23/07/2009

Belfast 'Twelfth' Was Shopping Hit

Initial feedback on the commercial impact of Belfast shops being open over the traditional 'Twelfth' celebration has been excellent.

This year's event, titled 'Orangefest' on 13 July witnessed Belfast city centre shops opening on the day of the parades for the first time.

Belfast City Centre Management facilitated a partnership, supported by Belfast City Council through the Peace III 'City of Festivals Programme', which saw Orangefest and Belfast Chamber of Trade and Commerce organise a programme of world class street entertainment.

According to City Centre Manager, Andrew Irvine, and Councillor William Humphrey, Chairman of Belfast City Council's Development committee.

"Castlecourt Shopping Centre reported footfall numbers equal to a good Thursday evening and city centre restaurants had to operate waiting lists for tables," Mr Irvine said.
News Image
"An initial small survey of members of the public attending the Street Entertainment shows also reported very high satisfaction levels - with 98% intending to return next year.

"All in all, this represents an excellent result and provides a sound underpinning of the joint strategy developed by Orangefest and Belfast Chamber of Trade and Commerce."

Councillor William Humphrey also welcomed the move to support the city centre traders: "It was wonderful to see families being attracted in to the city and enjoying the full programme of events planned," he said.

"This clearly has been good for traders, good for Belfast and good for the Orange tradition. In this scenario, everyone is a winner."

Also, according to the survey findings, many 'new' people were attracted in with 62% of those questioned having never having been in the city centre on the 12th or 13th before.

(BMcC)

Related Northern Ireland News Stories
Click here for the latest headlines.

05 April 2004
Business membership figures show 'massive' increase
Figures released today by Belfast City Centre Management and the Belfast Chamber of Trade and Commerce show a massive increase in the number of businesses joining their joint membership scheme.
15 March 2004
St Patrick's Day event has support of BCC says councillor
The Chairman of Belfast City Council’s Good Relations Steering Panel has challenged claims that the Council is not supporting St Patrick’s Day in Belfast. It follows a protest outside Belfast City Hall last week by the St Patrick's Carnival Committee who claim the Council isn't funding this year's event at the City Hall.
20 June 2014
Belfast 'Heart Of Economy' - Robinson
"Belfast is the heart of the local economy," Peter Robinson has said. The First Minister made the comments as he launched a blueprint that sets out "bold and aspirational plans" for Belfast City Centre.
06 May 2016
Traders Lobby For Lidl Store Expansion
The Connswater Traders' Association has urged politicians and planning officials to support a proposed store expansion by supermarket Lidl at the site. A decision is due to be made on the planning application later this month.
12 October 2004
City Hall prepares for bookworm invasion
Belfast City Hall is preparing itself for an invasion of young bookworms later this month. Belfast City Council is teaming up with two major cultural festivals, Young at Art and the Belfast Festival at Queen’s, to open up the world of children’s literature.