Sadiq Khan unveils vision for 24-hour London with extended business opening hours

Sadiq Khan has unveiled plans for a 24-hour London today to transform the city into a leading global nightlife hub. 

The Mayor of London’s  vision is the first of its kind for London and outlines 10 principles which will help to pave the way for the capital to become a trailblazing city at night, competing with the likes of Berlin, Tokyo and New York.

The plans include promoting nighttime culture and leisure, increasing opening hours, working closely with boroughs and police and ensuring the safety of nighttime workers.

Sadiq Khan said: “Today’s vision isn’t just about pubs and clubs – it’s about everything from museums and theatres opening later, being able to do your weekly shop after an evening shift, through to the safety of Londoners working and travelling at night and residents being able to get a good night’s sleep.

“We must create a life at night that works for everyone, showing the world that London is open for business, open for people and ideas, and open 24 hours a day.”

London’s £26bn night-time economy generates one in eight jobs in the capital and is set to grow in the coming years.

Mr Khan added: “I’ve pledged to make growing London’s culture a core priority, and our city’s thriving night-time economy is a key part of this. Building a vibrant 24-hour city is crucial for London to remain a cultural and economic powerhouse – it is also what keeps visitors, workers, students and businesses flocking to our great city.

“We have stiff competition from other world cities like Paris, Berlin, Amsterdam, Tokyo and New York and I want to make sure London is on the front foot by planning for life at night in the same way the city does for the day.”

The vision will be realised by Night Czar Amy Lamé alongside the new Night Time Commission chaired by Philip Kolvin QC, which will include planners, licensing experts, venue owners, artists, the police, media entrepreneurs as well as leaders of major cultural organisations.

The 24-hour vision also seeks to address the challenges facing the prosperity of the capital’s night-time economy, including the supply of workers from across the European Union, rising business rates, competition from other cities and the perception that London as night is not as safe and welcoming for all Londoners as it could be.

The Mayor has already taken significant steps to safeguard the capital’s night-time culture and economy. As well as launching the first-ever Night Tube service at weekends, Sadiq has also outlined plans to protect pubs, music venues, LGBT+ venues, and to set up a group of Night Time Champions from every London local authority.

Chair of the Night Time Commission, Philip Kolvin QC, said: “London can only become a truly 24-hour city if we can bring everyone across the industry, the boroughs, police, transport and health to work together.

“This vision gives us the guiding principles we need to ensure decisions around planning, licensing and building for the future make the night-time economy a priority. With the multi-talented Night Time Commission, we can bring the whole city’s resources together to tackle the challenges we face and to maximise every opportunity for London to become the world-leading night-time economy.”

London’s Night Czar, Amy Lamé, said: “As Night Czar, I have been out and about speaking to everyone who has a stake in our night-time economy – residents, workers, revellers, venue owners, the police, councils and many others.

“We want London to be the world’s number one night-time destination, whether you want to grab a late bite to eat, take in an afterhours exhibition, enjoy a drink, dance or just get a good night’s sleep.  The 24-hour vision takes the needs of all Londoners and visitors to the capital into account and will help to shape all our future work to make London a 24-hour metropolis.”

Featured image courtesy of Viv Lynch via Flikr, with thanks.

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