Wondering what Eastleigh BID actually is?
Eastleigh BID – Who are we?
Here at Eastleigh BID, we work hard to ensure we provide a brilliant service to the businesses in the town centre and promote the town to the public via our website and social media.
On a recent survey it has been revealed that we are confused to be the Council. We are an independent non for profit organisation, funded by the businesses in Eastleigh town centre who are here and work for you! However we do work in partnership with Eastleigh Borough Council on various different projects within the town centre, for example the upcoming town centre WIFI.
What is a BID?
A BID is a business-led and business funded body formed to improve a defined commercial area. The benefits of BIDs are wide-ranging and include:
- Businesses decide and direct what they want for the area
- Businesses are represented and have a voice in issues affecting the area
- BID levy money is ring-fenced for use only in the BID area
- Increased footfall
- Improved staff retention
- Reduced business costs
- Enhanced marketing and promotion
- Facilitated networking opportunities with neighbouring businesses
- Assistance in dealing with the Council, Police and other public bodies
Key BID Facts:
- In the UK, the majority of BIDs exist in town centres, however they are also in industrial, commercial and mixed-use locations.
- The BID mechanism allows for a large degree of flexibility and as a result BIDs can vary in size.
- The average size of a BID is 300-400 hereditaments, with some of the smallest having fewer than 50 hereditaments and the largest at over 1,000.
- Annual income is typically £200,000-£600,000 but can be as little as £50,000 per annum and as much as £2 million+.
- Legislation enabling the formation of BIDs was passed in 2003 in England and Wales (with subsequent regulations published in 2004 and 2005 respectively) and in 2006 in Scotland.
- The first BID in England commenced in January 2005.
- The first Scottish and Welsh BIDs commenced in April 2008.
- BIDs were first established in Canada and the US in the 1960s and now exist across the globe, including in South Africa, Germany, Japan, New Zealand and Australia.
How are we funded?
Eastleigh BID is funded by the businesses, to improve the town centre, in order to create a cleaner, safer and more attractive place to visit. The easiest way to think about how we are funded is this; think of a big melting pot, all the town centre businesses with an annual turnover over a certain amount, pays into the ‘Eastleigh BID’ pot. This money is collected annually, with the help of Eastleigh Borough Council due to administration duties.
BID Levy and Funding:
A BID is funded through the BID levy, which is a small percentage of a businesses’ rateable value. The majority of BIDs charge 1% of rateable value, however there are some that have opted for higher levies, particularly in smaller locations with lower rateable values and industrial areas.
Once a ballot is successful the BID levy is mandatory for all eligible businesses. BIDs can choose to exempt certain businesses from paying the levy (and therefore from voting in the BID ballot). Many BIDs exempt the smallest businesses; and some exempt certain business sectors.
BIDs are often successful at attracting funding in addition to the BID levy. They are particularly attractive to public sector grant making bodies due to the private sector match-funding available through the BID levy. Local authorities, property owners, and businesses outside the BID area can all provide additional income for BIDs through voluntary agreements.
Where does that money go?
The money is fed back into the town through the likes of our 3 town rangers, the events we put on such as the Medieval Festival, Urban Beach and The Christmas Lights Switch (in partnership with Eastleigh Borough Council). To add to this we sponsor/fund the Chilli Festival and Eastleigh Mela Festival and generally promote the town and businesses through our social media and website.