'We have some real opportunities to work together'

Paul Batts Outdoors & Active

Paul Batts. - Credit: Paul Blakemore

I’m delighted to have the opportunity, as Chair of the Weston Business Improvement District (BID) to have a new monthly column and to be able to share news, updates and information about some of the great things going on in our town centre.

For those who haven’t heard of a BID, they originated in Canada and have spread across the world as a way for businesses to work together by a simple principle of every business in a defined BID area contributing a levy towards building a fund that collectively has the power to make a difference.

Weston BID is just one of 328 BIDs that operate in the UK and we have successfully been operating in the town centre and seafront area for 10 years, delivering projects and services to support our business community in our great seaside town.

We have recently launched a new Weston BID ‘Super Support’ grant scheme with a total of £10,000 available to support businesses in the BID area to reopen and recover from the pandemic and I would urge traders to find out more and apply using a simple form on our website.

Our dedicated Security and Street Wardens are a vital part of keeping our town safe, secure and clean and can be seen patrolling seven days a week, 365 days a year. Whether it’s with our Radio Link services in conjunction with the police, reuniting lost children through our Child Safe Service or simply caring for all of our wonderful floral displays amongst other things.

Whilst at a more strategic level, we are a key player alongside North Somerset Council and, the town council in bringing together the ‘SuperWeston’ project – an ambitious placemaking strategy that continues to highlight all that Weston has to offer in terms of being a great place to work, live and visit.

The past 18 months have been a real challenge for our traders as a result of the pandemic, but now we have some real opportunities to work together more than ever to help support and promote each other.

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In next months’ column you will hear from our Town Centre and BID Manager, Steve Townsend with more on our BID renewal plan to continue our work for another five years. In the meantime, I wish everyone a safe, prosperous and enjoyable summer here in Weston.

Paul Batts