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Bid to make our coast the

UK’s top tourist destination

    By Andrea Kirk  
       
   

THE Yorkshire Coast Business Improvement District (BID) will go ahead after businesses between Staithes and Spurn Point voted in favour of its creation.

The business-led and funded initiative has been created to give an opportunity to the business sector to shape improvements to their areas to increase footfall.

The BID will be funded by a 1.5 per cent levy collected from business ratepayers with a rateable value of over £12,000.

This is predominantly businesses such as public houses, shops, restaurants and the accommodation and leisure industry which includes golf courses, caravan parks, leisure centres and amusement arcades.

East Riding business owners with a rateable value of over £12,000 were invited to vote on the BID in a postal ballot that was held between November 1 and November 29.

Votes were counted on Friday, November 30, at Scarborough Town Hall with 55 per cent voting in favour. For the BID to be implemented more than 50 per cent of businesses needed to vote in favour. The turnout for the vote was only 29.17 per cent of the 1,354 papers sent to eligible businesses and organisations. 395 papers were returned of which three of the papers were void, 217 voted yes and 175 voted to not support the BID.

Councillor Brian Cloke from Withernsea Town Council said: “I’m very pleased the BID has been successful, although by quite a marginal amount at 55 per cent. I think it’s a good way to get businesses to club together to make improvements to benefit the town and area.”

Torkel Larsen from Withernsea ‘s Pier and Promenade Association added: “I’m delighted it’s going ahead. I spoke to Emily Stevenson from Yorkshire BID the first time they came to Withernsea and I’ve been following it through. Anything that helps to promote the Yorkshire coast more is fantastic. It will also hopefully help businesses along the coast.”

It’s expected the levy will raise more than £5m over five years to be spent on projects within the community agreed within the business plan.

Yorkshire BID spokesperson and Hornsea Chamber of Trade’s Simon Tudor said: “The successful ballot result for the Yorkshire coast bid now gives businesses the chance to make a real impact and have control of a lot of money to promote the fantastic Yorkshire coast. The way the BID business plan is set up we will also control a percentage of revenue raised which can be spent on a local level, giving us the opportunity to organise events and draw a wish list of improvements or added attractions to the area, this will aim to encourage visitors and benefit residents.”

East Riding of Yorkshire Council’s Andy Burton, the cabinet portfolio holder for economic investment and planning, said: “The council is committed to supporting the work of the Yorkshire Coast Business Improvement District (BID) team, following Friday’s announcement. Local businesses and organisations have voted ‘Yes’ to the BID proposals that, over the next five years, will include a £1.5million marketing, promotion and events fund, £200,000 for business support and £200,000 for improving the appearance of the Yorkshire coast.

“There will also be money for smaller projects specifically within the coastal towns, such as Bridlington, Withernsea and Hornsea as well as neighbouring coastal villages. The BID’s ambition is to make the Yorkshire coast the UK’s number one tourist destination. It will work alongside the business community to develop, grow and promote a highquality and diverse offer of retail, food and drink, leisure and attractions while also protecting and promoting its great natural environment. The council is looking forward to supporting and being part of this exciting opportunity.”

 
         
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