Survey Highlights Preston's Improvements • Preston Guild City
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Preston Guild City

Shoppers down Preston Fishergate high street.

Preston feels safe and the high street is a 'better place'...

According to a survey carried out by the Preston City Centre Business Improvements District (BID), almost 85% of respondents feel that Preston city centre is a 'safe place to be'.

As part of its manifesto, BID pledged to conduct the survey of Preston visitors each year, with a total of 505 responses in 2018.

Of those surveyed, 60% rated the city's leisure offer as good or very good, with 49% stating the city's galleries/museums and culture were of good quality.

52% of respondents thought the high street was 'a better place to be' following improvements made to Fishergate; an increase of over 10% on the previous year.

What others had to say

John Boydell, BID Chair:

"The survey underlines the positivity around Preston city centre. Tens of thousands of people are using the city centre on a weekly basis. More than 45% of survey respondents who visited the city centre live out of town, proving that visiting Preston is a conscious decision. We were pleased to read that almost 70% of respondents are acutely aware of the BID’s work with 75% believing the body adds value to the city.

“Since we launched this survey back in 2010, we have seen a shift in public opinion and attitude towards Preston and, while there is always more work to be done, stakeholders continue to make positive strides towards a more prosperous city centre.”

Andrew Stringer, Manager of St. George’s Shopping Centre & Chair of the City Retail Forum:

“I am delighted that this year’s survey shows increased positivity. There’s a palpable energised feel to the city at the moment”.

Andy Coverdale, University of Central Lancashire (UCLan), chair of the city’s Business Crime Reduction Partnership:

“The survey results demonstrate what many people in Preston already know; our city centre is predominantly a safe place to be. The recently improved street-scene is a major positive for the city and has never looked better. I, and many other people that I speak to are optimistic about Preston’s future.”

Leader of Preston City Council, Councillor Matthew Brown, said:

“The results of the city centre survey are very positive for Preston and underline the efforts of not only the council but other stakeholders too.

“We are continuously striving to ensure the city is a great place to live, work and visit so it’s great knowing that people agree and also feel safe.

“Exciting new and ongoing developments at the Harris and the Markets quarter strengthen the city’s recent title of most improved city along with our passion to build an inclusive economy.”

Margaret Mason, independent Florist on Friargate:

“It is wonderful to know that people’s perceptions of Preston city centre match my belief that this is a great place to do business”.

Further survey details

The BID's general public survey used a sample of 505 people. Surveys were completed by individuals via an online link. All field work took place between April and October 2018.

Age range



15-24 22 20
25-34 37 42
35-44 55 47
45-54 64 62
55-64 51 45
65+ 33 27
Total 262 243