Sligo has once again retained the prestigious Purple Flag Award in recognition for its Evening and Night-Time Economy (ENTE) offering. The Purple Flag is an international award (similar to Blue Flags for beaches) that identifies town and city centres that demonstrate continuous improvement in the activities and experiences that occur between 5PM to 5AM.

Managed by the Association of Town and City Management (ATCM), destinations awarded the Purple Flag are acknowledged for providing a vibrant and diverse mix of dining, entertainment and culture while promoting the safety and wellbeing of visitors and local residents in the ENTE.

Examples of areas of improvement include the continued expansion of the Sligo Summer Festival, the development of the Stephen St Cultural Plaza and the reopening of the Sligo Tourism Office (a joint venture between Fáilte Ireland and Sligo BID).

As town and city centres continue to exit lockdown and visitor numbers improve, tourism-based awards such as the Purple Flag are being used nationally and internationally to denote destinations that have built strong relationships between the business community, An Garda Síochána and local authorities. These awards are used in promotional opportunities and in governmental initiatives (such as this year’s Night-Time Economy Support Scheme).

Related, Sligo Business Improvement District (BID) has been awarded €121,789 to create a street ambassador programme from the Department of Justice. This project seeks to create and train a network of volunteers for a street ambassador programme who will assist visitors on places to visit and things to do.

Gail McGibbon CEO of Sligo BID said, “We want to build a team of volunteer ambassadors who will be the friendly faces and helping hands that will give a great impression of how welcoming our town is.”

Finally, Sligo BID were also delighted to support Sligo County Council’s application to be selected as one of the nine pilot towns and cities in Ireland to receive a dedicated Evening and Night Time coordinator. Also included are Dublin City, Cork City, Limerick City, Galway City, Kilkenny, Drogheda, Buncrana and Longford Town. This role will focus on continuing to improve the fantastic offering Sligo has – for both residents and visitors – across all the venues in the town centre. The coordinator will work to ensure that Sligo continues to retain its Purple Flag status in the future.

Sligo BID is delighted that Sligo Town has once again been recognised for its wide variety of cultural, entertainment and leisure activities.

Pictured at the awards ceremony recently held in Cork are (L-R)

Laura Blake, (ATCM), Brian Flynn, (Sligo County Council), Finbarr Filan, (Centra), Gail McGibbon, (Sligo BID) and Allen Banks, (The Snug Bar) 

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