It’s a ‘YES’ for Oswestry Business Improvement District
Businesses in Oswestry are celebrating following the announcement that the YES vote has been achieved for the Business Improvement District (BID) securing £1.5 million of funding for the town.
68% of votes cast voted in favour of the BID by total number of businesses, and 72% of votes cast voted in favour of the BID by Rateable Value.
Ian Follington, Chair of the Working Group which coordinated the development of the BID Proposal and Business Plan said, ‘I would like to take this opportunity to thank the Working Group members who have given freely of their time and worked hard over the last 18 months consulting with local businesses and stakeholders to develop the Business Plan. We would also like to gratefully acknowledge the support and funding of the Oswestry Town and Shropshire Councils. Oswestry BID could not have reached this point without their assistance. We would also like to thank our BID consultants, Partnerships For Better Business, for their patience and hard work throughout’.
Now Oswestry BID enters a new phase of activity in preparation for the start date of the 1st April 2018. Businesses will pay an annual levy and this collective pot of around £1.5 million over the next 5-year period will be ring fenced and invested in promoting and developing business in and around Oswestry. The current Board of the BID company will put together a transition plan from a Working Group to a functioning BID. As part of this they will contact BID members and begin the process of electing new Board members. The group would like to talk to any BID members who may be interested in joining the Board and helping successfully implement the Business Plan.
Ian said, ‘We are all very excited about the potential for Oswestry BID and would like to thank Oswestry businesses for their support and assure them we will deliver against the Business Plan as voted for in the ballot. We look forward to working together to move Oswestry forwards to make it recognized as a great place to be, as we all believe it deserves to be’
An excellent evening at the Oswestry BID Launch with a full-house of local business leaders hosted at North Shropshire College’s excellent Board Room.
Speakers included Allister Moutrie, Sainsbury’s Oswestry Store Manager; Ian Follington, BID Working Group Chair; and Heather Noble, BID Working Group Vice-Chair.
The presentation included results of the business survey, and coverage of the business plan, timescales, and how it all works.
We thank everyone who came for their time and attention, it all added up to a real buzz in the room.
VENUE: Boardroom, North Shropshire College, Oswestry Campus, Shrewsbury Rd, Oswestry, SY11 4QB.
DATE & TIME: Tuesday 16th January 2018 at 5.30pm
5.30pm – 5.45pm
Arrival, drinks and networking
5.45pm – 6.30pm
6.30pm – 7pm
Drinks, networking and feedback
The Oswestry BID is an opportunity to do things differently, to get things done for the improvement of the town as a whole. You might call it a catalyst for change.
As an organiser of events in town, I see many groups and individuals working with energy and good intent to imagine and implement events across the town and for all sorts of different audiences. Whether its an event for kids in the park, or brass bands, or live music, or well-known authors, or choirs, or knitting, or supporting carers, or learning a language, or to raise funds for local charities, or a host of other marvellous things – this is an essential glue that helps to bind a community together, and lifts the spirits when the world serves up its gloom.
I see Oswestry BID playing a key role in the town, providing a clearer structure and framework to support this network of event makers. Events are good for business too. The Oswestry Food & Drink Festival has brought nearly £4 million into the town over the course of its life, that wouldn’t have been here otherwise. And that is just one single event.
So how can Oswestry BID be a catalyst for events? It can connect event organisers together, sharing ideas, resources, and tips. It can provide a more cohesive means of promotion that all events can tap into. It can give events a platform, and work with business to get involved so the benefits reach a wider audience.
Oswestry has a bright future, but something has to change. We need a catalyst for change, and that catalyst can be Oswestry BID.
If you’d like to know more about Oswestry BID, visit www.oswestry4bid.co.uk and complete the survey. We want your ideas.
The BID Development project is being supported with funds from the Oswestry town council and Shropshire County council.
John Waine, Festival Director, Oswestry Food Festival
Businesses in Oswestry are moving ahead with their plans to develop the town and surrounding area into a Business Improvement District (BID). This will enable businesses to have more influence on the promotion and development of Oswestry, to attract more people to shop, work, invest and spend time in the town.
In the next few weeks, the Oswestry BID team, led by local businesses, are surveying businesses to better understand the issues the town faces and the growth opportunities that exist. These could include ways of improving the experience of people who visit the town for retail or business, support for existing businesses as well as promoting inward investment by making Oswestry an attractive place to visit and to do business to a national audience.
The BID Working Group, is chaired by local businessman Ian Follington, and made up of experienced people from across the town centre representing businesses from retail, leisure and hospitality to IT, industry and professional services such as accountants, property agents. Ian said, “These business people are all passionate about Oswestry and want to see it prosper both in the town centre, industrial areas and in the recreational facilities such as the showground. The Oswestry BID Working Group is committed to ensuring that businesses from all sectors have an opportunity to express their views about how Oswestry could move forwards so that they can addressed in the BID business plan. This is a one-off opportunity and I urge all businesses to get involved and have their voice heard”.
Over the next few weeks, a team of surveyors and members of the Working Group will be visiting businesses asking them for a few minutes of their time to gain their views and complete simple survey.
The BID Development project is being supported with funds generously provided by Oswestry Town Council and Shropshire Council.
OSWESTRY BID Drop-by sessions today at Momentum Wines speaking with businesses from the industrial estate and town centre. Pop in to find out more about how Oswestry BID can benefit your business, and tell us what challenges and opportunities you see.
Huge thanks to Momentum Wines for hosting.
* Next Drop-by Sessions will be in the town centre on Monday, 22nd May next door to Town and Country Oswestry on Willow Street from 8.30am.
The Oswestry BID Survey is now available for each and every Oswestry business to let us know what they would like to see happen in Oswestry over the next 5 years – what is working, what could be better, what needs to change immediately, what are the obstacles to growing your business?
Download the survey and either complete electronically and email back; or post back your responses.
Click here for more info. Thank you!
Feedback on the launch