Over 50 businesses attended last night’s Open Event at Casa Rastelli in the Marketgate Shopping Centre.
The businesses came to hear about Lancaster Business Improvement District (BID) renewal campaign and what they can all do together, as a body of businesses owners, to improve the city centre and trading environment in Lancaster. If the BID’s ballot campaign is successful and they receive enough yes votes in terms of both majority by number and majority by rateable value, the new Lancaster BID will operate from April 2016 to March 2021.
BID Manager Liz Hickingbotham said: ” If successful at re-ballot, we will see almost 370 businesses coming together to create a pot of over £1.2 Million which will be invested in the city centre over the next five years. But it is important to remember than this isn’t council money, it is additional money to what is already being provided by the city and county councils, so it is adding value to the city.
But a BID is about more than the money. A BID builds and strengthens relationships across the city and within the local authority and other public services. It offers businesses an opportunity to lead the direction of projects taking place in Lancaster. The BID represents the businesses as one city with one voice.
There are now over 200 successful BIDs operating in the UK, raising in excess of £100 million each year from the private sector. In our region, there are active BIDs in Preston, Blackpool, Skipton, Kendal, Blackburn, Penrith and Southport with BIDs now being developed in Morecambe and Ulverston.
I would urge all eligible businesses to Vote YES for the BID and together we will continue to deliver results in Lancaster city centre.”
Mark Cutter, Proprietor of The Robert Gillow, The Juke Joint and The Bottle Shop added:
“I didn’t initially support the BID and used to complain to Paul [chairman]. Then I thought ‘instead of complaining, what can I do to get involved?’ So I joined the management group. My initial view was wrong and the BID have been doing a lot of things to promote the city. It seems simple to me that for 1.5% of my business rates we get a lot more back. I believe in competition by cooperation and the fact that we need a vibrant city for all of us to survive. That, for me, is what the BID embodies: it’s not about an extra tax it’s about having control, as a community of business owners, over the things that are done here.”
The business owners also got an exclusive first look at the new Primark site where work is currently ongoing by local contractors Askam Civil Engineering Ltd. Askam are expecting to hand over the site in January 2016 to allow Primark to fit shop interiors. The new Primark store is expected to be open to the public in late Spring 2016.
Company Information: Lancaster BID
Lancaster Business Improvement District (BID) has been set up by the city centre businesses to promote and improve the trading environment in Lancaster. Lancaster BID works towards three main goals:
- Promoting Lancaster
- Improving Lancaster
- Supporting Special Projects in Lancaster
Working to these goals, we develop our own initiatives as well as supporting projects proposed by other organisations where here is a prospect of them becoming self-funding in future years.
Lancaster BID (Business Improvement District)
F1, City Lab
4-6 Dalton Square
E: [email protected]
T: 01524 590650