People who work in Bradford’s evening and night-time economy are being urged to help efforts to make it more vibrant and diverse.
Bradford Business Improvement District (BID) wants people who work in the city centre after 5pm – in any sector – to come forward with their ideas to improve it as part of a major project to develop and expand the offer for all those who use it and live in it.
The BID – the limited not-for-profit company funded by more than 600 levy-paying businesses and organisations to help promote and develop the city centre – has launched an online survey to gather advice and opinions from all businesses and their employees.
It follows an in-depth survey of customers’ perceptions which elicited more than 500 responses.
Elizabeth Murphy, the BID’s Evening and Night Time Economy (ENTE) Co-ordinator said: “Bradford city centre is already a vibrant and diverse area which attracts large numbers of residents, students, tourists, visitors and businesses and their teams.
“But we know things can be better and it’s part of our mission to do all we can to make it so.
“We need to ensure that we understand the best way to go about it and the best people to help us understand it are the businesses that work within that sector – pubs, bars, cafes, restaurants, nightclubs, cinemas, theatres, leisure attractions, tourist venues, hotels and other accommodation providers, as well as late-opening shops and service businesses – and the people who work in them.
“Their responses to this survey will help us get a real grip on what is working well and what could be improved in the evening economy, from 5pm onwards every day, to provide a positive and enjoyable experience for all.
“The outcome of this survey will help focus investment in streetscape improvements, events and street art, better facilities and positive celebration of the evening economy and much more.”
People who work in youth, faith or volunteering organisations and even live performers are also being asked to contribute their views.
“We want as complete and as clear a picture as we can get of what those who are involved in the ENTE sector every day feel about how the city centre works after hours and how it can be made better,” said Ms Murphy.
“Everyone’s opinion is valuable and will count towards the knowledge we gather and the answers we are able to formulate – so this is a brilliant chance for people to have their say.”
One of the key areas the survey focuses on is collaborative and partnership working to understand whether if the full advantage is being taken of the opportunities that arise.
“For instance, if a new blockbuster movie opens in Bradford, do local businesses know about it in advance and exploit it for commercial benefit by, say, developing a themed cocktail or menu or offering special rates for hotel rooms with a meal at a local restaurant and movie tickets packaged together,” said Ms Murphy.
“It’s a simple example but businesses working together in this sort of way can achieve so much more and bring something special to the late scene in the city centre.”
Some of the other areas covered in the survey include marketing and advertising trends, promotion, ways to improve safety and the perception of safety at different times in different areas, opportunities and ideas for improving footfall, festival themes, street lighting, the environment, tackling begging and anti-social behaviour, transport and support for vulnerable people.
“All of these issues are important for the future success of the city centre and we need to gather as much information and as many ideas as we can,” said Ms Murphy. “It only takes a few minutes to complete the survey but the answers we receive could have a big impact on the future of everyone who works in ENTE sector so we would urge them all to please take part.”
The survey, which is fully confidential and anonymous, can be completed here or via the link on the bradfordbid.co.uk website.