A Business Improvement District for the whole of Yorkshire’s coastline is set to be created after company bosses lent it their backing.
The Yorkshire Coast Business Improvement District will stretch from Staithes to Spurn Point and will now seek to raise more than £5m over five years to put back into the communities by way of creating new events, festivals, markets and infrastructure improvements.
The vote however only narrowly went in favour of the BID’s creation and the turnout for the ballot, staged as a open count and handled by Scarborough Borough Council, was only 29 per cent. Fifty five per cent of votes were cast in favour of the BID.
Clive Rowe-Evans, Chairman of the YC BID Task Group, said: “This is an absolutely fantastic result and we are so pleased, but now the hard work starts. It will only take us around 3-6 months to set up the BID as a not for profit company limited by guarantee, and then we will be ready to launch our first projects and initiatives on the Yorkshire Coast, so businesses should see the benefits of the BID very soon. The BID is a great example of what can be achieved when businesses work together towards a common goal, and it is just the start of an exciting new chapter for the Yorkshire Coast.”
Every retail, leisure, accommodation and food and drink organisation with a rateable value of £12,000 and above will pay into a mandatory levy, which would be calculated at 1.5 per cent of that value. For example, a business with a rateable value of £12,000 would pay £180 a year for five years. Mr Rowe-Evans said that the initial levy payments would start coming in around June next year.
Figures from the BID team show that businesses in Scarborough town on their own will contribute more than £2.36 million of the £5.4m raised over the five-year period.
Dozens of BIDs exist nationally, including several in Yorkshire. Bradford voted to create a BID earlier this year and successful schemes are currently operational in Leeds, Halifax and York, among other places.