REPRO FREE. 06/10/2017 Pictured City Hall, Illuminated in Purple, in support for the Opening of the Purple Flag Weekend on Corn Market Street, Cork. Picture: Jim Coughlan.

Lord Mayor of Cork, Cllr. John Sheehan, has welcomed the news that the city centre has successfully retained the prestigious Purple Flag award for 2020.

The international accreditation, awarded by the Association of Cities and Towns Management, celebrates areas of excellence in night-time economy and requires renewal every two years. In November, independent assessors came to the city again to evaluate the area under a number of stringent criteria including the quality of the City Centre’s offering, ease of movement through the area and the level of partnership working. Opera Lane were delighted to represent the Retail offer in the city during the visit.

Some of the Assessors’ comments in approving the renewal of the award include:

“The Arts & Cultural Offering is a vital contributor to the Purple Flag Offering and is done very well in Cork.”

“There was an exceptional vibrancy of all areas between the hours of 5pm and 8pm, notwithstanding the additional activity due to the festive season. The non-alcohol offer was also clearly popular especially with young adults and teenagers.

Opera Lane was one of the main retail areas visited and during the visit to the retail areas, all were busy with good footfall driven by big brands and passionate staff who completely encapsulated the Purple Flag initiative.”

“Late at night, there was clear evidence of civic pride and shared sense of purpose between team members, together with practical examples, such as door staff at different premises and the work of the Cork  Street Pastors” [ a multidenominational volunteer organisation who care for people socialising in Cork city centre on Saturday nights]. 

Lord Mayor, Cllr. John Sheehan said: “The award reaffirms that Cork is a destination not to be missed. There is great enthusiasm by all stakeholders in the city to want to continuously improve on what is currently on offer and achieving the Purple Flag status for a third time is a credit to those who work tirelessly to make the area appealing for an evening out. The fact that the assessors were extremely impressed with our arts and culture offering reinforces the recent EU Monitor report which for the second time assessed Cork City to be the most culturally vibrant medium sized city in Europe.”

“This is a great achievement for the city centre. The businesses together with key stakeholders such as the Gardai, Cork City Council, Cork Chamber and Cork Business Association continue to work hard to ensure that it remains a city comparable with the best.’