Business Improvement District proposals for Morley town centre

Rachael Kennedy  - Morley Town Centre manager.
Rachael Kennedy - Morley Town Centre manager.

Progress on a scheme to create a Business Improvement District for Morley will be outlined at a forum meeting on Monday.

A steering group made up of key businesses, working alongside the Morley Town Centre Manager, is proposing a Business Improvement District (BID) to make significant changes and support retail and commerce within the area.

The proposed area for the BID scheme incorporates Queen Street, Peel Street, Ackroyd Street, Fountain Street, High Street, Commercial Street, Corporation Street, Morley Bottoms, Chartists Way, Melbourne Street, Hope Street, Albion Street, South Queen Street and Queensway.

Members of the steering group are encouraging all businesses to attend an open forum on Monday evening at Morley Town Hall, 6pm to 7pm, to hear more about the positive impact a BID would have on their business and to also share their ideas and thoughts on what they believe is needed within the town centre to help with business growth.

Some of the proposals put forward so far include a marketing plan to promote all businesses within the area including a designated website or Morley app; a dashboard allowing all BID businesses to communicate, network and trade within and increase the local economy; increased footfall across the town centre through a calendar of events and street animations; improved Christmas lights; work towards the Purple Flag scheme to promote bars, cafes and pubs and increase the night time economy.

Following the consultation phase, currently taking place across the 450 businesses within the proposed BID for Morley, all businesses will be invited to vote at a postal ballot leading up to July 18.

Those ballot papers will be received by all businesses shortly.

Rachael Kennedy, Morley Town Centre Manager, said: “These are the most ambitious town centre plans we have seen in a long time. A BID for Morley would be a timely and significant leap forward to help support our thriving business community. It’s exciting to see the growing support from different businesses as we take our plans forward towards a ballot this July.”

Business Improvement Districts began in the US and Canada and there are now over 300 BIDS within the UK. Following a successful ballot, a BID is set up as a limited company, run by a board of business representatives with the autonomy to deliver what is set out in a clear and precise business plan.