The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has launched his vision for London to become a leading 24-hour global city as he pledged to plan for life at night in the same way the city does for the day.
Sadiq’s 24-hour 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 principles focus on building a night-time culture which serves the needs of all Londoners and visitors, promoting all forms of culture and leisure – a wide range of activities for people of all ages and interests.
They also aim to attract investment and tourism; increase commerce through increasing opening hours where appropriate; and to create balanced and sustainable night time offers across the capital.
The Mayor says London’s £26bn night-time economy generates one in eight jobs in the capital and is set to grow in the coming years.
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.
It will help to shape the way in which City Hall, authorities across the capital and industry leaders build the night-time culture and economy over the coming years. Through this vision, Amy and Philip will support local authorities to plan for life at night in their planning, licensing, culture, regeneration, community safety and economic strategies to bring a diverse night-time culture to every borough, as well as working with cultural organisations, international stakeholders and investors to open up more opportunity for London afterhours.
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.
Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “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.
“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.”
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.”
Dr David Lutton, Economic Policy Director at London First, said: “Unlocking the 24-hour economy will mean a more vibrant and successful London, delivering billions of pounds for the economy and creating thousands more jobs. So setting out a clear approach for planning and licensing through to freight, deliveries and road use, promises huge benefits for our capital.”