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East Anglia Future 50

Campaign launched to set up Business Improvement District in Haverhill

PUBLISHED: 07:39 23 May 2018 | UPDATED: 07:45 23 May 2018

Haverhill Town Centre. The High Street.

Haverhill Town Centre. The High Street.

Archant

An imaginative campaign has been kick-started to form a group to work for businesses in the heart of Haverhill which could see £1 million created to make improvements and enhance the local economy and attract further visitors and trade into the town.

ONE Haverhill Partnership has announced the creation of a Business Improvement District (BID) in the town centre.

Working in conjunction with the Suffolk Chamber of Commerce Haverhill & District, ONE Haverhill Partnership are now kick-starting a campaign to win business support.

Two public meetings will take place next month ahead of a vote of every affected business which will determine whether a Haverhill BID will be created.

John Mayhew, chair of ONE Haverhill Partnership, said: “The idea of a Haverhill BID first came out of the Town Centre Masterplan and we think this is a perfect opportunity to make further improvements.

“Haverhill has a thriving mix of big and small national chains and independent shops and we want to offer them a greater say over how their money is spent.

“Initial estimates suggest that the BID could raise £200,000 every year for five years – so we might be looking at £1 million going directly into improving our town centre and local economy.”

Business Improvement Districts have already been created in Bury St Edmunds, Newmarket and Ipswich with increased spending on the likes of Christmas lights and big events designed to increase the footfall in and around the town.

The BID area in Haverhill would incorporate businesses located around the High Street, including Queen Street, as well as those in Ehringshausen Way and the Tesco superstore in Cangle Road.

The council would have to pay into the fund as buildings such as the Arts Centre and leisure centre attract business rates – while the BID agreement would also include a written agreement that local councils continue with their existing funding in the town.

Alaric Pugh, Cabinet Member for Planning and Growth at St Edmundsbury Borough Council and ONE Haverhill Partnership board member, said: “We have seen how successful a BID can be in Bury St Edmunds and latterly in Ipswich and Newmarket.

“If adopted, Haverhill businesses could help run different events that would attract more visitors to the town and improve the economy. Or they could fund a new parking warden, improve signage or pay for town centre Wi-Fi. It would be their choice how to prioritise the BID money.”

Businesses can learn more about the plans in two public meetings that have been organised by ONE Haverhill Partnership.

The first is at 8.30am on Tuesday, June 5, and the second is at 6pm on Tuesday, June 12, both at thr Haverhill Arts Centre.

If any business or individual has any questions ahead of the meetings email bid@onehaverhill.co.uk

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