and welcoming at night. This includes extending opening hours and offering a greater range of activities that encourage a diverse range of people to make use of the high street after 6pm. It will also support the number of night workers benefitting from good work standards. 

In Vauxhall, the council plans to activate unique spaces, such as the Pleasure Garden tunnel, to celebrate the area’s LGBTQI+ history through murals designed by local artists, in partnership with the Royal Vauxhall Tavern. They are also identifying sites within the Vauxhall area that could be used to support culture, entertainment, leisure, education, training and wellbeing after dark. 

Woolwich will be delivering a year-round mix of events, encouraging locals and those in other boroughs to think of them as a ‘lates’ destination. They will also be creating a low level sustainable lighting scheme connecting the town centre and the Royal Arsenal, improving safety and create a more welcoming destination for all. 

The announcement follows the success of 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%. 

Camden, Enfield, Hackney, Harrow and Islington are also set to receive £25,000 each to pilot ideas that make licensing policies and processes less time consuming and costly for local businesses. 

“Local businesses and high streets are at the heart of our communities, but they are struggling due to the spiralling cost of doing business and the lasting impact of the pandemic," says Khan. "I am committed to doing all I can to support them during these challenging times and am proud that we are creating three Night Time Enterprise Zones to bring innovative ideas that will support our high streets after 6pm. We all have a role to play to support our local businesses and help drive forward our economic recovery as we continue working to build a better and more prosperous London for everyone.”  

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