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Businesses vote to continue Preston BID’s funding for five years

Posted on - 9th December, 2011 - 9:18am | Author - | Posted in - Business, News

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An organisation which helps to promote business in Preston has been given a vote of approval by local businesses.

Preston’s Business Improvement District, or BID, has been extended for another five years after two and a half years of helping to improve the city centre business offering.

The organisation promotes events in the city centre and brings attractions such as the Christmas Market to the city.

BID is funded by local businesses who pay in an additional business rate every year which is re-invested in the city centre by the Chamber of Commerce.

The vote means an extra £2.2 million is now available to be spent on improving the city centre.

Chief executive of the North & Western Lancashire Chamber of Commerce, Babs Murphy, welcomed the decision.

She said: “This result sends out a very clear message to businesses and investors that things are now starting to happen in our City.

“Businesses told us that they wanted the Preston BID to deliver a range of activity that increases footfall, dwell time, and spend per head in the city centre. They also told us that they wanted the city centre to be a clean, welcoming, and safe place to be.

“We have delivered on that promise but there is much more to be done. This mandate gives us the opportunity to add to what has already been achieved.

“We realise however, that we’ve got a tough challenge to convince those businesses who either voted No or abstained in the ballot that the BID will deliver real and demonstrable benefits to their business. We’ve now got a further five years to achieve this. Our message, therefore, to those who continue to doubt the BID is to work with us to deliver real change. After the next five years we’re convinced that Preston will be in a much stronger position that it is now.”

Preston City Council also added their support for BID’s work.

Leader of the council Peter Rankin said: “We are absolutely delighted that Preston businesses have once again voted in favour of the Business Improvement District (BID). This investment is exactly what the city needs during these difficult times. As a Council we are looking forward to working with the BID team again to invest in the city and move Preston forward.”

Image credit to George D Thompson

What do you think about the continuing of BID? Are you a local business? What do you think? Let us know your views in the comments below

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