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New UK Government Must Appoint Night Time Economy Minister Urges NTIA

The United Kingdom’s night time economy (NTE) is at a pivotal point, struggling to meet global standards due to a lack of dedicated representation and leadership. While over 100 NTE advisors worldwide are driving innovation and growth, the UK lags behind, with only Manchester, West Midlands, Bristol, and London currently supporting such roles.

The night time economy is more than a cultural facet; it significantly bolsters national and local economies by fostering employment, tourism, and vibrant communities. As cities globally thrive by embracing their night time potential, the UK risks falling behind. There is a critical opportunity to lead by example, championing a sector known for resilience and adaptability but in need of strategic support to fully realise its potential.

By appointing a central Government lead for the night time economy and hospitality and developing a central strategy that mandates local representation and policy guidance, the UK can set a new standard for nightlife governance. This approach will enhance the vitality of the night time economy and position the UK as a leader in innovative and inclusive economic development.

Such a move would restore confidence within the sector and demonstrate a commitment to true representation and leadership. It would also create a national network of industry representatives to guide policymakers through the sector’s unique challenges.

Globally, notable figures have transformed the night time economy landscape. Ariel Palitz, former NTE Mayor of New York City, redefined policing nightlife. Camilo Ospina Guzman in Colombia is collaborating with Congress to establish a National Law of the Night. Lutz Leichsenring from VibeLab and spokesperson for the Berlin Club Commission has been crucial in creating protections for NTE businesses and expanding Berlin’s cultural assets.

Mirik Milan, the first Night Mayor from Amsterdam, continues to advocate for nightlife globally, supporting cities that embrace the growth and development of a safe and considered night time economy.

Australia exemplifies this success, with Michael Rodriguez appointed as the 24-hour Commissioner for New South Wales in 2021 and John Graham as the Minister for Night Time Economy in 2023, leading a thriving and innovative approach to NTE strategy.

These examples show how dedicated roles, both nationally and regionally, have transformed nightlife and could potentially do the same in the UK.

Michael Kill, CEO of NTIA, states, “The night time economy is a powerhouse, contributing significantly to employment, tourism, and community vibrancy. Yet, without strategic leadership, it risks stagnation. Global cities have embraced the night time economy’s potential, and it’s time for the UK to step up. We have an opportunity to lead by example, emulating the success seen in New York, Berlin, Amsterdam, and New South Wales, Australia, where dedicated leadership has transformed the night economy.”

“The appointment of a Night Time Economy Government Lead will be the cornerstone for the recovery, stability, and growth of this vital sector. It will enable the UK to build a cohesive national strategy for the night time economy, aligning with successful global models, providing a framework for local authorities to adopt and implement tailored policies that reflect the distinct needs of their communities.”

Appointing a Night Time Economy Minister is the first and most crucial step toward securing the future of this essential sector. It’s time to revitalise the UK’s night time economy, creating a thriving, dynamic environment for all, and ensuring the sector feels valued within the UK as it does globally.