Voting papers have now started to land with almost 500 city centre businesses – all of which are members of the city’s Business Improvement District (BID) – with each having until July 4, 2019, to cast their votes.
CH1ChesterBID published its business plan for 2019-24 in April, featuring a range of new and ongoing improvements it wants to make across the city centre.
The plan aims to build on the success of the last five years and also incorporates a range of new actions, including improved digital infrastructure for city centre Wi-Fi and a unique Chester Gift Card to further support independents and high street stores.
CH1ChesterBID was originally elected in 2014 and since then has been a driving force for many city centre initiatives, festivals and annual events, which have helped to increase footfall, dwell time and consumer spending in the city centre.
Carl Critchlow, CH1ChesterBID Manager, said: “It’s been an exciting process working closely with our businesses to develop our next five-year plan, but now we need their support to give us the backing to put them into action.
“During the last five years we really have achieved a lot, but we’re not an organisation that wants to rest on its laurels. We want to continuously innovate and develop, so we’re always looking to meet the needs of the ever-changing high street and look after the best interests of our members – the shops, bars, restaurants and other businesses that we all know and love in Chester.
“The ‘yes’ vote will ensure our team can carry on with our work and build on it, with some really exciting new plans. We can’t stress enough the importance of businesses completing their ballot papers and returning them before July 4. Every vote really matters to us.
“Over the next few weeks, we’ll be taking to the streets and Rows, with members of Cheshire West and Chester Council to collect completed ballot papers. Our team will be out and about from 9:30am – 1:00pm on Thursday, June 13, Tuesday, June 18 and 25, as well as July 2.”
CH1ChesterBID is also responsible or organising and implementing seasonal children’s trails throughout the city, including trails for Easter, summer and Halloween.
The BID team work closely with key partners in Chester, including Cheshire West Council to bring additional events to the city, including the Christmas parades and CheSTAR; which has become a much-loved festive decoration in the city centre.
Over £2million in private sector investment would be generated for city centre improvements over the next five years if CH1ChesterBID secures another ‘yes’ vote from local businesses when the ballot papers are counted in July.
Carl continued: “Whether it’s Monica and Luka providing local insight to visitors of the city, our city centre manager spearheading another year of Purple Flag activity; our events manager organising children’s trails to entertain Chester’s families; or our marketing manager providing crucial marketing support for our businesses, we all work together with Chester’s best interests at the heart of everything we do.
“We truly hope our work so far has created something special which we can all build upon – one which our businesses can be proud of and one which they’ll want to see continue over the next five years.”
All businesses within the designated BID catchment zone with a rateable value over £18,000 will be eligible to vote as part of the re-ballot. In order to be successful, the BID vote has to achieve at least 51 per cent of the total rateable value and 51 per cent of the eligible businesses need to take part.
For more information on the work that CH1ChesterBID plans to achieve over the next five years, visit www.ch1chesterbid.co.uk