What is a Business Improvement District or BID?
BIDs are designed to improve the economic performance of an area. There are currently more than 200 BIDs in the UK with more on the way. BIDs create significant sums of investment across the UK and participating businesses and employers use the monies they gather through a small levy to pay for improvements that benefit businesses. Typically these include such items as improved public realm, Christmas lighting, special festivals, additional security, CCTV and local discount schemes for customers, local employers and their staff which all provide a better amenity for shoppers, employees and business visitors. Also, through joint working BIDs can help businesses make savings by bulk buying services such as utilities, increase opportunities for apprenticeships and work experience, and increase marketing activity to drive footfall and improve the overall perception of the town centre. The overall objective is to improve an area so that all business sectors benefit, whether shops, restaurants, offices or hotels and others.
There are many benefits for businesses becoming part of a BID. It enables businesses to buy in services above and beyond that which can be achieved through standard business rates. In this way they can promote themselves and the local area more effectively, attract more customers and increase both pedestrian flow and income. Vision Stockport wants to investigate the potential for a BID in the town centre to improve trading conditions, for example by physical improvements and by holding events and more marketing. They want to see if businesses themselves are keen on this model. Following this survey Vision Stockport wants to establish a Steering Group with local businesses to develop the concept further to make Stockport Town Centre a better place to work and visit.
We thank you very much for taking the time to participate and really appreciate hearing your views.