Businesses in Lichfield have voted in favour of a scheme that is set to deliver £1 million investment in a range of exciting city centre projects over the next five years.
Hundreds of businesses have backed the plan to set-up a Lichfield Business Improvement District (BID), having been voting for the past month.
It is hoped the Lichfield BID will improve the Lichfield experience, increase footfall and enhance business performance.
Over 79% of businesses who voted supported establishing a BID in the city centre, and the yes votes represented 83% of the rateable value in the city.
The money will come from each business paying between 1 and 1.5 percent levy on the rateable value of each company to a newly formed BID company, depending on whether or not they are in a serviced area.
“I am absolutely delighted that so many businesses have backed the plans that we put together,” said Paul Maddox, Chairman of the BID project and owner of The Scales and Three Spires Coffee Shop.
“The BID represents a really bright future for Lichfield and by working together, we will be able to achieve great things for the city with this £1 million of investment over the next five years.
“I would like to thank everyone who has supported these proposals, the voters first and foremost, but also the other members of the steering group who have put in hundreds of hours of work over the last 12 months to get us to this position today. I’d also like to thank our BID Development Manager, Michelle Baker at Regen Management, and the team at Lichfield District Council for supporting us along the way.”
Michelle Baker, BID consultant, said: “We have lots of work ahead of us over the next eight weeks, but the BID will be good and ready to start delivering business and customer benefits to Lichfield and we look forward to working alongside the businesses in the coming months.”
Lichfield BID will formally launch on 1 October 2015. It will be incorporated as a company limited by guarantee and its board of volunteer directors will be drawn from the businesses in the BID area. Projects will include marketing and promotion to draw in new customers, free WIFI for businesses and shoppers and parking initiatives. These will be funded by the levy which will be paid annually by all eligible businesses in the area.
Among the BID’s first tasks will be to recruit a city centre manager, secure office premises, and draw up detailed operating plans for the first 12 months.
For more information and to view the five-year BID business plan, visit www.lichfieldbid.co.uk or call Michelle Baker, Lichfield BID Development Manager, on 07527 016338.