BID For Business

A Business Improvement District (BID) is a partnership between the local business community to benefit the trading environment.

BID’s allow businesses in a defined area to improve their trading environment. The vote is open to those businesses with a rateable value of £10,000 or more. If a majority, both by number and by rateable value, approve the proposal, ratepayers will contribute through their business rates BIDs give local businesses the power to effect changes that will benefit them.

Improvements may include extra security, cleansing and environmental measures, improved promotion of the area, improved events, and greater advocacy on key issues.

BIDs are operated by not-for-profit partnership organisations. The interests of large and small businesses are protected through a system which requires a successful vote to have a simple majority in both votes cast and rateable value of votes cast.

Once voted for, the levy becomes mandatory on all defined ratepayers. BID’s manifesto has a lifespan of 5 years with each of those years having a seperate business plan.

Local Authorities play an important role and in particular are charged with legal responsibilities, including the provision of the ratings data to calculate the BID levy, the collection and enforcement of the BID levy via a ring-fenced BID Revenue Account that is then passed straight to the BID company, and the preparation and commitment to the baseline service agreements.

Preston’s BID began its first term in 2009, with a successful re-election in 2011, its second term ran from 1st April 2012 – 31st March 2017, it is now in its 3rd term, operating until 2022.

Management, Measuring & Monitoring

BID operates within a strict framework which measures, monitors and evaluates its activity. It is managed by the North & Western Lancashire Chamber of Commerce, a not for profit business which was established in 1918, and is governed by the Chamber’s board of directors.

Operationally, BID’s activity is overseen by the BID Committee, which is made up of city centre business people that represent the following sectors:

  • Local Authority
  • Policing & Crime
  • Independent Retail
  • High Street Retail
  • Commercial Sector
  • Education
  • Third-Sector / Voluntary / Charity
  • Hospitality & Leisure
  • Night Time Economy

The BID Committee meet bi-monthly to ensure projects are on track and identify areas of opportunity.

Annually BID produces a statement of accounts and an annual report, which levy-payers can download, together with BID’s key business documents, in the members area.

FREE Affiliate Membership of the
Chamber of Commerce

All BID members are entitled to take up free affiliate membership of the Chamber of Commerce.

Membership represents a significant business benefit providing discounted products/services, legal and HR support and access to valuable business to business networking events. They are also eligible to upgrade to full Chamber membership status at a reduced rate. To find out more, speak to a BID Ambassador or call the BID office.

The BID Team

Mark Whittle

BID Manager

Mark has been with Preston BID since inception in 2009. Mark’s responsible for BID’s events and general activities and manages the team. He began his employment with the Chamber of Commerce, BID’s host organisation, in 1996 and has worked in a variety of roles during that time. Mark was born in Preston and still lives here.

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Mike Pixton

BID Operations Officer

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