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BIDs from across the country converge in Liverpool for the third Big City BIDs Conference

Liverpool BID Company, in partnership with The BID Foundation, welcomed BIDs from across the country to converge in Liverpool for the third Big City BIDs Conference to discuss the future role of the BID industry in tourism investment and cultural strategies as well as operational support.

Taking place at the British Music Experience at the Pier Head, the event acts as a platform for BIDs to discuss important topics, share their experiences and build stronger national alliances – an objective which is at the core of Liverpool BID Company.

The conference focused on four key themes throughout the day:

  • The role of BIDs and the delivery of destination management organisations (DMOs)
  • Culture and the arts – how BIDs are breathing life into cities and maintaining a balanced strategy
  • Board governance and developing effective practices
  • The evolution of BIDs and their role on environment and safety management in city centres

Bill Addy, chief executive, Liverpool BID Company, welcomed delegates to the city, and used the opportunity to share the BID’s recent successes, including the ballot renewal for Retail & Leisure BID back in the summer.

“It was an honour to host the third Big City BIDs Conference here in Liverpool,” he said. “It was fascinating to hear from our counterparts in BIDs from across the UK, not only the positive impact they are having on our towns and city centres for businesses, visitors and residents, but also the challenges they face amid the changing landscape of the high street, and importantly, how we as a collective can address these issues. That’s what I took away from the event – how when we work together, we can improve our city centres much quicker.

“Of course, it was also a fantastic opportunity to show off Liverpool’s UNESCO World Heritage Waterfront to delegates. To say they were impressed was an understatement, and we look forward to continued collaboration with them in the future, for the benefit of our levy payers.”

Liverpool BID Company is part of a leading group of 27 BIDs across the UK that developed the recently launched, The BID Foundation, to which Bill is a founding council member. The BID Foundation is an alliance of BIDs and the Institute of Place Management at Manchester Metropolitan University which has been created to elevate standards, create a powerful voice for the industry and provide practical support to those that work in BIDs. Importantly, The BID Foundation provides a national platform for BID levy players – giving them a voice on policy, regeneration and creating an opportunity to share best practice.

Keynote speaker at the Big City BIDs Conference was Lisa Nandy MP, who in one of her various roles as co-founder of the think-tank Centre for Towns, works to explore social, economic and demographic dynamics in towns across the UK. Lisa’s extensive knowledge on the subject addressed many of the issues on the day’s agenda.

Catherine Mitton MBA, executive director, The BID Foundation, said:

“The BID Foundation was delighted to bring the Big City BIDs conference to Liverpool. It was a great day, full of BID practitioners discussing important topics that matter most to them and debate on the future role of the industry. Events are crucial to our membership as it helps to advance knowledge and innovation in the sector and builds a collegiate network for BIDs to develop their expertise and effectiveness.”

Further to Liverpool BID Company’s involvement in The BID Foundation, Bill also led the establishment of the Northern BIDs Group, to which he is chairman, working closely with BIDs in Leeds, Manchester, Newcastle, Sheffield, Sunderland and York, to provide strategic leadership and a unified voice for the BIDs across the north of England cities specifically, in their work to attract investment and drive economic growth.