Belmont Street Quarter consultation now open!
The bold decision was taken by Aberdeen City Growth & Resources Committee to fully endorse the Aberdeen City Centre Masterplan recommendations earlier this month.
Whilst there is still much to be done to ensure delivery and whilst we appreciate that, for example, some of the recommendations such as the partial pedestrianisation of a small section of Union Street have divided opinion the onus is now on all involved to ensuring these ambitious plans become a reality and work for both business, locals and visitors to the city.
Exciting changes have been agreed by Aberdeen City Council’s City Growth and Resources committee for key streets in the heart of the city centre including Belmont Street, Little Belmont Street, Gaelic Lane, and Back Wynd. These changes build on the recent temporary outdoor café culture and will provide a future-proofed outdoor space for business and public seating to enliven the area, creating a permanent on-street café culture in the Belmont Street Quarter. It will also create space in favour of pedestrians and encourage footfall.
Aberdeen City Council are now at the stage of developing of a Business Case and operational model for the permanent café culture in consultation with local traders with a report back to the council’s City Growth and Resources committee in February 2022. They are looking for your input to progress this exciting new chapter in the Belmont Street and Back Wynd area. Complete the survey here.
The gift that covers every wish!
Aberdeen’s local economy has benefited from a cash injection of more than £220k in the first year since our local gift card scheme was launched. It’s one of the UK’s most successful schemes and is helping to deliver much footfall and spend directly back into the city.
With nearly 200 businesses now signed up to accept the Aberdeen Gift Card, we have just launched a major marketing push aimed at maximising sales of the card in the run up to Christmas. The marketing push runs for a month on radio, press, TV and digital media and promotes the Aberdeen Gift Card as “the only card you need to give this Christmas!”.
Fans of Corrie, Emmerdale, I’m a Celebrity, Loose Women, This Morning, The Chase and many more ITV shows will see the advert air over the next few weeks, but you can catch a preview here.
As part of the marketing campaign, we want to offer businesses who are part of the scheme a chance to participate in a Christmas gift card giveaway. We have ten £50 Aberdeen Gift Cards to give away, all we require is for you to host the competition on your social media platforms. This is a great way to encourage engagement & let the public know that you accept the card. If your business would like to take part, please get in touch by clicking here.
We would also remind all businesses that accept the card to ensure all staff are familiar with how to take payment using a gift card as we head into the busy Christmas period. We know many of you recruit seasonal staff so make sure they are briefed to how to process the card. If you need training or support materials get in touch or read our merchants payment guide here.
Funded by Aberdeen Inspired the scheme is free to join and does not cost your business or the consumer anything, it’s simply another payment method for the goods, services or products your business sells. If you’d like to sign your business up to be part of scheme then simply click here and we will do the rest.
Comedy is back with a bang!
We’re ready to tickle some funny-bones from 6 to 16 October 2022, as three fantastic comedians have been added to the Aberdeen International Comedy Festival.
Headlining and closing the festival on Sunday October 16, is the unique and eccentric Milton Jones who is infamous for his over the top shirts. Also announced are the joyful Harriet Kemsley, and offbeat comic Jordan Brookes and comedy writer.
Along with these amazing AICF 2022 announcements, popular comedian Sara Pascoe will bring her hotly anticipated show Success Story to the Music Hall on Saturday 4 February 2023 for a one-off Festival Night which will be BSL signed.
Tickets for Milton Jones, Harriet Kemsley and Jordon Brookes are on sale NOW & Sara Pascoe tickets will be on sale from Friday December 3.
Although the comedy show announcements so far are for the bigger city centre venues, we are working hard on programming comedians for our city centre hotels, bars and event spaces, if you have a space that you’d like to be part of the comedy festival then get in touch with us here.
Read more about the latest comedians announced for the festival here.
Aberdeen Performing Arts joins the Aberdeen Gift Card Scheme
Fans of live entertainment can now use the Aberdeen Gift Card to buy tickets for shows heading to Aberdeen.
Aberdeen Performing Arts (APA), who are the operator of three major city centre venues – HMT, The Music Hall and Lemon Tree - helped us celebrate the first anniversary of the scheme by announcing that they had signed up to accept the gift card. APA also sell tickets for shows at the Tivoli Theatre and Aberdeen Arts Centre so it's fantastic news that customers will be able to use their gift cards to pay for a ticket to a live performance that they’re excited to see.
Together with APA there have also been several new retailers and hospitality businesses added to the free scheme recently. Click here to see the full list of city businesses that are now part of the hugely successful and growing Aberdeen Gift Card scheme.
Read more about the Aberdeen Performing Arts announcement here.
Christmas is back in the City Centre
Aberdeen Christmas Village is back and bigger than ever! Organised by Aberdeen City Council and Codona's, with support from Aberdeen Inspired, the event will run until Friday 31 December 2021 on Broad Street and Upperkirkgate area. Head down to enjoy ice skating, jaw-dropping rides and some festive food and drink!
Our Holiday Christmas Market is also back at Marischal College's Quadrangle this year in partnership with Curated Aberdeen by Charlie House. Head to our social channels to stay up to date with the latest news.
Curated Aberdeen within Bon Accord will still be operating as usual throughout December with both markets providing the perfect opportunity to shop local option to the city centre scene this Festive Season. For more information on events happening in Aberdeen over the Christmas period, please visit Aberdeen City Council's website.
Aberdeen Art Gallery – Scotland’s building of the year
The project to transform Aberdeen Art Gallery, home to one of the finest collections in the UK, has been recognised as the best building in Scotland in the prestigious Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland awards.
It beat four other architectural projects to the award including developments involving the Bayes Centre in Edinburgh by Bennetts Associates; The Egg Shed in Ardrishaig by Oliver Chapman Architects; The Hill House Box in Helensburgh by Carmody Groarke and the Sportscotland National Sports Training Centre in Inverclyde by Reiach and Hall Architects.
Make sure to pay a visit to Scotland’s building of the year when you have the chance! Read more here.
Aberdeen Restaurant Week – we want your feedback!
Aberdeen Restaurant Week is over and what a bumper foodie fortnight it was with many restaurants telling us they had their most successful event yet.
A huge thank you to all the businesses who took part, our ambassadors and of course the people of Aberdeen who ventured out to dine, the team here are only just recovering from all the meals we enjoyed with friends and family.
Looking to 2022 we would like to get your views to help us shape the next event. So if you were a member of the public who dined out during ARW, please take our public survey here.
If you want to sign up for the next edition of ARW, please notify us of your interest by clicking here.
It’s Panto Season!
He’s behind you! Looking for a guide to panto’s going on throughout the city? Look no further!
Beauty and the Beast at His Majesty’s Theatre - Don’t miss this year’s unmissable His Majesty’s Theatre pantomime, Beauty and the Beast starring River City’s Joyce Falconer, Call The Midwife’s Laura Main, Aberdonian actress Danielle Jam and returning favourites Alan McHugh and Paul‐ James Corrigan. Get your tickets here.
Sleeping Beauty at Aberdeen Arts Centre - After their box office smash ‘Aladdin’ TaleGate Theatre productions are thrilled to be back at Aberdeen Arts Centre for 2021 with the magical ‘Sleeping Beauty‘! Packed with songs, slapstick, silliness, audience participation and all the fairytale magic of traditional pantomime! This fun-filled extravaganza is guaranteed to have the whole family under its spell! Get your tickets here.
Jack and the Beanstalk at The Tivoli Theatre - When Jack and his mum hit hard times they have to resort to desperate measures and sell their beloved cow Wilhelmina, however this is just the start of their adventures. Join the Tivoli in December 2021 for some giant Fi-Fi-Fo-Fun! Get your tickets here.
Christmas at Union Square
The Union Square Giving Tree is back! They are delighted to be working with four local charities this year - AberNecessities, CALICO, Befriend a Child and Instant Neighbour. If you’re in for a shop or bite to eat, why don’t you pick up one of the tags from their tree and support one of these fantastic local causes.
Union Square are excited to welcome Snow + Rock to the centre. The brand new store can be found on Level 1 of the mall and upstairs within Cotswolds. A brand new ‘Hive’ boot fitting lab can also be found in store along with Cotswolds most technical and premium sports brands
They would also like to remind shoppers that as we head into the busy shopping period to remember to wear a face covering and respect others.
Elf School is in session at Aberdeen’s Trinity Centre
The Trinity Centre in Aberdeen are throwing open their doors to prospective Elf Students from Aberdeen City and Shire, aged 5-12, encouraging local children to take part in a number of safe and sociable activities.
Santa needs help spreading cheer more than ever this year – and he’s on the lookout for graduate elves that are fit for the job.
The project is exclusive to Trinity and is run in partnership with local charity, We Too.
Read more here.
Aberdeen Street Pastors – Safe Space truck is back
Aberdeen Street Pastors ‘Safe Space’ truck is back in the city centre after many months of hibernation. Located opposite the main entrance to the Trinity Centre on the pedestrianised part of Union Street the ‘Safe Space’ manned by the street pastors is the base from which they offer care and assistance to anyone in need of help.
Adrian Rowett, Coordinator of Aberdeen Street Pastors, commented, “We are very pleased that the Council, along with support from Police Scotland, Aberdeen Inspired and other partners in the night-time economy, have given approval for the ‘Safe Space’ vehicle to be located on Union Street between 10pm and 4am on Friday and Saturday nights.
“We hope to be able to continue to do this in the run up to Christmas and into next year too. This will enable the Street Pastors to ‘listen, care and help’, not only with their small mobile teams, but also to be a landmark and in fixed location for those who need to come for some help. After 18 months without the truck in the city, this is a great step back to assisting in the City Centre at the weekends.”
For any more information please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the website email@example.com.
Brush up your digital skills with Business Gateway
Business Gateway are reaching out to local businesses in Aberdeen City & Shire with a reminder to get in touch with them if your business could benefit from free support.
If your business could benefit from digital upskilling, then you may be eligible for up to 21 hours of free support with a dedicated digital adviser. Topics covered by digital upskilling include digital marketing strategy, social media, website review and development, search engine optimisation, Google Analytics and AdWords, and more!
To find out more you can call them on 01224 289725 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Guidance on utilising outdoor spaces for pubs and restaurants
Businesses are reminded if they want to make permanent any additional outdoor seating space they have erected during the Covid-19 pandemic they need to apply for appropriate permissions before 25 January.
The council’s approach to outdoor seating was relaxed last year to enable cafes, restaurants and bars to fast-track through the usual processes. However, from 25 January, normal processes and procedures for obtaining permissions for outdoor seating will apply.
Aberdeen City Council’s city growth and resources committee agreed in August that “the use of green spaces, carparks, parks, roads, etc. by private businesses for outdoor trading to cease from 23:59 on 24 January 2022 or to be regularised through the appropriate processes”.
Any businesses wishing to continue with their outdoor space must apply for the appropriate permissions before 25 January.
The information for applying for permissions for businesses can be found here.
Winter Vigilance Campaign
As the nights draw in, and we turn our attention to the festive season, Counter Terrorism Policing (CTP) is calling on businesses and the public to play their part in mitigating the threat from terrorism. The recent attack outside Liverpool Women’s Hospital and the attack which tragically took the life of Sir David Amess MP sadly reminds us all that the threat from terrorism is real and has not gone away.
The CTP are asking businesses to support the Winter Vigilance campaign and amplify safety and security messaging. Businesses are able to access a toolkit, which includes creative materials for use on digital screens, poster sites and social channels, and messaging to remind staff, customers and visitors what to do if they notice suspicious activity. Full details can be found here.
Spot anti-social behaviour, call 101!
As the city centre gets busier, we have been made aware there has also been a rise in anti-social behaviour especially surrounding fast-food outlets, the City Church Yard and on the top deck of the Bon Accord Centre.
We strongly recommend our levy payers utilise the 101 system to report all concerning incidents. This is critical to ensuring that Police Scotland are fully aware of the issues in the city centre and can resource them appropriately.
Aberdeen Inspired are always willing to help assist our levy payers and wish to know about these concerns, however, we are not a substitute for reporting incidents to the police.
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