Be Richmond is the Business Improvement District (BID) for Richmond town centre. Its purpose is to represent and support Richmond BID levy payers, and to promote Richmond town centre as a great place to live, work and explore.
What Is A BID?
A Business Improvement District (BID) is a business-led partnership specifically formed to improve and enhance a commercial district. There are over 330 BIDs in the UK, 70 of which are located in the Greater London area.
BIDs are independent, not-for-profit organisations. The income generated by a BID stays in the area to fund priorities identified by member businesses, and its services are separate and incremental to existing council provision. BID activities are governed by a board of directors from levy-paying businesses.
In addition to improving geographical areas, BIDs are increasingly becoming powerful, strategic alliances where members work together around shared, local priorities. This provides businesses with a strong voice with policy makers.
How are BIDs implemented?
Before a BID can take effect, a confidential and independently-scrutinised ballot – open to all eligible businesses – must be held. If the required majorities are achieved, the BID goes ‘live’ and becomes a legal entity.
In 2016, Richmond businesses voted overwhelmingly in favour of implementing a BID in the town centre and Be Richmond, as Richmond BID is now known, went live in 2017.
How long can a BID remain in place?
A BID operates for a five-year term, after which its members are asked to vote to decide whether it should continue for a further five years.
Be Richmond’s first five-year term ended in March 2022. Prior to that date, an independently-scrutinised ballot was held to decide whether it should continue for a further term. The results were as follows:
Yes by number of businesses: 79%
Yes by rateable value of business premises: 89%
With this strong mandate from member businesses, Be Richmond began its second five-year term on 1st April 2022.
How is the Richmond BID levy calculated and charged?
Businesses whose premises have a rateable value of £35,000 and over pay 1.5% of that rateable value as a levy on top of business rates, annually, beginning 1st April 2022. There is a cap on the BID levy, so the maximum a business will pay per annum, irrespective of the size or rateable value of its premises, is £7,750.
Be Richmond expects to generate an annual levy income of £650,000. We also have a track record of leveraging additional funding from grants and external organisations, often totalling an extra 10% on top of levies received.
All of this equates to an investment of over £3.5million into Richmond town centre over the current five-year BID term.
Which area is covered by Richmond BID?
The BID footprint starts at the Twickenham Road roundabout, extends southwards through Richmond town centre and ends at the hotels on Richmond Hill.
The following streets fall within the BID boundary:
- Brewers Lane
- Bridge Street
- Church Court
- Church Road
- Duke Street
- Eton Street
- Friars Lane
- George Street
- Golden Court
- Heron Square
- Hill Rise
- Hill Street
- Kew Road
- King Street
- Little Green
- Lower George Street
- Nightingale Lane
- Paradise Road
- Park Street
- Petersham Road
- Red Lion Street
- Richmond Hill
- Sheen Road
- Spring Terrace
- The Green
- The Quadrant
- The Square
- Twickenham Road
- Water Lane
- Whittaker Avenue