Thousand of visitors enjoyed themselves as Birmingham’s ‘Golden Mile’ reopened for the first time in more than three months on Saturday 4 July.
The boss of one of the biggest entertainment districts in the Midlands said that the vast majority of an estimated total of 8,000 visitors across the day and night had behaved responsibly.
Mike Olley, general manager of Westside Business Improvement District (BID), said social distancing guidelines had worked well in more than a dozen bars and restaurants that had reopened.
He also praised his street wardens, West Midlands Police and West Midlands Ambulance Service for the professional way they dealt with the tiny number of revellers who caused issues – although no arrests were made.
Mr Olley said: “Saturday was a fine day where around 8,000 people attended the area.
“All our venues that opened had good social distancing guidelines in place which respected COVID-19 risks and worked well.
“It was all very different to what we are used to but it was effective in protecting staff and visitors.
“There were of course a couple of individuals who took things to excess but they were professionally dealt with and there were no arrests as far as we understand.”
Mr Olley had organised a ‘street briefing’ at 4pm on Saturday where a full shift of his most experienced street wardens had met with police, ambulance teams and bar owners to discuss detailed plans like door policies and pedestrian flows as the evening was about to get under way.
He added: “we had hoped that things would go well and we were not disappointed. It was a good starting point and things can only get better.”
By Steve Dyson.