Cabinet endorse Tunbridge Wells bid for BID

Pam Mills
Cllr Tracy Moore

A BUSINESS leader’s call to ‘stop boring retail’ and provide shoppers with more experiences, has been backed by council leaders.

Royal Tunbridge Wells Together [RTWT] group wants firms to get behind a Business Improvement District [BID] proposal.

This would see companies paying certain business rates within a set town centre area pay a levy towards creating events and services.

Royal Victoria Place manager and RTWT member Nicky Blanchard outlined the vision of a changing town in a meeting earlier this month, as reported in the Times last week, where BID plans were viewed by firms.

Cllr Tracy Moore attended the meeting and last week urged colleagues on the Conservative-driven Cabinet of Tunbridge Wells Borough Council to support RTWT’s work.

The authority is not governing the BID, but owns 16 properties in the marked area. Some of these are: Royal Victoria Place Car Park [and other nearby car parks], the Museum and Library as well as Town Hall itself.

This means they will have 16 ballot votes when businesses are asked whether or not they want to adopt the proposals for a five year term.

RTWT need 50 per cent of 640 firms to vote yes in the ballot [which runs from October 11 to November 8] for the plan to go into action from April 1 next year.

Cllr Moore, portfolio holder for economic development, said: “Royal Tunbridge Wells Together should be supported because this is the right time to launch a BID in Tunbridge Wells.”

Colleagues Cllr David Jukes, council leader, and Cllr Jane March, portfolio holder folder for culture, leisure and tourism, also expressed support and the motion passed unopposed at the Cabinet.

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