Businesses set out their £2million plan for Tamworth

The £2million business plan detailing how Tamworth can be improved as a more vibrant and welcoming place to work, shop, stay and play is now being finalised, ready for putting to the ballot in October.
The plan to create a Business Improvement District covering Tamworth town centre, the Ventura retail parks and the riverside area in between, is now entering its final phase with the creation of the key document.
It sets out how the potential budget of £2million can be spent over the next five years; delivering improvements identified by the businesses of Tamworth.
The business plan marks the culmination of months of consultation, involving 330 business visits, 120 surveys and interviews, several workshops and countless meetings and discussions to find out what the problems facing Tamworth businesses are and how they can be addressed.
All that information has been fed in to the business plan, which sets out how the potential budget of £2million can be used to deliver projects to the benefit of the whole area. The £2million is based on all businesses with a rateable value of £12,000 or more, each contributing 1.25% of their rateable value to the pot each year.
The final plan will be revealed to businesses in the BID zone at a special launch event taking place at Tamworth Castle on Wednesday, September 6, from 5.30pm.
The development of a BID is being driven by a steering group of business representatives from a cross section of industries.
Steering group Chairman, Rob Holder, manager of John Lewis Tamworth, said: “This is an exciting time for businesses as it presents a great opportunity for them to take hold of the future of Tamworth and shape the town in a way which is going to benefit them. It will raise the profile of Tamworth, locally, regionally and nationally and help to re-establish some pride in what we have here.
“This is our chance to make a real difference to the town and put it on the map as a thriving area to visit, shop and do business.”
The over-riding desire for businesses from across the whole of Tamworth was to develop the town’s identity and promote the unique retail, leisure and heritage experience which Tamworth has to offer – with 78% of respondents saying that this would help their business.
Proposals within the business plan include measures to promote the town, retail parks and riverside areas as a single entity and raise its profile, locally and nationally. It includes a range of proposals including organising more events and markets, more festive lighting, floral displays and art, introducing uniformed guides to help promote the area, developing the town’s heritage appeal, working with other bodies to improve the experience of travelling and parking in the area and developing a diverse evening and night time economy.
Samantha Panton, owner of Roasters and Vice Chair of the BID Steering Group, said: “Tamworth is such a great place with an outstanding retail offer in the Ventura area, a leisure offer around the river area which includes the fantastic SnowDome and of course the castle and the heritage and specialist retail of the town. Unfortunately, we do not make the most of these things or tell people about what we have here and changing this is at the heart of the entire business plan.”
Businesses identified key priority areas for a new BID which fall into four project groups:

1. Well promoted
2. Welcoming and accessible
3. Lively and attractive
4. A great business and leisure offer

Objective 1 is about developing and promoting the strengths and characteristics of Tamworth and raising awareness of its retail, leisure and heritage experience locally, regionally and nationally. The key activities identified in the plan include the promotion of different elements of Tamworth – the town, retail parks and riverside – as one single entity.
Objective 2 aims to make Tamworth a more accessible and welcoming place for visitors, workers and residents to explore. Traffic flows around Ventura were a particular issue, along with pedestrian signage to the different areas. This initiative will also see the introduction of uniformed hosts to welcome visitors and support events across the area.
Objective 3 will see the BID supporting and managing events and markets which attract people to the town, but also ensure that businesses benefit from them. The BID also recognises that the heritage of Tamworth is something to value and will work with others to ensure that the area makes more of this.
Objective 4 aims to bring about an improvement in the range and quality of retail and leisure offer and encourage more investment into the town, to boost both the daytime and night-time economies.
If you are business within the BID zone and would like to attend the launch event on September 6, please email enquiries@bidtamworth.co.uk or phone 01827 214131. More information about BID Tamworth is available at http://www.bidtamworth.co.uk.

 

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Businesses asked for their ideas to help shape the future of Tamworth

Businesses are being encouraged to attend workshops, complete surveys and take part in one-to-one interviews as part of ongoing work to develop the town to become a Business Improvement District (BID).

Their feedback will be used to help develop the BID as a vehicle for making Tamworth a more attractive place to visit, shop and explore, by identifying current issues faced by businesses and new ideas to promote and development the area.

Rob Holder, manager of John Lewis Tamworth and Chair of the BID Steering Group, which is leading the project, said: “Tamworth is rich in history and is a great place to visit, but people beyond the region only tend to think of Tamworth as a small town and a retail park. We have some great businesses here, both large and small, and we want to change people’s perceptions and improve their experience of Tamworth.”

The BID team, which is led by local business representatives, is in the process of interviewing businesses within the proposed BID boundary, covering the town centre and retail parks, and holding workshops to identify the improvements that will be addressed through the BID. These will potentially include improving the experience of people who visit the town, the riverside and Ventura retail parks, as well as developing new ways to promote the whole town more widely in the future.

Questionnaires have been sent to more than 700 businesses in the proposed BID boundary and a series of workshops are being held next week, when businesses in that area will be able to find out more and share their views.

Workshops take place on:

Wednesday, February 15

8am-9.30am – The Globe Inn, Lower Gungate

12.30pm – 2pm – Ankerside Management Suite, Ankerside Shopping Centre

5.30pm-7pm – M&S, Ventura Park

Thursday, February 16

2pm-3.30pm – Holiday Inn Express, Riverside area

5.30pm-7pm – The Globe Inn, Lower Gungate

Rob said: “A BID can only be successful if we have the support of the majority of businesses within it, and for that to happen we need their views about the current challenges they are facing and any ideas they have that can bring about change. Their feedback will then shape the content of a BID Business Plan which will be put out to a vote in October.

“I would urge every business which has received a survey to fill it in. We can send someone to help fill in that form if needed. I would also encourage everyone to attend at least one of the workshops to find out more because if everyone gets on board, the BID has the potential to become the catalyst for real change in Tamworth.

“As a Steering Group, we hear lots of people discussing the problems Tamworth is facing as a town, both in the town centre and on the retail parks; well this is your chance to really try and make a lasting change.”

The team is also working closely with Tamworth Borough Council to identify the services already provided through the rates system to ensure any BID activity carried out is only over and above that which the council is already obliged to deliver.

Rob said, “It is essential that the activity delivered by BID is additional to the work of the council. In places where BIDs are already established, it has been proven that if the BID works with the local authority it can drive even more value from the services they deliver in addition to the activity of the BID itself.”

Vice chair, Samantha Panton of Roasters, added: “The Steering Group members are all passionate about Tamworth and have a strong commitment to the economic success of the town and every business within it. We want all businesses to have an opportunity to express their views about the activities they would like to see in the BID business plan over the next five years. This is a one off opportunity and I urge all businesses to get involved in this exciting project.”

The project to develop the BID is being supported with funds from Tamworth Borough Council.

All businesses are encouraged to complete the online or paper surveys and attend the workshops. Online copies, and more information, is available from http://www.tamworthbid.co.uk, email enquiries@bidtamworth.co.uk or phone 01332 419051.

Notes for Editors:

  • There are now over 260 BIDs across England since being introduced in 2004. These have had an average turnout of 30% to 50% of the business with 70% of the businesses voting in favour
  • BIDs bring together businesses and other stakeholders in a defined geographical town, so they can develop projects and activities which will help boost the local economy
  • The funding is used to appoint consultants to help local partnerships develop a BID proposal. The consultants guide, advise and support the local partnerships to give each proposal the best possible chance for success
  • The organisations in the proposed BID town will vote on whether to pay an additional levy. If they vote yes, a new BID will be created and the levy will pay for its activities and projects
  • BIDs are funded by local businesses through a levy on their rates bill
  • They see improvements to business profitability and turnover which would not have happened without a BID
  • Businesses will identify the town and the issues and put together a proposal which should include delivery guarantees, performance indicators and management structure
  • The plan voted for has a lifespan of 5 years and further proposals have to be reaffirmed through a further vote
  • There are two criteria which have to be achieved for the vote to be successful: more than 50% of the number of businesses who vote have to say yes and more than 50% of the rateable value of the businesses who vote have to say yes

Businesses explore the future of Tamworth

Businesses from across Tamworth town centre and the Ventura retail parks came together for the first time to discover how plans for a Business Improvement District could help make Tamworth a more attractive place to visit, shop and explore.

The launch event, held at Vinyl & Kuda, gave businesses the chance to hear what a BID is and to see some examples of how BIDs are successfully transforming towns in other parts of the country.

A variety of businesses attended including independent and national retailers, café and restaurateurs, bankers, accountants, night club managers and other service businesses.

As well as finding out how a BID could improve Tamworth as a destination, those in attendance were able to meet members of the BID Tamworth Steering Group – representatives of a cross section of businesses who are volunteering their time to pursue the plans.

Rob Holder, chairman of the BID Tamworth Steering Group and manager of John Lewis Tamworth, and vice chairman Samantha Panton of Roasters – which has businesses in both the town centre and Ventura Park – told guests how important they believe a BID is for Tamworth and how they hope businesses will get on board with the project.

Rob said: “A Business Improvement District presents a great opportunity for businesses to shape the future of Tamworth. We think that all the town’s different sectors, long standing business communities and newly launched companies will see the benefit of a BID, because this project is simply ‘by business for business’.”

Ian Ferguson of pfbb UK (Partnerships for Better Business Ltd) gave a deeper insight into how and why a BID could benefit Tamworth, using Derby’s Cathedral Quarter as an example. Since the BID launched and created the ‘Cathedral Quarter’ identity, businesses have benefited from more visitors, more retail spend and new companies moving to the area.

Partnerships for Better Business Ltd develops and manages successful BIDs across the UK and has been commissioned to support Tamworth on its BID journey.

The floor was then opened to questions, with several businesses engaging in the discussions, revealing there is an appetite for a BID in Tamworth.

If successful, the plans would see businesses within a defined geographical area working together to identify and implement projects they feel would benefit the local economy and community. The partnership could generate hundreds of thousands of pounds to be spent on making the town a more vibrant and welcoming place to work, shop, stay and play.

Although the BID boundary will be determined through more detailed consultation with businesses, the aim is for Tamworth town centre, its retail parks and the attractive ‘riverside’ leisure offering in between, to unite under one umbrella for the mutual benefit of all.

Although a BID is entirely business-led and would provide services and improvements over and above those that councils are required to provide, Tamworth Borough Council is supportive of the initiative and has helped fund the development of the proposals.

The council’s Cabinet member for Regeneration, Cllr Steve Claymore, said: “A successful BID can drive improvements to a town centre, giving businesses a collective voice in how their money is spent. It would encourage visitors and make our town an attractive place to live, work and do business.”

Rob added: “The BID Tamworth Steering Group is very pleased that the council is so supportive of this project, which gives a promising future for businesses in Tamworth. In January, we will start meeting with as many businesses as possible to explore their issues and concerns in depth. This will start to provide the information necessary to develop the BID Business Plan so that issues can be addressed and businesses can be supported in taking advantage of the opportunities Tamworth BID would have to offer. Members of the general public will also be asked for their views on the future of Tamworth.”

To find out more, please visit www.tamworthbid.co.uk, email enquiries@bidtamworth.co.uk or phone 01332 419051.

Notes for Editors:

  • BIDs are part of the government’s long-term strategy to encourage partnership working between a Local Authority and the business community.
  • BIDs are an investment in the local trading environment through the provision of added value services
  • BIDs are funded by local businesses through a levy on their rates bill, therefore all beneficiaries pay
  • They see improvements to business profitability and turnover which would not have happened without a BID
  • Businesses will identify the area and the issues and put together a proposal which should include delivery guarantees, performance indicators and management structure
  • The plan voted for has a lifespan of 5 years and further proposals have to be reaffirmed through a further vote
  • There are now over 230 BIDs across the country, which have an average of 70% of the businesses voting in favour
  • There are two criteria which have to be achieved for the vote to be successful: more than 50% of the number of businesses who vote have to say yes and more than 50% of the rateable value of the businesses who vote have to say yes
  • pfbb UK are BID specialists based in Derby, appointed by the BID Tamworth Steering Group to support them in the development of the BID Proposal and Business Plan.

For all media enquiries contact: Linda Ram email Linda@ProCopyCreation.co.uk or telephone 01827 67042.

 

Tamworth businesses invited to launch of BID project

Businesses in Tamworth are being invited to find out more about how a Business Improvement District could benefit the area at a launch event being held in the town on November 1st.

Invitations have been sent to town centre, riverside and retail park businesses in and around the current proposed BID boundary. The event will provide an opportunity to learn more about the project and to discuss how businesses can get involved in developing the BID as a vehicle for making Tamworth a more attractive place to visit, shop and explore.

It will also provide an opportunity to meet members of the BID Tamworth Steering Group, which is made up of representatives of the Tamworth business community, covering a cross section of industries.

The launch event marks the beginning of the next phase of development in establishing a BID after an initial feasibility study, conducted through interviews with Tamworth businesses, revealed an appetite for a more joined up business community.

Chairman of the BID Tamworth Steering Group, Rob Holder, said: “I would encourage all businesses in the area to attend the launch event. We know there is a lot of work to do to get the BID Business Plan right and to make sure that it is going to benefit businesses from across the whole area. That is why need businesses from all sectors to get involved from the outset. That way we can identify the issues they see as barriers to their success and consider what a BID could do to address those concerns.”

Rob, who is manager of Tamworth’s John Lewis store, added: “As a result of the information gathered from the feasibility study, the Steering Group has already made some key decisions around the focus for the development of the BID proposal. It is really important to identify a role for the town and to build upon its strengths. Besides shopping, the town has the potential to be a hub for culture, using its heritage to develop its appeal to tourists.”

Rob also highlighted the fact that many perceived the river as a gap between the Ventura retail parks and the town centre, whereas the area around the river is actually a key leisure destination which includes the Snow Dome, the Football Club, the cinema, Namco Funscape and the Castle Grounds, where many events take place.

“We are very fortunate that Tamworth has the potential to be a really attractive place to appeal to people for all sorts of reasons. We just need to make sure those reasons are being exploited to their full potential,” he added.

Although Ventura retail parks have key retailers, businesses there say they have their own challenges with parking and access, as well as simply making people from further afield aware that the place exists.

The BID Tamworth Steering Group believes the timing of the BID is such that it will be well placed to work closely with different organisations including Tamworth Borough Council, the Police and large leisure operators, retailers and other investors to ensure that Tamworth businesses of all sizes and from all sectors can play a key role in not only identifying the future direction, but in developing and delivering projects which will contribute towards a vibrant and exciting Tamworth.

Anyone from a business interested in attending the launch event is asked to call 01332 419051 (pfbb UK) or email enquiries@bidtamworth.co.uk.

Notes for Editors:

  • BIDs are part of the government’s long-term strategy to encourage partnership working between a Local Authority and the business community.
  • BIDs are an investment in the local trading environment through the provision of added value services
  • BIDs are funded by local businesses through a levy on their rates bill, therefore all beneficiaries pay
  • They see improvements to business profitability and turnover which would not have happened without a BID
  • Businesses will identify the area and the issues and put together a proposal which should include delivery guarantees, performance indicators and management structure
  • The plan voted for has a lifespan of 5 years and further proposals have to be reaffirmed through a further vote
  • There are now over 230 BIDs across the country, which have an average of 70% of the businesses voting in favour
  • There are two criteria which have to be achieved for the vote to be successful: more than 50% of the number of businesses who vote have to say yes and more than 50% of the rateable value of the businesses who vote have to say yes
  • pfbb UK are BID specialists based in Derby, appointed by the BID Tamworth Steering Group to support them in the development of the BID Proposal and Business Plan.

For all media enquiries contact: Linda Ram e mail Linda@ProCopyCreation.co.uk or telephone 01827 67042.

Tamworth businesses complete first phase towards BID development

The BID Tamworth Steering Group, made up of a range of leisure, retail and professional service businesses from across the town centre and the Ventura retail parks, have completed a feasibility study into assessing the opportunity for developing the area into a Business Improvement District or BID.

pfbb UK, BID specialists based in Derby, undertook the study assessing business views from those in the old town and the retail parks along with consideration of key challenges facing the area.

“Key findings from the report confirm many of the issues we already knew about,” said Rob Holder Chair of the Steering Group.  “However, we have also been able to identify those things which need to be considered in more detail. This will enable us to explore ideas with businesses for working together and delivering new projects which will make a real difference to the visitor experience and the attractiveness of Tamworth as a place to live, work, visit and invest.”

The overall feeling gathered as part of the study was that Tamworth town centre has seen a general decline over the last few years both in its retail offer and its night life and has lost out to Ventura with large retail brands re-locating from the old town and the town centre shopping mall of Ankerside, to the retail parks, which has a bigger retail offer and free parking.

Although Tamworth town centre has recorded declining footfall over the last ten years of around 29%, since the development of Ventura, this is in line with many towns and city centres across the country.

The old town centre of Tamworth is divided from Ventura, not only physically by the rivers, but in the way in which it is used and by those who visit. There has been a strong desire for a number of years to try and address this physical divide through improvements to the public realm, bus links and innovative travel initiatives and other ideas.

Although there have been some improvements to the links between the two areas, there is currently no framework which brings businesses together with any sense of common purpose.

Rob said: “It has been encouraging in many respects that the study found there is a desire from businesses to build on the heritage, leisure and specialist retail offer of the town and the large national retail brands of Ventura and bring all businesses together as a community.

“It was also clear that although some had seen Ventura as a reason for the town’s demise, businesses now seem to see it as an opportunity to take advantage of the people it brings to the area as a whole and get them to explore the town’s heritage and leisure offer.

“This polarisation between the old town and the more recent retail parks could be seen as a challenge, but actually we see this as an opportunity to promote the fact that Tamworth has more to offer than most, with a nationally acclaimed Snow Dome and a town centre rich in heritage; it has the potential to focus on specialist retail, cafes and restaurants and become a real tourism and cultural hub with the out of centre shopping parks providing a massive retail offer,” Rob added.

The report highlighted the fact that even retail parks are having to re-invent themselves as places to enjoy and have great ‘experiences’ if they are to retain visitor numbers and that the success of the Ventura retail parks cannot be taken for granted. Their environment is not pedestrian friendly and creates a negative perception at peak periods when the roads are gridlocked and there is insufficient parking space.

The report puts Tamworth into context of the issues and challenges facing all towns and cities across the UK as they try to come to terms with the changes in lifestyle, increased use of the internet for shopping and increasing ability for people to travel to competing places to enjoy themselves.

It highlights that leisure activity and the ability to offer a great experience is even more important than ever if towns and cities are to be economically vibrant.

Rob continued: “Even though Tamworth is a relatively small town, it has a strong leisure offer with its Snow Dome, a town centre location for its football stadium, as well as its rich heritage and castle and beautiful riverside location. With our proximity to Drayton Manor Park, Tamworth is really well placed to develop into a place where people are not simply coming to Tamworth for just one thing, but actually stay longer and take advantage of all it has to offer.”

The Steering Group ‘BID Tamworth’ believe that the timing of the BID is such that it will be well placed to work closely with different organisations including Tamworth Borough Council, the police and large leisure operators, retailers and other investors to ensure that Tamworth businesses of all sizes can play a key role in not only identifying the future direction but in developing and delivering projects which will contribute towards a vibrant and exciting Tamworth.

The BID Tamworth Steering Group is about to move into the main development phase of the BID where businesses from across the town and the retail parks will be invited to a launch event in the next few weeks. The event will provide an opportunity to learn more about the project and how businesses can get involved in developing the BID plan for the future.

Notes for Editors:

  • BIDs are part of the government’s long-term strategy to encourage partnership working between a Local Authority and the business community
  • BIDs are an investment in the local trading environment through the provision of added value services
  • BIDs are funded by local businesses through a levy on their rates bill, therefore all beneficiaries pay
  • They see improvements to business profitability and turnover which would not have happened without a BID
  • Businesses will identify the area and the issues and put together a proposal which should include delivery guarantees, performance indicators and management structure
  • The plan voted for has a lifespan of 5 years and further proposals will have to be reaffirmed through a further vote
  • There are now over 230 BIDs across the country, which have an average of 70% of the businesses voting in favour
  • There are two criteria which have to be achieved for the vote to be successful: more than 50% of the number of businesses who vote have to say yes and more than 50% of the rateable value of the businesses who vote have to say yes

For all media enquiries contact: Linda Ram e mail Linda@ProCopyCreation.co.uk or telephone 01827 67042

Businesses in exciting ‘BID’ to unite Tamworth town centre and Ventura retail parks

Plans could generate hundreds of thousands of pounds to boost trade and footfall

Exciting plans have been revealed to create a new partnership of Tamworth businesses which could generate hundreds of thousands of pounds to be spent on making the town a more vibrant and welcoming place to work, shop, stay and play.

If successful, the plans would see businesses within a defined geographical area – called a Business Improvement District (BID) – working together to identify and implement projects they feel would benefit the local economy and community.

Although the area to be put forward for BID status will be determined through consultation with businesses within a proposed BID zone, the aim is for Tamworth’s town centre and retail parks to unite under one umbrella for the mutual benefit of the whole area.

Businesses within a designated BID contribute to the pot through a small levy – typically between one per cent and two per cent of their rateable value – and all those included can have a say in determining the level at which this should be set and how the money should be spent.

There are currently more than 200 BIDs operating across the UK, generating millions of pounds that is being spent on projects designed to increase footfall and boost trade such as marketing and promotion, festivals and events, new street furniture, floral displays, Christmas lights, extra CCTV and additional street cleaning.

All services/improvements have to be in addition to those already provided by local authorities.

However, a BID can only be introduced if a majority of rate-paying businesses in the proposed zone vote in favour of it through a formal ballot process.

Tamworth’s BID journey is being led by like-minded individuals from a variety of businesses within the proposed BID zone, including Ankerside Shopping Centre, John Lewis, Roasters, Tamworth Football Club, Kuda Nightclub, the Snowdome, Prizm Solutions, Handelsbanken and Ritchie and Ritchie Architects, who are volunteering their time to explore the plans. Tamworth Borough Council is supporting the businesses in developing the BID.

Manager of the Tamworth John Lewis store, Rob Holder, is chairing the BID Tamworth steering group with Samantha Panton of Roasters as vice chair.

Rob said: “This is about businesses from all sectors coming together to decide how we make Tamworth even better.

“The aim of the BID will be to determine how we develop Tamworth as a destination of choice and to get lots of great things happening under the same umbrella. On a personal level I I’m interested in the collective success of Tamworth because I can see how it benefits all.

“I see the BID as the glue that holds it all together. I’d urge businesses to lend their support to the BID proposals: this is your town, your business, your future, your voice – make sure you have your say.”

A key aim of the BID initiative would be to unify the town centre and the edge-of-town retail parks. Owner of Roasters, Samantha Panton, has businesses in both locations and is particularly keen to see a more joined up approach.

“My family has had a presence in the town centre since 1983 with John’s Bargains, which became Roasters in 1992,” Samantha said.

“In 2010 we became the only independent business on a retail park anywhere in the UK when we opened a restaurant at Ventura Park. This puts me in the unique position to be able to represent both interests and we are keen to give small independent businesses a voice and to ensure their concerns are addressed.

“For me, a BID is about bringing the town centre and retail parks together and linking them as one, rather than being two separate entities. A BID would give us the unique opportunity to be able to market and promote the area as one. For a small annual investment, businesses will be able to dip into a large pot of money that can be spent on projects and improvements over and above any services already provided by local authorities.”

pfbb UK, who are specialists in the development and delivery of Business Improvement Districts across the UK, have been appointed to support the businesses in developing the project.

Ian Ferguson, Director of pfbb UK said, “The lifetime of the BID is prescribed by BID Regulations and is set at no more than five years.  There are a number of BID areas which have been operating for more than five years and have gone through a renewal ballot. In most cases those BIDs going on to a second term have received an even greater endorsement in the vote than they did the first time. BIDs have brought significant improvements to the trading environment of the businesses based in these locations.”

Cllr Steve Claymore, Tamworth Borough Council’s Cabinet member for Regeneration, added: “The creation of a BID is a great opportunity for Tamworth. It will be a great way of driving the regeneration to which Tamworth Borough Council is committed, as well as attracting inward investment.

“This is really exciting news and I am very pleased that Tamworth Borough Council is supporting this initiative. The development of a BID will have far-reaching benefits, not just for the town centre, but for the whole borough of Tamworth.”

An initial feasibility study is now being carried out to gauge business support for the project. Subject to the findings, businesses across the whole area will be invited to a meeting about the plans. There will also be an extensive programme of surveys, individual meetings, workshops and forums to provide opportunities for businesses to identify key challenges they face and determine potential solutions.

FAQs – everything you need to know about BIDs

Q: What is a BID?

A: A BID is a Business Improvement District

BIDs are part of the Government’s long-term strategy to encourage partnership working between a local authority and the business community. A BID is a defined area within which rate-paying businesses decide on new improvements to help transform their area – and then vote to agree the investment. This money is then ring-fenced to provide the improvements agreed through the BID strategy.

BIDs see improvements to business profitability and turnover which would not have happened otherwise.

Essentially a BID is designed to be for the businesses, controlled by the businesses.

Q: What is the duration of a BID?

A: A BID normally lasts for five years. Some BIDs choose to run for three years. A BID can be renewed for future periods, but needs to go through a renewal process.

Q: Why Tamworth?

Tamworth town centre has had significant challenges over the last few years, but it is not alone; even the more recent development of the retail parks to the south are facing their own challenges as lifestyles continue to change rapidly. The town centre and its retail parks compete with other places for its catchment’s disposable income. Businesses in Tamworth need sustainable support to take advantage of its important strategic location and the unique visitor experience it can offer.

Through the BID, businesses could implement changes – chosen by them – to help improve the profile of businesses in the town centre and its adjacent retail parks. To improve links between them and encourage people to visit Tamworth more often and stay longer, leading to increased turnover and profits and a more vibrant economy across the whole town and surrounding area.

Q: Who will promote and manage the BID?

A: A new BID private limited company, which is limited by guarantee and has its own management board, would be established to administer the project. This is a not-for-profit company; board members would be made up of volunteer individuals who represent the cross section of businesses and organisations across the area. BID boards normally appoint a project manager and support staff to implement the projects identified in the plan.

These can be employed directly by the BID or via a specialist project management company which will also then offer strategic support.

Q: How will the BID be developed?

A: Businesses from the retail parks and the town centre have come together to create a representative body of people to develop this project. Called, ‘BID Tamworth’ it represents businesses from all business sectors, sizes and types and it has appointed BID specialists, Partnerships for Better Business Ltd (pfbb UK), to help develop a BID.

It is essential that the businesses in the area determine the activities and objectives of the BID Business Plan. A series of business interviews, workshops, surveys and other research will be carried out to determine:

  • What improvements businesses in Tamworth would like to make
  • Why people visit Tamworth and what would encourage them to visit more and stay longer

Using all the input from the businesses across the area, and working with BID Tamworth, pfbb UK will develop a business plan and lead local representatives and the local authority through the legal requirements to create the framework for the BID.

Improvements are made if the majority of ratepayers in a designated area approve them through a vote. This enables businesses to have a direct role in deciding what improvements should be made in their town. After five years, the businesses will vote again on whether they want the BID to continue and what they want to improve over the next five years.

Q: What area will the BID cover?

A: The BID boundary will be determined by you, the businesses, as part of the consultation process. The final decision will take into account key land marks, synergies between the different aspects of the town centre and the potential levy to be raised.

Q: What will the BID deliver?

A: The vision and objectives of the BID will be determined by you, the businesses, as part of the consultation process. They will be outlined in the business plan that you vote upon. The action plans drawn up during the BID’s lifetime will all relate back to these objectives.

The BID will deliver the changes and improvements that you and the other businesses in Tamworth identify. These might include targeted street clean-ups, improved signage, promotions and events to increase the profile of the area; all of which will help to drive customer visits and encourage longer stays. It might be specific targeted campaigns to support retailers and the leisure sector or professional services, commercial and industrial sectors or tackling issues relating to pedestrian access and the attractiveness and the use of the town itself.

However it is important to remember that the BID will not replace the existing services provided by the local authority– these will be bench-marked and monitored by the BID Company to ensure that the money generated through the BID is used for the improvements voted for by the businesses in the BID district.

Q: How will my business benefit?

A: You and the other businesses will identify the issues that will be tackled by the BID in the town. You can also be certain that the BID will:

  • Deliver a pragmatic and business driven agenda
  • Be business led
  • Benefit from effective partnership with the public sector
  • Deliver sustained investment to improve the town over a five-year period
  • Focus on achieving positive and measurable outcomes of benefit to all businesses

Q: How is the BID funded?

A: The development of the BID is being funded by Tamworth Borough Council. If the vote is successful, the BID itself is funded by the businesses in the BID district and aims to be both fair and transparent. If the majority of businesses vote for the BID, all businesses in the area will be subject to an additional levy to their rates. This overcomes the problem of a few businesses paying for improvements that benefit many. It is also hoped that the BID will serve as a catalyst for change and bring in more investment to the area.

Q: How much will it cost me as a business?

A: You will vote on how much money you want to pay towards the BID. A levy is charged to all businesses. This levy is based on the rateable value of your premises. On average this levy is usually set at between 1 and 2% of the rateable value. Typically a 1% levy in a town centre could possibly generate around £300,000 per annum which will be ring-fenced to make and manage the improvements that businesses have voted for.

A BID can decide on the structure and criteria of its levies and may wish to consider a flat rate, a tiered charging system or capped rates. This will be outlined in the business plan.

Q: Who will decide on whether our area becomes a BID?

A: You will – once the BID strategy has been drawn up, you will be asked to vote on whether you would like it to go ahead. For the BID to proceed, those who vote in favour must represent a majority of the vote by number of votes and aggregate rateable value.

Q: How can I stay informed and get involved?

A: Contact us to register your details to receive regular e-bulletins and updates about the BID’s progress and activities and participate in the consultations and working groups. A member of the project team is happy to talk with you and discuss the ways that you can get involved.