Three years after being set-up, the Brighouse BID is delivering for the town’s businesses - bringing in more people and investing money raised locally in the area for the benefit of shops, cafes and firms across the town centre.
The Business Improvement District’s annual report has just been published for 2021-22 and highlights both the challenges of emerging from Covid lockdowns but also the opportunities of hosting events and activities which bring people together after a time when they were forced to be apart.
The organisation has three aims which build on the town’s rich history and strong character to make Brighouse:
- A destination town - vibrant, lively and interesting for visitors and shoppers
- Family friendly - welcoming and inclusive with events, activities and engaging initiatives to encourage shoppers and visitors to the town
- Clean, safe and secure - for shoppers and business owners
In 2018, over seven in ten businesses voted yes to becoming a BID town with the organisation starting work for a five-year term in 2019. Every town centre business is a member with any outside the BID boundary able to sign up as voluntary members.
Among the successes highlighted by the annual report:
- Over 70,000 visitors to Brighouse over the 1940s Weekend and Jubilee Celebrations in June 2022.
- A family-focused Dinosaur Event which led to August 2022 having 1.5 times the footfall across the town centre of the same time the year before.
- Dwell time, the length of time spent in the town centre during a visit, increased year-on-year and is now an average of 52 minutes.
The comments made by town centre businesses show the value the BID is delivering. They include:
“We love the events in town – they are a great way to network with people who didn’t know our business was here and result in an increase in trade in the shop and online.”
“When there are events in the town centre – we don’t necessarily see an increase in shoppers on the day of the event – but we do get more awareness that we are here and this results in an increase in trade following the event."
“The events and marketing activity always keep us tremendously busy – we had to introduce a queuing system during the Dinosaur Event due to the volume of people coming into the shop."
Lesley Adams, Co-Chair of Brighouse BID, said: “As business owners, we know it is important that every pound spent delivers for Brighouse which is why we take our responsibility to use the BID levy appropriately extremely seriously.
“At times, this means we have to take difficult and controversial decisions on events and initiatives, and we’ve had to think outside the box to achieve the three objectives which our town centre shops, cafes and business community voted for when saying yes to the BID.
“We are confident we are making a difference and that the past 12 months has set the foundation for what Brighouse can achieve following the pandemic, with the return of some of our most popular events, the launch of new initiatives and plans in place to deliver even more in the months and years ahead.
“Thank you to every business, every shopper and every visitor for being part of making Brighouse a clean, safe, family friendly destination we can all be proud of.”