Love Wimbledon Board Welcome New CEO

We are delighted to announce that Craig Hurring has been appointed as the new CEO of the Love Wimbledon BID. Craig brings with him a wealth of experience. He previously worked for South Bank Employers’ Group, an organisation which has led the transformation of London’s South Bank and who are also the delivery agent for South Bank BID. He has built up a highly regarded career in both not-for-profit and for-profit businesses offering extensive people and stakeholder management experience. We are sure Wimbledon businesses and stakeholders will give Craig a big Wimbledon welcome as you meet him over the coming weeks.

Craig started the post on 4th January with a handover from Love Wimbledon’s previous CEO, Helen Clark Bell.

Craig Hurring, CEO, Love Wimbledon BID commented:

“I’m thrilled to have been appointed as the new Chief Executive for Love Wimbledon BID. Helen and the team have delivered an outstanding renewal ballot result, and we now have a five-year window of opportunity to work together to ensure Wimbledon recovers from the pandemic as a thriving, safe, clean and sustainable destination for businesses, visitors and residents. I’m looking forward to applying everything I have learned working with South Bank BID and really getting to know the BID area and its businesses as soon as I can.”

Helen Clark Bell, former CEO added:

“I am very proud of the reputation that Love Wimbledon BID has built since its inception nearly 10 years ago, confirmed by the recent strong mandate from the business community in the recent renewal ballot. It has been an incredible and enjoyable journey with a great staff team and supportive Board of Directors and I am delighted to now be handing over the reins to Craig to lead the BID forward.”

We wish Helen all the best and thank her for all her energy and professionalism over the last ten years, she has promised to stay in touch.

The board and I wish everybody a happy and prosperous 2022 and thank you again for supporting the Love Wimbledon BID.

Paul Harvey, Chair of Love Wimbledon BID and Managing Partner, Morr & Co.

If you need to get in contact with Craig, his email is or call the Love Wimbledon team on 020 8619 2012.

Wimbledon in 2021: A Year in Review

In what was a challenging year, Wimbledon Town Centre showed an impressive level of resilience in 2021, with the community and businesses coming together to do their part to support the town’s recovery, offering hope for what lies ahead in 2022. We look back to the last year, reflecting on positive moments for the town and Wimbledon businesses.

Businesses saw the opportunity to innovate

As the outside became the new inside, businesses continued to adapt, with restaurants refurbishing their outdoor spaces, café’s integrating wellbeing into their service and gyms offering virtual classes. The Polka reopened after an £8.5m refurbishment creating a destination theatre, café and play area – a very welcome addition to the town. New Wimbledon Theatre also returned, after its longest closure in history (including World War 2), with a refreshing take on Aladdin.

Polka Theatre redevelopment 

Town Centre transformation begun 

Many new businesses opened in the town in 2021, including a Zero-waste store and Queens Rd Market in Centre Court Shopping Centre.    Investment in the town centre continued as a  range of new developments began, including Centre Court Shopping Centre, where the new owners and managers Romulus have committed to transforming the inward-looking, 1990s retail environment into a lively, open space to meet friends or colleagues, shop, relax, eat and drink, work or work out. We have created a new page on our website of some of the more significant planning applications to keep businesses appraised. The redevelopment of YMCA is currently well under way, creating a modern, community facility and homes in the Wimbledon.

CGI of transformation plans for Centre Court Shopping Centre

Placemaking continued

Hartfield Walk was unveiled – a reimagined space to sit, enjoy delicious street food and an eco-message. Recognising the need for more seating in the town centre, this project came to fruition at a time where more residents were exploring their local area. The space features an amalgamation of planting, seating, market kiosks, lighting, environmental games and art, all carefully designed to inspire local people of all ages to go greener, through references to combatting air pollution and climate change. 

Wimbledon’s rainbow crossing got a re-vamp too, to feature a more inclusive design. More planting has been introduced to enhance the look and feel of the town, including planters on the Piazza, bedding outside the entrance of Centre Court and a new vertical planting system integrated onto a lampost.

King Falafel food kiosk in Hartfield Walk

Events returned in a different way

All of our usual events were adapted to ensure that they could be delivered safely, and still provide energy, fun and entertainment for all – Big Screen Tennis, Summer Sit Out, Wimbledon Winter Weekender,  Markets (Autumn Arts, Monthly and Christmas), plus outdoor interactive trails such as our Easter Egg pavement hunt, Halloween Hocus Pocus Trail and Spot The Golden Reindeer trail. Local residents, passers-by and businesses all got involved and it could be said that the festive spirit truly returned.

 Wimbledon Winter Weekender

There was certainly no lack of things to do in Wimbledon, with international film and musical festivals, a pop-up cinema, comedy clubs and live music nights, being just some of the activities that were hosted in the town centre.

Business events also returned, as we held our first joint face-to-face lunchtime networking event for local employees with Merton Chamber and sponsored the Merton Best Business Awards (MBBAs), highlighting business resilience over the last 18 months.

Love Wimbledon presents an award at the MBBAs

We’re confident that 2022 will be a year of further evolution for Wimbledon Town Centre and that there are real grounds for optimism. As office workers start to return and businesses are open we will continue to build on promoting your businesses, improving the town centre and developing sustainable solutions for the future. We wish businesses all the best.

The Love Wimbledon Team