Local businesses can find out more about the planned Business Improvement District (BID) for Andover on TV station ‘That’s Hampshire’.
Nigel Terry, owner of Mail Boxes Etc on George Yard was interviewed by the Freeview TV station today (13th October 2017) as Deputy Chair of the BID Steering Group.
A BID is a defined area, like Andover town centre, where businesses may be asked to support a vote to pay a special levy on their existing business rates; funds will go to improving business prospects. If the ballot is successful participating businesses can decide and direct on what they want the funds raised to be spent.
Mr Terry says no decisions have been made yet, “The BID will give businesses the chance to have their say on if a BID goes ahead, and if voted in favour, how the monies raised will be spent.
“Funds might go towards promotional and marketing activities to drive more footfall, to work together to reduce business costs and promote Andover to the tourism market. The opportunities really are endless.”
Mr Terry’s television interview is due for broadcast over the weekend on That’s Hampshire, a new television channel from Basingstoke available on Channel 7 of Freeview enabled televisions.
The local businessman adds, “We also feel that businesses might want to consider the implementation of a ‘Shopwatch’ style radio communications system, or additional PSCOs on the streets. But again, it’s for the businesses to decide.”
Businesses can contact the BID Steering Group at their website: www.andoverbid.co.uk.
Business owners who are unsure about what the BID means are invited to ask questions and find out more. With almost 300 BID districts across the UK, Mr Terry says he is always available at his shop on George Yard to discuss what benefits a successful BID might bring to the town.
“Come and talk to us”, says Mr Terry. “A BID is led by local traders, not the Council, although Test Valley Borough Council have invested in getting expert advice on accurately putting together a sound business case.
“I am a local business owner and I think this will be great for the town and its businesses”
The Andover BID website says:
- The BID is a business-owned, led and funded company set up by a democratic ballot.
- If businesses vote ‘yes’ to a BID, it would run for a five-year term before another ballot is needed.
- It is funded by a ‘levy’ on Andover Town Centre businesses based upon the current rateable value of their property.
- The BID board would then use this money to make local improvements, in addition to the services provided by Andover Town, Test Valley or Hampshire County Councils.
It is anticipated that the ‘special levy’ could be up to 1.5% of rateable value and should raise around £200,000 a year to help promote the town centre and its businesses.