Paddington BID (Business Improvement District)
George Grace was BID Director during the creation of the Paddington BID - one of the first BIDs to be established in the UK, it has operated since April 2005 working to make the area more attractive, safer, greener, better marketed and represented. The BID was renewed following a ballot of businesses in October 2008 and began its second term in April 2009.
The BID is funded through a small levy on 350 local businesses with a rateable value of more than £15,000 (based on the current Ratings List). This raises over £500,000 each year which, with additional voluntary contributions from companies and landowners who support the BID's objectives, has raised over £2 million so far to spend in Paddington. The BID was renewed following a ballot of businesses in October 2008 and began its second term in April 2009.
Paddington BID delivers projects which bring more customers to the area and encourage tourists to stay and spend their money locally. It works to re-position Paddington as a leisure destination and eating-out quarter, surrounded by a strong commercial and residential environment. Whilst the BID is creating a step change in people's perceptions of Paddington it is also about building a strong business voice for the area.
The Paddington BID has delivered a range of projects and services for the area over the past five years, working to key themes:
- Safer - The BID funds a four-strong dedicated police Community Safety Team, with officers from the Metropolitan Police Service. This is backed up by a monitored CCTV system and radio communication scheme, creating a safer environment for businesses, visitors, customers, residents and staff.
- Recycling - The BID introduced its free commercial recycling scheme in January 2007 and now provides recycling collections 3 times a week for over 150 businesses. The BID collects paper, card, cardboard, tins and plastics from the kerb, and batteries, furniture, confidential waste and waste electronic and electrical equipment all for free. Paddington was the first BID in the UK to introduce this service to its businesses, is offered at no additional cost and is recognised as a leader in the field of commercial waste reduction. More than 50,000 kg of recycling is collected from businesses each month through the BID. The services and projects run by the BID are in addition to services currently provided by Westminster City Council and the Metropolitan Police.
- Attractive - The BID has funded and worked in partnership to deliver a range of environmental and streetscape projects to improve the visual appearance of Paddington. Since 2005 the BID has funded more than 73 hanging baskets and planters, christmas lights, regeneration of Talbot Square Gardens with the Council, new on-street waste and recycling bins, new paving schemes. The BID has also produced its own Planning and Design Guide for businesses in Paddington.
The BID is delivered on a day to day basis by Paddington Waterside Partnership, who employ the BID team and chaired by members of the business community.