The Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has called on employers to improve pay and working conditions for London’s night-time workers as new world-leading research shines a light on the changing nature of the capital’s thriving night life.
A comprehensive new study by City Hall and the Night Time Commission paints a detailed picture of London at night, the workers keeping the city moving, and how the capital’s nocturnal habits are changing.
The landmark report reveals that 1.6m Londoners – a third of the capital’s workers – usually work evenings and nights and that jobs in the night-time industries are growing faster than the wider economy.
However, more than half a million in occupations where they are likely to work at night, including more than half in the culture and leisure sector, are earning below the London Living Wage.
Those working at night are most likely to be male, aged 45-49 and living in inner London. The sectors employing the most employees at night are the health services, professional services and culture and leisure.
The findings show that two-thirds of Londoners are regularly active at night, including running errands and socialising and that there has been an increase in restaurants, cafes and takeaways open at night. However, the research also reveals that Londoners are drinking alcohol less regularly, and alcohol-related crime has fallen significantly in the last eight years.
The report lays bare the barriers preventing many people from making the most of London at night, with a third of Londoners saying activities are too expensive, while women, disabled people, and those on lower income feel less safe.
Overnight visitors to London spent £16.2bn in 2017. Four out of five visitors to the capital say culture and heritage is the main reason for their visit, and this research shows that going to restaurants is the most popular night-time experience for visitors, followed by sightseeing, going to pubs, the theatre and shopping.