Liverpool BID Company launches security initiatives to improve safety on city streets
Liverpool BID Company launches the first of a series of support measures to improve safety for its BID businesses, their customers and visitors during evenings.
From next week, the BID has agreed to fund extra security staff to work with and alongside Liverpool City Council’s City Watch team, within the council’s CCTV control room. Their role will be to monitor the BID areas in and around Bold Street, Church Street, Williamson Square, the Cavern Quarter, Castle Street and Old Hall Street, and work closely with security staff at bars, clubs and restaurants to react to issues during the busier night-time periods from Thursday to Saturday. This service will be available for businesses outside the BID areas at a small cost as well.
In addition, Liverpool BID Company has invested in a new ENTE (evening and night-time economy) Radio Link system (BID already funds a Radio Link for its daytime retail businesses), which will allow businesses to be linked up and communicate with the BID funded staff at City Watch, enabling camera support when an incident breaks out, allowing the incident to be recorded and the appropriate response provided. New ENTE security briefing meetings will also be launched in September, allowing businesses to share intelligence and issues related to safety.
These new projects are part of a number of safety and environment initiatives that allowed Liverpool BID Company to negotiate a full exemption on the council’s Late Night Levy for its BID businesses in Liverpool city centre. All premises in Liverpool licensed to supply alcohol at any time between midnight and 6am are required to pay the charge. 257 BID businesses are currently exempt.
Mike Edwards, area manager, Pub Invest Group, who operator several bars and clubs in the city centre, including Sgt Peppers, McCooley’s, Rubber Soul, Heaven, Blind Tiger and Level, said:
“The new initiatives will help to improve the communication between all the premises within the area and the local stakeholders to make the area safer which is a great improvement.
“The support that we currently get from the BID, Merseyside Police and Liverpool Council City is fantastic; by improving this communication with the new radio system and the link with City Watch everything will run much more smoothly and will give people a safe and enjoyable night out.”
Bill Addy, chief executive, Liverpool BID Company, said:
“Keeping our streets safe day and night for our businesses and visitors is a top priority of Liverpool BID Company. We are always listening to our levy payers, and one of their high concerns is safety, which we feel these new initiatives will address tenfold.
“The additional support this new member of staff will provide to the city council’s already fantastic City Watch programme will be immeasurable, while the added Radio Link system will allow our ENTE businesses to be linked up and to communicate with City Watch and maximise the response, making our areas a safer place to visit, and to work in. We have already seen great successes from the daytime retail Radio Link, which this will replicate.”
Liverpool City Council’s cabinet member for community and safer neighbourhoods, Councillor Emily Spurrell, said:
“Liverpool is one of the safest cities in the UK and as a result, our night time economy grows year on year with thousands of visitors and residents heading to this popular night-out destination.
“The safety and security of those enjoying themselves in our city is paramount and we’re delighted the BID has taken steps which not only complements the work of the City Watch team, but also strengthens the relationship with local businesses by empowering them when it comes to responding to any incidents which may arise.”
The new BID officer will begin on Thursday, August 17, and will be contracted through the council’s security provider, Carlisle Security to work from the City Watch Control Room. They will specifically listen to the radio communications of the bars, clubs and other late night venues, Thursday-Saturday, 9pm-5am. Incidents will be logged at the time and where possible monitored by the CCTV staff, and intelligence will be passed to the blue light services and other partner agencies where appropriate. The officer will then keep in touch with the ENTE Radio Link system and keep them informed of the outcomes.
Liverpool has held Purple Flag status since 2010, an accreditation given to towns and cities which have a safe, well-managed ENTE, and provide an entertaining, diverse and enjoyable night out.