Leader urges Bury’s businesses to vote yes in ballot to save BID

Mark Cordell, Terry Clements and John Griffiths ENGANL00120130227130320
Mark Cordell, Terry Clements and John Griffiths ENGANL00120130227130320

Leader of St Edmundsbury Borough Council is urging businesses to vote yes in a ballot for the Bury St Edmunds Business Improvement District (BID).

Town centre shops, offices and other businesses began voting today (Wednesday) on whether to pay 1.75 per cent of their rateable value in order to keep the Ourburystedmunds BID group.

In the past four years the BID, under the direction of chief executive Mark Cordell, has delivered major events including the Whitsun Fayre, the Food and Drink Festival, and the Christmas Lights Switch On, all of which bring thousands of extra shoppers to the town.

If businesses vote no in the ballot, the future of these attrations will be at risk.

Cllr John Griffiths, leader of St Edmundsbury, said: “We may not always agree 100 per cent with Ourburystedmunds on every single issue, but we much value what they have already helped to do for the town, and our excellent working relationship with them.

“What is beyond doubt is that they add serious value to the town’s, and indeed West Suffolk’s, prosperity and economy.

“Bury St Edmunds is a lovely and unique town as well now as a great business success story.”

The BID has just set out its five-year vision for the town, which includes the introduction of tourism ambassadors.

Cllr Alaric Pugh, St Edmundsbury cabinet minister for economic growth, said: “It is ideas like these that add value to the work already being carried out by the council.

“The BID makes Bury special and we cannot afford to lose it.”

Businesses with a rateable value of £10,000 or more have until December 3 to vote in the ballot.