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Bristol companies vote against renewal of business improvement district

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Written by: Hannah Baker | Posted 20 March 2019 14:44

Bristol companies vote against renewal of business improvement district

Businesses on Gloucester Road have voted against renewing the area’s business improvement district (BID).

The proposed new BID, known as GRBID, failed by four votes.

Out of 251 eligible businesses in the area, which includes parts of Cheltenham Road, Zetland Road, Overton and Denmark Place, 125 votes were cast.

There were only 59 supporting votes in favour of the BID.

Anne-Louise Perez, GRBID manager, said: “We know there will be many disappointed traders and community stakeholders who recognised the improvements and benefits to the area made possible by the GRBID.

“The levy fund was always used to elevate the profile of the area both locally and nationally.

“It was notable GRBID area in recent years had one of the lowest vacancy rates in Bristol.”

Read more: Bristol's Corrigan Accountancy celebrates 10 years in business

A BID is a partnership between a local authority and local businesses, which pay a levy to improve a particular area of a city.

Anne-Louise said there were “mixed views” from businesses throughout the engagement process for the new BID.

There were concerns, she says, stemming from when the GRBID was first set up in 2014.

But she says “many local businesses” agreed there had been “significant” improvements to the area between 2016 to 2019 when a new board of directors had formed and new management was hired.

“I would like to thank the board of directors of the GRBID who were all traders. They dedicated a great deal of their own time voluntarily to raise the awareness of Bristol’s Independent District.”

GRBID Ltd will now terminate the GRBID arrangements (committed projects from the original business plan will be completed) and the board of directors will initiate the process of winding up the company.

Anne-Louise added: “The levy was accounted for in the budget and so there will be no refunds expected.”

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