Ballot Success For Swansea BID Begins Ambitious Five-Year Plan Launched To Aid Recovery

Swansea BID (Business Improvement District) has been successful in securing a Wales record breaking 4th term ballot, and the company, which looks after the interests of 800-plus city centre businesses, will now launch its new a five-year plan to aid recovery in the city centre in August. 

The ballot was counted on 24 July and Swansea BID won a yes vote by a 77.4 percent yes vote.

Swansea BID Chief Executive, Russell Greenslade, said: “We are very pleased to be able to continue the work we do within Swansea city centre via the BID and our Big Heart of Swansea consumer-facing brand, and we are grateful for this vote of confidence from our businesses, particularly during what has been a very tough year for us all. It has been a privilege to support BID area businesses during this difficult time – and for the past 15 years – and it is important now to focus upon the bright future ahead for Swansea city centre. The very impressive ongoing regenerations is one of the most visible signs of this futures, as is the large number of ambitious business owners who have set up in Swansea in the past year. We are going to be central to this story of growth and success. Our plan for the five years ahead includes: 

  • Continuing to promote businesses through our free BID and Big Heart of Swansea social media channels, websites, marketing campaigns and events. We will revamp and invest in new technologies for our discount/loyalty Big Heart of Swansea card and brand also
  • We will scale up our work with partners to promote the city centre to visitors and create new opportunities for our members to showcase their business, including exciting seasonal experiences, and campaign activities to help attract more visitors and residents into the city centre
  • We will look to deliver further cost-saving schemes and cutting costs off the bottom line, and we will use BID’s buying power to negotiate favourable rates on an array of services and products. We will work towards reducing businesses costs even further and cutting bottoms line costs
  • Working with partners we will aim to launch a civil notice exclusion scheme denying criminals access to BID area businesses helping reduce crime, losses and improve workers and customers security. In addition, we will continue to support the Public Service Protection Order that we have worked closely with partners to instate in the BID area. We will also continue to facilitate businesses signing up to the BID areas reduced cost digital radio system and radio system training. We will support the further development and updating of the information database (DISC) and build its capability to share information to reduce crime and anti-social behaviou
  • We will provide support and management of recognised accreditation platforms for businesses to work towards, such as our Best Bar None scheme and our key partner support for national accreditation kite mark Purple Flag, which we were the first city centre in Wales to secure in February 2015 and have worked hard to maintain ever since
  • We will use our mature relationships with our city’s universities and colleges to gather informed intelligence of what the student demographic wants and needs, and work to recruit and maintain them after graduating through projects such as our Creative Bubble with The University of Wales Trinity St David’s, that has already delivered hundreds of events and supported thousands of students since its inception 
  • We will look to offer new support services to businesses, such as a dedicated Big Heart of Swansea Gift Card aimed at keeping money in the BID area and a new BID lead business information centre
  • We will represent, and champion business needs in local matters such as council service delivery and infrastructure and the areas exciting redevelopment/regeneration led by our key strategic partners, The City & County of Swansea. We will continue working with the area’s developers and investors as part of the city centre new stimulus and recovery plan

Deputy Minister for Climate Change, Lee Waters MS said: “Our town centres have faced one of the most difficult periods they will ever have to face as a result of the pandemic. Transforming towns across Wales continues to be a priority for the Welsh Government, but we all need to work together to encourage more people back to the high street. That’s why I am delighted that businesses in Swansea are continuing to support the Business Improvement District, to regenerate local areas and help our town and city centres thrive once again.”

Russell adds: “Thanks to this positive vote for Swansea BID we are continuing our work uninterrupted, and we begin by launching the Independents Month campaign – with consumers being encouraged to support some of our most characterful, resourceful and welcoming businesses across our high streets – our independents – throughout July. Let’s all do our bit to help Swansea city centre recover and thrive.”