Big success at the BID’s first open meeting!

2 June 2015

Businesses in central Morecambe were given the opportunity to learn about what the big deal is with BIDs and how they can transform a town centre for the better.

The first Morecambe BID open meeting, held at the iconic art deco Midland Hotel on Wednesday 20th May, allowed Morecambe’s businesses to get to grips with Business Improvement Districts (BIDs). Morecambe BID Vice Chair and manager of the Arndale Centre Sue Byers guided those present through what a BID is, where businesses within a defined zone pay 1-2% of their rateable value into a funding pot. A business funded and business led initiative, contributors to the fund then decide together how this money will be spent to improve their town.

The presentation included case studies on how existing BIDs have a positive impact, including talks from Lancaster BID’s Vice Chair Jerry North and Southport BID Manager Andrew Sloman. The inspiring orators gave examples of their BIDs’ achievements to date: Lancaster BID helped secure £1 million towards refurbishing Lancaster’s pavements, while in Southport the newly-active BID has already saved businesses up to 40% on their core business costs.

The Chamber of Commerce then fed back the results of the survey being circulated to Morecambe’s businesses. The top priorities cited were prevention of crime and disorder, street repairs and cleaning, access to toilets, empty retail unit management, and CCTV. The steering group encouraged anyone who has not completed the survey to do so, so that the BID’s final business plan will fully reflect the needs and hopes of central Morecambe’s businesses.

Attending businesses responded positively to the prospect of a BID in Morecambe, with a handful of people even offering to be part of the steering group.

A spokesperson for the BID said; “We were really pleased that there was such a good turnout, as well as seeing all the support the BID has. A huge thank you to everyone who came to the meeting, and just a reminder that we always want to hear from Morecambe businesses if you have any questions or suggestions.”

For more information about BIDs, contact Vicky or Hannah on 01524 381331, or email [email protected].

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