Purley’s People Power

Purley Businesses have overwhelmingly voted in favour of establishing a Business improvement District (BID) in the town. This is after an 18 month campaign set up by the Purley Business Association to create a BID to help improve Purley.

The Purley BID scheme has successfully been voted in, the requirement was to meet 2 criteria to get greater than 50% of the voters in favour and 50% of the rateable value to agree to setting up a BID. This target was significantly exceeded with an 87.5% in favour and 94.9% of the rateable value. Their aim is to improve Purley for businesses and those who are visiting, making Purley more attractive and a better place to do business.

A BID is formed to improve the business interest of a specific area by investing in services, projects and events, it is both business-led and businesses funded. The Purley BID will be funded by a levy equivalent to 2% of the current business rates and looks to create a huge income for Investment of £130,000 per year. The Purley Business Association decided over a year ago to try to establish ‘Purley BID’ on the basis to improve Purley. Members of the Purley BID have included Lupita Coffee House owner Marlon Johnson (BID Chairman) and Smart Cow Marketing’s Simon Cripps (BID CEO).

The Purley BID have focused on specific areas in which they want to improve being “visons” of Parking & Accessibility, Image & Marketing, Cleaner & Greener, Safer Streets and Business Engagement. Now, with the Purley BID given the YES vote, the £130,000 generated from the businesses levy, will be distributed effectively to each of the Visions.

The delivery is for services above and beyond those provided by Croydon Council and much negotiating has taken place to establish the baseline agreement for services to Purley.

Simon Brew, Conservative councillor for Purley Ward gave his insight into the recent news: "We are absolutely delighted to hear the good news that the businesses of Purley have decided to vote for this scheme. It will deliver improvements, innovative services and events to the heart of this important district centre” GLA Member Steve O’Connell added that he was looking forward to see the BIDs plans that ” Purley becomes more of a destination, attracting greater footfall and so more trade for existing businesses, as well as attracting some new businesses.”

As well as the overwhelming support from the business community Tony Newman, Leader of Croydon Council stated “It is very encouraging to see the third BID established in Croydon, the council are really keen to see these initiatives succeed and will work together with Purley BID to make this a success and to ensure Croydon is a great place to do business”. Cabinet member for Economy and Jobs Toni Letts added “We look forward to working with Purley BID to ensure that the town is a real choice for businesses serving the local community, encouraging improved community cohesion, higher football and a great place where people want to live, shop and work. “

The BID now has a 5 year mandated to deliver improvements to Purley, Marlon Johnson, owner of Lupita Coffee House on the High Street and Chairman of the Purley BID said “This is exactly what Purley needs, this town is constantly changing and the next 5 years will also see many changes within Purley and Croydon that will significantly alter the economy of the town. We need this BID to ensure that Purley is on the front step of dealing with current and new challenges”.

Now the ballot has overwhelmingly voted in favour, the BID plans to take effect from 1st February 2016, BID Manager Simon Cripps has been outlining the way ahead. “between now and the start in February, we need to finalise the membership of the BID board. Essentially we are looking for representation for all business types and locations in Purley to ensure a fair distribution of funds and welcome local businesses to step forward. Once established we have many initiative planned, however need to take stock to see what can be delivered in the most cost effective and beneficial method for the businesses of Purley.”

Breaking away from parliamentary work in London Croydon South MP Chris Philp, returned to Purley for the announcement of the Ballot. Chris stated that “as a big supporter of Purley BID I am extremely pleased to see the ballot return with such a significant mandate. It has been a lot of hard work to get to this, point putting forward the case to both the small business such as the hairdressers all the way to Tesco. I am very pleased that Purley has embraced this initiative and look forward to seeing the benefits unfold.”

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If you would like more information about this topic, please contact Simon Cripps at 020 3137 1826 or email at simon@purleyBID.co.uk

11/23/2015Accessibility & Parking, Business Engagement, Cleaner & Greener, Perception & Image, Safer streets