What is a BID?
A Business Improvement District is a geographically defined area, in this case Wimbledon Town Centre. It is a business-led and business funded body formed to improve a defined commercial area.
Who is Love Wimbledon?
Love Wimbledon is run by an executive team, managed by Helen Clark Bell, BID CEO. We have a Board of non-executive directors made up of representatives from the local business community, representing different business sizes, sectors and locations.
How can I find out if my business is in the BID area?
A full list of addresses is available under our new Proposed BID Area.
How do I know what it will cost me?
A BID is funded through a mandatory levy, which is calculated as 1% of a business’ rateable value. A business with a rateable value of £20,000 would pay £200 per annum. Once a ballot is successful the BID levy is mandatory and payable annually for all eligible businesses for the 5 year term. BIDs can choose to not include certain businesses from paying the levy (and therefore from voting in the BID ballot). Love Wimbledon chooses to not include the smallest businesses – those with a rateable value under £20,000, and offers a reduction to charities and businesses in Centre Court Shopping Centre and businesses behind the ticket barriers at the station.
What is the levy used for?
Love Wimbledon is a not for profit organisation and all expenditure is focussed on activities and initiatives for Wimbledon Town Centre. Outline budgets are in our BID Proposal 2022-27 and our audited accounts are published in our Annual Report.
When do I get to vote and how does that work?
Every business receives one vote for each business premises they occupy. Each business is asked to identify the nominated voter for their business and this is being confirmed through a mailout from Merton Council. On September 20th ballot papers will be sent out by Merton Council to each voter. These must be returned to Merton Council by 5pm on Thursday 21st October.
What choices do I get on the ballot paper? Who is standing for election?
There are just 2 choices – vote ‘Yes’ to continue to support Love Wimbledon BID for another 5 year term or ‘N’o to cease the services and support from Love Wimbledon. There are no third parties to vote for, it is a simple ‘Yes/No’ vote.
What does the BID need to be successful in the ballot?
There are two measures that the ballot needs to meet: a simple majority of those that vote, voting Yes, and a simple majority of the rateable value of the eligible businesses in the BID area voting yes.
What happens if the ballot is unsuccessful?
Love Wimbledon BID and all its services and activities will cease to exist from 31st March 2022.
How can I influence what Love Wimbledon BID do?
Each year we ask the businesses through an annual survey what their key priorities are. Helen Clark Bell, our CEO, regularly meets with businesses throughout the year and welcomes the opportunity to meet with you, to discuss what you want as a business from the BID. Please contact her on 020 8619 2012 or firstname.lastname@example.org
How do you ensure Love Wimbledon isn’t just doing what the Council should be doing?
BIDs enter into a baseline agreement with the local authority and other service providers which guarantees the local authority level of service provision in the area. These ensure that any services the BID provides are truly additional. This document enables Love Wimbledon to hold the Council to account for what they should be delivering in the town centre in terms of cleansing, etc. An Operating Agreement is also entered into, between a BID and their local authority, governing how the BID levy monies are collected, administered and passed over to the BID.
How can I see what Love Wimbledon has achieved?
Each year we publish a comprehensive Annual Report detailing our activity of the last year and our audited financial report. Every business in the BID receives a hard copy and the latest report is available on our website. Our website is kept up to date with news stories and we produce a monthly newsletter that is distributed to every business by email and hard copy. We report directly to our Board of Directors on progress against our Business Plan and Key Performance Indicators.
Where can I see the plans for the next 5 years?
View our BID Proposal 2022-27 digitally here. Hard copies will also be distributed to all businesses and an electronic version via email. This has been developed after extensive consultation with the businesses of Wimbledon, ‘users’ of the town centre and local stakeholder groups.
Is it just another tax?
No. The BID levy is applied to activities and initiatives in Wimbledon town centre as described in our BID Proposal 2022-27. The funds do not go to Central Government or Merton Council. Budget management and income and expenditure is overseen by the Board of Directors and audited every year.
What happens next?
From 20th September – 21st October 2021, eligible businesses will be asked to cast their vote in a formal ballot. To ensure neutrality, the ballot will be administered by Merton Council’s Electoral Services Department and it will be a secret ballot.
- Monday 6th September 2021:
Your notice of ballot will be sent out via post.
- Monday 20th September 2021:
Your ballot paper will arrive at your business via post.
- Tuesday 21st September 2021 – Thursday 21st October 2021:
Your ballot papers needs to be returned to Merton Council by 5pm on Thursday 21st October.
- Friday 22nd October 2021:
The ballot result will be announced. Love Wimbledon BID will continue to deliver on the success of its projects from the last five years if two tests are met:
– A simple majority of those voting in the ballot must vote in favour.
– Those voting in favour must represent a majority of rateable value of the hereditaments.