Our Town Our Future BID Business Plan 2021-2026 - 5 years on

 
Our Town Our Future BID Business Plan 2021-2026 - 5 years on
Our Town
Our Future                     5 years on
                              – our achievements
                                and our need for
Together we are stronger      business support to
                              maintain investment
                                  in the town
BID Business Plan 2021-2026
WatfordBID.co.uk
Our Town Our Future BID Business Plan 2021-2026 - 5 years on
“ Watford town centre is
                                                                                                      Contents
                the heart of our town, providing
             an outstanding destination for retail,
           leisure, business and a place where our                                                    Our vision for Watford town centre & the BID team    4
         community can come together to enjoy all                                                     Chair’s introduction                                 5
       that it has to offer. Town centres do not thrive
    without vision, drive and commitment. Watford BID                                                 The BID board                                        6
    has played a vital role in providing our town centre                                              What is a BID and how does it work?                  8
    businesses with a strong voice to make sure their
    interests are heard and now, more than ever, this                                                 COVID-19: The impact on Watford                     10
         is critical to the town’s long-term success.                                                 2016-2021: What has Watford BID achieved?           12
       We are determined that Watford remains the
      region’s premier town centre and look forward                                                   The BID in numbers                                  18
              to working with the BID and all our
                                                                                                      What our town will lose if you vote ‘NO’            19
              businesses to make this happen.”
                                                                                                      Moving forward: planning the next five years        20
                       Peter Taylor
                                                                                                      of Watford BID
                 Elected Mayor of Watford
                                                                      “ Tackling crime                How the BID has kept in touch &                     21
                                                                    and anti-social behaviour         shaped its future plans
                                                                  is certainly not a job we can
                                                               do alone and I am grateful for the     2021-2026: Planning for the future                  22
                                                               continued support of our partners      How will the BID measure success?                   26
                                                              across Watford. We have enjoyed a
                                                           strong working relationship with Watford   The BID budget                                      27
                                                            BID for some time, and they have been
                                                                                                      The BID rules                                       28
                                                               instrumental in backing our youth
                                                               crime project which aims to divert     The BID area                                        30
                                                                vulnerable teenagers away from
                                                                     gang and knife crime.”
                                                                   Watford Chief Inspector
                                                                         Ian Grout

2                                                                                                                                                              3
Our Town Our Future BID Business Plan 2021-2026 - 5 years on
Our vision for                                                                                                                              Chair’s introduction
Watford town centre                                                                                           The most successful
                                                                                                                                            It is vital we continue to invest in the future
                                                                                                                                            of Watford.
                                                                                                                                                                                                             We know and understand that for
                                                                                                                                                                                                             many of you COVID-19 has devastated
                                                                                                            places will be those with                                                                        business and recovery will be a long
                                                                                                           a commercial culture that                                                                         and hard process; we have therefore
A town centre where everyone feels safe, confident and                                                    supports entrepreneurship,
                                                                                                                                            It is incredible to think five years have passed since Watford
                                                                                                                                                                                                             shaped and developed this Business
                                                                                                                                            BID was established. The time has flown, and so much has
comfortable, and where businesses thrive and prosper.                                                      investment and innovation                                                                         Plan with this in mind. The first two
                                                                                                                                            happened. As we look back on what has been achieved in
                                                                                                                                                                                                             years will focus on recovery, while
It will be competitive and dynamic, a place that is attractive                                                     to flourish.             Watford, we need to ensure that we do not let the pandemic
                                                                                                                                                                                                             years three, four and five will focus
                                                                                                                                            overshadow our success. We need to take a balanced view of
to businesses and investors.                                                                                                                                                                                 on the growth and development
                                                                                                            PWC – Good Growth for           what we are facing now and go forward with optimism.
                                                                                                                                                                                                             of Watford. As such, we have not
                                                                                                                 Cities 2019                                                                                 increased the BID levy for the first
                                                                                                                                            Since early March 2020, the country has had to deal with
                                                                                                                                                                                                             two years of a new BID term. We
                                                                                                                                            the impact of COVID-19; a national lockdown, recovery, local
                                                                                                                                                                                                             are also better supporting our
                                                                                                                                            spikes, a second national lockdown and a high degree of
                                                                                                                                                                                                             local charities through a greatly
                                                                                                                                            economic uncertainty. This has impacted on all aspects of
                                                                                                                                                                                                             reduced levy rate.
                                                                                                                                            business across the country, but especially on town centres.
                                                                                                                                            We have seen that the towns which are dealing with the
                                                                                                                                                                                                             The pandemic has changed

The Watford BID team
                                                                                                                                            challenges most effectively are those where community
                                                                                                                                                                                                             how our town will operate and
                                                                                                                                            leaders and businesses work together. We are stronger
                                                                                                                                                                                                             we need to be smart enough to
                                                                                                                                            together, and in Watford we can proudly say, this is a town
                                                                                                                                                                                                             recognise this and flexible enough
                                                                                                                                            where people work together.
                                                                                                                                                                                                             to adapt to the challenges and
Watford BID employs a small team of staff to deliver the business plan. We are based in an office on the High Street and are                                                                                 opportunities as they arise. I
                                                                                                                                            Town centres are historically the social and economic
committed to improving Watford town centre.                                                                                                                                                                  believe the BID is part of the new
                                                                                                                                            hearts of our communities. How they are used and how they
                                                                                                                                                                                                             emerging Watford and will play
                                                                                                                                            operate has changed over the years – and will continue to
                                                                                                                                                                                                             a fundamental role in shaping its
                                                                                                                                            change. We need to ensure that Watford continues to offer
                    Maria Manion                                                        Jill Farnsworth                                                                                                      future development. However, we
                                                                                                                                            its residents, businesses and employees the services and
                    Chief Executive                                                     Head of Operations and Development                                                                                   can only achieve this with your
                                                                                                                                            opportunities they need and want.
                    Maria is responsible for ensuring                                   Jill is responsible for the delivery of our large                                                                    continued support, so I would urge
                    the BID company delivers against its                                BID projects, communicating with levy payers                                                                         all businesses to vote ‘YES’
                                                                                                                                            Over the past five years we have seen over £200m invested
                    five-year business plan and the town’s                              and handling the contracts with outside                                                                              in the forthcoming ballot.
                                                                                                                                            in our town centre via intu, Watford Borough Council and the
                    interests are well represented.                                     organisations.                                                                                                       Without the BID the
                                                                                                                                            BID, plus other public and private sector partners. Watford’s
                                                                                                                                                                                                             town would be a very
                                                                                                                                            townscape is the envy of many other towns: it has no graffiti,
                                                                                                                                                                                                             different place.
                    Glen Hempenstall                                                    John Hattingh                                       the streets are well maintained, the crime rate is very low
                    Marketing & Communications Manager                                  Watford Business Against Crime Co-ordinator         and rough sleeping, while present in the town, is very well
                                                                                                                                            managed by all our statutory agencies.
                    Glen is responsible for the BID’s                                   John is responsible for managing the business                                                                        Vicki Costello
                    marketing and communications including                              crime reduction scheme. He works part time                                                                           Chair, Watford BID
                    the websites, social media networks, PR                             and spends his time working with retailers and      The BID has worked hard to improve our town centre. There
                                                                                                                                                                                                             Director, Watford
                    and promotional campaigns and projects.                             the police.                                         are the very visual enhancements such as the banners, floral
                                                                                                                                                                                                             Shopping Centre
                                                                                                                                            displays and the stunning Christmas lights, but what many
                                                                                                                                            of you may not see is the amount of time that is spent behind
                                                                                                                                            the scenes getting the town to where it is today, and some of
Sue Tappenden, a professional Company Secretary supports the company. The company accountant is HW Fisher.                                  the battles that have been fought along the way.

  4                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  5
Our Town Our Future BID Business Plan 2021-2026 - 5 years on
The BID                                                                                    Daniel Berko (Vice Chair)
                                                                                           Daniel is a Director and Shareholder
                                                                                           at Aspect Property Group, a local
                                                                                                                                                               Kathryn Robson
                                                                                                                                                               Kathryn is the Executive Head of
                                                                                                                                                               Strategy and Communications at
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Donna Nolan
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Donna became the Managing
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Director of Watford Borough Council

board
                                                                                           family-run property company                                         Watford Borough Council                                              in February 2020

                                                                                                                                        “Working closely with Watford BID over the last five years           “I’m a strong believer in the power of collaboration and I work
                                                                                                                                        has really shown the value they have brought to Watford              closely with partners to ensure an excellent quality of service for
                                                                                           Gary Foley                                   town centre, working with so many organisations including            the communities and residents of Watford, so that everyone can
                                                                                           Gary is the General Manager of the           the council; continuing the BID will achieve even more. By           reach their full potential. I also work with key stakeholders to
                        Vicki Costello (Chair)                                             Everyone Active Watford Central              listening and working with businesses, the BID has been able to      ensure the delivery of our ambitious and sustainable regeneration
                        Vicki is the Centre Director of                                                                                 successfully promote what is important to them and give them         plans for the borough. By profession, I am a solicitor and have
                                                                                           leisure centre
                        Watford Shopping Centre                                                                                         the opportunity to help shape the town centre’s future success.      worked both within the public and private sectors.
                                                                                                                                        The council is backing the BID’s second plan for Watford town
                                                                                                                                        centre as it will benefit businesses and residents and visitors      Less than one month into the role, I led the council’s response to
                                                                    “I moved to Watford as General Manager in 2015, at the same         too, which is more important now than ever.”                         COVID-19. This involved developing a new way of operating in a
                                                                    time as the BID was looking to secure its first term and saw then                                                                        collective and ‘cell’ approach, building a shared understanding
                                                                    the benefits it might bring to the town. Now, I feel the BID is                                                                          of what was needed and buy-in for how the council would
                        Kwame Tefe                                  integral to the town. We have benefited enormously from being                                                                            effectively respond to the pressing needs of its communities and
                        Kwame is the Manager of the Moon            part of the BID through networking, business to business deals                             Saeed Gillani                                 stakeholders.
                        Under Water, a JD Wetherspoon               and the support from the team and Board.”                                                  Saeed is the Founder of Gee
                        Pub on the High Street                                                                                                                 Kay Farrar, Accountants and                   Watford BID played a pivotal role during this time, partnering
                                                                                                                                                               Business Advisors                             with us to bring about the safe reopening of Watford town centre
                                                                                                                                                                                                             and intu. In what has been – and what will continue to be – an
                                                                                           John Gautrey                                                                                                      incredibly unsettling time, the BID has been a constant, working
“I have been the manager here for the last 11 years; but I                                 John is the Chief Operating Officer                                                                               tirelessly to reassure and encourage our town centre business
have worked for the company for 29 years. I can confidently                                of CitiPark Ltd, who manage Church,                                                                               community. We are united in our vision of a thriving town centre,
say that the reason for staying in Watford so long is because                              Gade and Sutton town centre car parks                                                                             driven by a creative and strategic plan for the future.”
of my involvement in what goes on in the town centre; firstly,                                                                                                 Tony King
through the Town Centre Partnership and then the BID.                                                                                                          Tony is the Director of Warren
                                                                                                                                                               Anthony, an independent estate
The BID has contributed to raising the status of Watford as         “With 20 years experience in operational management I joined
                                                                                                                                                               agency on Market Street
a vibrant town centre where people can shop, work, relax            Town Centre Securities in 2016, as their Chief Operating Officer                                                                                                Martin Witherden
and visit as a destination, while feeling safe and secure. This     for CitiPark who operate three car parks in Watford.                                                                                                            Martin is the Business Manager of
has been achieved through us all working together I am very                                                                                                                                                                         Metro Bank on Watford High Street
proud to be part of that.                                           Since joining Watford BID, I have worked closely with the           “We’ve been based in Watford town centre for 17 years and
                                                                    team on some significant high street improvement works and          have seen some huge improvements over that time. I’ve been
In the last four years, I have seen the pub grow from strength      campaigns, including the pedestrian entry improvement works         really impressed with the work the BID has been doing and
to strength; and I believe that a lot of it is down to increased    at Gade, the summer and winter hanging baskets placed on the        our estate agency has got involved in a number of the projects       “Metro Bank prides itself on being active in the local
footfall triggered by a lot of projects and activities organised    Church and Gade branches in addition to working closely with        they’ve been running.                                                community so when we knew we were opening a Watford
by the BID. Last year we had our best Christmas sales ever in       other businesses in the BID to roll out the ‘Designated Driver’
                                                                                                                                                                                                             store we contacted the BID to find out what they were doing
the 25 year history of the pub, which I put down to the BID’s       campaign throughout the 2018 World Cup.”                            I decided to join the BID Board in 2019 so I could play a more       and how we could get involved. I wasn’t prepared for how
spectacular lights, among other things.                                                                                                 hands-on role and help represent the independent business            active the BID was and the variety of activities that were
                                                                                                                                        sector. I think the continuation of the BID will be fundamental in   underway to make Watford a fantastic town centre. I think it
It is my hope that all other businesses too have seen the                                                                               ensuring Watford keeps on improving and remains an attractive        would be a huge loss to the town to not have the BID in place
benefits of the BID and will vote yes in the forthcoming ballot.”                          Phil Holby                                   and viable place from which to run a business.”                      for a second term and really hope that other businesses
                                                                                           Phil is the Manager of Walkabout                                                                                  here see the value too and will join me in voting yes.”
                                                                                           Bar & Comedy Loft, on The Parade
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Our Town Our Future BID Business Plan 2021-2026 - 5 years on
What is a BID and                                                                                                                          Watford – a snapshot
how does it work?                                                                                                                           Watford Borough is
                                                                                                                                                                               Watford’s
                                                                                                                                                                               population
A Business Improvement District (BID) is a                          What is Watford BID?                                                         8.3sq                          is around
business-led and business funded company,                                                                                                        miles                       96,600                     with a total of         with around 4,515
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                persons per km2 it is one of
                                                                                                                                                                                                        38,200
supported by government legislation and formed                      Watford BID Ltd is a business led, not for profit company, voted
to improve the commercial wellbeing of a
                                                                    for by town centre businesses and supported by the public                                                                                                   the most densely populated
                                                                    sector. We were established and began trading on 1 April 2016                                                                       households (2018)       districts in England
specified geographic area, the ‘BID area’.                          following a successful ballot in October 2015. Of those of you
                                                                    who voted, 77% of the total number and 73% of the total rateable
A BID has a maximum term of five years. Organisations within        value said ‘YES’.
the BID area pay an annual levy to the BID company, based on a                                                                                                                                                  Watford is
percentage of the rateable value of their premises. This money is   Over the last five years, we have been delivering against our                  Over                                                          the only
then spent on delivering the five-year business plan.               ‘BID Business Plan 2016-2021’ and represent approximately 350
                                                                    businesses and organisations in Watford town centre.
                                                                                                                                                 9 million                           There are over           Hertfordshire                  Watford is
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              home to
There are over 300 BIDs successfully operating across the                                                                                         people                           500,000 people            town within the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            over 5,900
country. Locally, the number of BIDs in Hertfordshire has risen
from two to eight BIDs in the last five years; with Hitchin and
                                                                    This business plan sets out what we will deliver in a second five
                                                                    year term, from 2021-2026.
                                                                                                                                                 pass through
                                                                                                                                                Watford Junction
                                                                                                                                                                                     living within a
                                                                                                                                                                                  20 minutes travel
                                                                                                                                                                                                                 M25                      businesses
Letchworth having already successfully secured a third and                                                                                       on an annual                     time of Watford and
second term respectively for their BIDs.                            The ballot for Watford BID will take place from 8 January 2021                   basis                                                                             and it has a higher than
                                                                                                                                                                                    5 million within
                                                                    to 4 February 2021. Ballot papers will be issued by Watford                                                                                                       average number of large
BIDs succeed because they are focused, cost-efficient and           Borough Council and must be returned to Watford Town Hall
                                                                                                                                                                                      45 minutes
entrepreneurial. They do not replace local authority and            before 5pm on 4 February 2021.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    businesses and Headquarters
police services, but they do provide additional, supplementary
resources and activities.                                           If the ballot is successful, our second five-year term will
                                                                    begin on 1 April 2021 and will generate close to £3 million of
                                                                    investment over five years. After that time is up, you will have the   GlobalData Consulting                                                 Watford
  BIDs are established through a ballot of businesses within        opportunity to review and decide if Watford BID                                                                                          is the happiest
  a defined BID area. For the BID to go ahead, two conditions       will continue for a third term.                                        Top 50 UK Shopping Centres – December 2019                      place in the East of
  must be met:                                                                                                                             Research identifies the top 50 shopping centres in the UK,
                                                                                                                                           metrics include annual turnover, size, footfall and
                                                                                                                                                                                                          England region (2019,
  • Over 50% of businesses that vote must vote in favour                                                                                                                                                Office of National Statistics,
                                                                                                                                           shopper ratings.
  •	Those voting ‘YES’ must represent more than 50% of the
     total rateable value of all the votes cast                       Remember, a        ‘YES’  vote gives
                                                                                                                                           The biggest movers – Watford
                                                                                                                                                                                                        ONS). The average happiness
                                                                                                                                                                                                          score for respondents in
                                                                      you the chance to make a real                                        Following a £180m investment programme intu Watford          Watford was 8.02, positioning
                                                                      difference to the future of Watford town centre                      has rocketed up the UK shopping centre ranks,
                                                                                                                                                                                                             Watford as the 14th
If both these conditions are fulfilled, payment of the levy           – your voice, your choice, your future – make                        up 13 places from 28th in 2018.
                                                                                                                                                                                                            happiest place in UK.
becomes mandatory for ALL eligible businesses, regardless of          your vote count.
how they voted.                                                                                                                            Watford is now overall ranked 26
                                                                                                                                           as a retail centre compared
                                                                                                                                           to 36 in 2018.

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Our Town Our Future BID Business Plan 2021-2026 - 5 years on
“ This year I was
            COVID-19:                                                                                             amazed that during these
                                                                                                               difficult times you were able to
                                                                                                             create, the same, or even, better,

            The impact                                                                                       displays. We come into Watford on
                                                                                                              the bus from Chorleywood and it
                                                                                                              is really is a joy to be greeted by

             on Watford
                                                                                                                such an array of living colour.
                                                                                                                    Thank you for the joy.”
                                                                                                                     Mrs C, Chorleywood
                                                                                                                      September 2020

                Watford town centre has not been immune to                         How the BID
                the impact of COVID-19. Several months of
                lockdown meant consumers adjusted to working                       helped reopen
                 from home, became more comfortable with                           the High Street safely
                 online shopping and increasingly nervous about
                                                                                   Throughout the pandemic the BID has continued
                 going to town centres. Some retailers, cultural                   to support local businesses and levy payers.
                  venues and food and drink establishments                         During the first lockdown, we maintained a core
                  remained closed beyond lockdown. Some have                       staff and furloughed a small part of the team.
                  closed their branches in Watford permanently,                    The core staff managed all communications with
                  including the major retailers John Lewis and                     businesses, set up a designated COVID-19 webpage,
                 Debenhams.                                                        and provided weekly e-updates. An online and brand
                                                                                   presence was maintained with regular social media posts;
                 The impact of these closures on the town, its residents, and      sharing positive community stories, fun online quizzes,
                 the way people perceive the town cannot be underestimated         encouraging locals to support their high street where they can,
                and will undoubtedly provide challenges in the short to medium     and informative updates on COVID-19 guidelines.
                term. However, there are also businesses that have taken the
                opportunity to refurbish, and new businesses are opening.          We also worked with Watford Borough Council to ensure those
                                                                                   businesses eligible for support received it.
                Throughout this pandemic we have witnessed the spirit of                                                                                 In May, Watford became the first town in Hertfordshire to have
                Watford. It is an intangible which cannot be measured or seen,     We received a grant of £18,085 from the government, which we          road closures put in place in the town centre. We funded 30 large
                but it is certainly there. Over 1,500 people volunteered to help   invested straight back into supporting the town, its businesses       flower displays to replace the fencing and cones being used to
                 out vulnerable community members; the town’s businesses           and on making sure consumers felt safe and comfortable coming         enforce parking restrictions. The road closures were extensive,
                    provided NHS workers with lunches, meals and refreshments      back into Watford. This money paid for:                               so flowers ensured the town was bright and colourful, and did
     Working          as they worked flat out; and a raft of other goods and
                       services to the third sector.                               • F ive hand sanitising units installed in the town, and the
                                                                                                                                                         not look like a closed building site.

     together                                                                         maintenance and upkeep of these units                              We also worked with Herts County Council, bus companies and
                                                                                                                                                         taxi firms to ensure access in and out of the town centre was
                       What the pandemic has shown – and something Watford         • One-way directional floor stickers throughout the town centre,
      we are           people have known for a long time – is the town feels          supported by marshals in the first few weeks of re-opening
                                                                                                                                                         still possible.
                      better and thrives when everyone pulls together, and that
     stronger        is the very essence of a BID.
                                                                                   • A COVID-19 small grants programme, which directly supported
                                                                                      24 BID businesses
                                                                                                                                                         During the November lockdown, the BID continued to support
                                                                                                                                                         levy payers and promote the importance of visiting Watford, but in
                                                                                   • Additional hand sanitiser and distancing floor stickers to other   a COVID safe way. Hands / Space / Face lamppost banners were
                                                                                      businesses                                                         also created and installed.
10                                                                                                                                                                                                                     11
Our Town Our Future BID Business Plan 2021-2026 - 5 years on
2016-2021: What has
Watford BID achieved?
Over the past five years, we have delivered a range of projects under the three themes of the
BID Business Plan 2016-2021. Here is a brief summary of the projects delivered across the town.

           Theme 1 – Enhancing the look and feel of the town                                                                                   “ Please pass on
                                                                                                                                           huge thanks for whoever
                                                                                                                                          is responsible for the Town
Helped catch shoplifters                                           Lit up the town centre at Christmas time
In 2017 we took over the management of the ‘Watford Business       We took over festive lights from Watford Borough Council,
                                                                                                                                         Centre floral stacks. They are
                                                                                                                                         superb and such a lift for the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   “ On behalf of WFRA
Against Crime’ crime reduction scheme, through which retailers     combining their investment with the BID income meant there                                                                                                                     Committee I would like
share information with each other and the police via radios to     was a Christmas light on every (suitable) lamp column in the           High Street customers and                                                                            to thank Watford BID for the
help reduce shoplifting. Since 2017 the number of participating    whole town centre for the first time ever.                           traders when shops are having                                                                      stunning floral displays throughout
retailers has increased from 41 to 63 and it is a well-used                                                                                  a tough trading time.”                                                                       the town centre. They look stunning
scheme, with high crime detection rates for members.               For 2019 and 2020, we decided to move away from standard                                                                                                                 and make such a difference to the
                                                                   Christmas lighting and invested significantly in spectacular light               Janet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         town centre. We very much appreciate
Funded CCTV cameras & improved access points                       installations to attract visitors into the town from across the            (Watford resident)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           the efforts that have been made to
                                                                   region. These included massive, illuminated baubles, the word
We contributed to the running, maintenance and development                                                                                                                                                                                   create such beautiful displays.”
of the town centre CCTV system and improvements to lighting,       ‘WATFORD’ spelled out in giant glowing letters, laser displays,
paving and welcome signage at car park entry points.               teardrop lights in 32 trees and a giant LED Christmas tree.                                                                                                                  Glenys Isaacs, Vice Chair,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Waterfields Resident
Acted on rough sleepers and street drinkers                        Celebrated excellent customer service                                                                                                                                           Association (2017)
In 2017/18 rough sleepers and street drinkers became a             We ran our annual Service Excellence Awards, which became
noticeable problem in the town. We worked with the Police and      one of the most prominent events in the town’s calendar,
                                                                           recognising the commitment of businesses to excellent                Added colour to the townscape                                     Offered free
the Safer Watford Crime Partnership and produced a leaflet
advising businesses on what to do. This multi-agency                          customer service. Over the years the judging became               We brightened up the town centre with 72 colourful lamppost       training courses
                                                                                more comprehensive, including customer votes,                   banners that featured local landmarks and icons, including        In 2016, we teamed up with Watford Borough Council and local
approach has reduced some of the issues and we
                                                                                 secret shoppers and exit surveys, culminating in a             Vicarage Road, Anthony Joshua and Cassiobury Park. 13 designs     skills providers to help you access over 250 training courses that
continue to work together on, what is an ongoing
                                                                                  black-tie awards ceremony attended by over 350                were produced in total by two young Herts designers. From 2019,   were free for your employees to attend, via European funding.
national issue.
                                                                                  guests from local businesses and sponsors.                    we also installed Christmas themed banners to complement and
                                                                                                                                                promote our Winter in Watford campaign.
Filled the town centre with flowers                                                                                                                                                                               Helped wayfinding by installing and distributing
Every summer, we installed beautiful, colourful floral
                                                                                                                                                Retained the Purple Flag                                          town centre maps
displays throughout the town centre, rising from 116                                                                                                                                                              As the town went through some major developments, we
                                                                                                                                                We worked with stakeholders to retain the town centre’s Purple
displays in year one to 215 by year five, drawing praise                                                                                                                                                          helped visitors find their way around by dressing development
                                                                                                                                                Flag Award which recognises good management of the night
from all that saw them. From 2018 we added winter flower                                                                                                                                                          hoardings & empty shop windows with large town centre maps
                                                                                                                                                time economy, the wide offer, and the way partners work
displays. We also offered excellent value, spectacular hanging                                                                                                                                                    and information wraps. Foldaway maps were also distributed via
                                                                                                                                                together to ensure the safety of people visiting.
baskets to levy payers – both summer and winter variations, with                                                                                                                                                  regional tourist information points.
our 2-4-1 offer.

 12                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              13
Our Town Our Future BID Business Plan 2021-2026 - 5 years on
2016-2021: What has Watford BID achieved?                                                                                          Promoted everything Christmas related
                                                                                                                                   We joined forces with Watford Borough Council, the Palace
                                                                                                                                                                                                     Showcased the night-time economy
                                                                                                                                                                                                     We have promoted Watford town centre’s wide and varied
                                                                                                                                   Theatre, Watford Colosseum and intu shopping centre and           night-time economy with a range of promotional activities
                                                                                                                                   created Winter in Watford. All events and activities happening    including bus back adverts, social media campaigns, as well
                                                                                                                                   in Watford over the festive period were promoted on a dedicated   as contributing to the purchase of a bus for the Street Angels.
            Theme 2 – Promotion, marketing and events                                                                              website, backed by a strong advertising campaign. The campaign    We co-ordinated and managed the Purple Flag award which
                                                                                                                                   even went on the road, with bus backs promoting Watford. By       recognises the management and offer of night-time economy.
                                                                                                                                   2019, the website received three times more visitors than the
Switched on our Christmas lights                                    Created & distributed Watford Food & Drink map                 previous year.                                                                 Launched the Watford Gift Card
In 2016, we celebrated our first Christmas by inviting a stilt-     We featured all the pubs, bars, cafes, restaurants and take-                                                                                  In February 2020, the BID launched the Watford
walking, illuminated Snow King and Queen, to turn on our lights.    aways in the BID area in a fold out leaflet and map,           Rewarded responsible drinking during                                            Gift Card, which is free to all BID businesses.
In 2017/18 there was no switch-on in the town due to limitations    which was then distributed to hotels, shopping
caused by the intu development, so we ran alternative Christmas     centres and other visitor information points                   World Cup                                                                        The programme is designed to lock in additional
                                                                                                                                   We teamed up with CitiPark car parks and several                                  money for participating businesses and raise
activities. Then in 2019 we celebrated our new lights with a        around the region.                                                                                                                               awareness of those businesses. Promotion of the
switch on event attended by over 10,000 people.                                                                                    pubs and bars in the town, and created the Designated
                                                                                                                                   Driver campaign, offering free non-alcoholic drinks for                      card continues into 2020/21. In 2020, 35 businesses
                                                                      Did you know…                                                designated drivers during World Cup games.                          were participating in the scheme.
Ran ‘Watford Weekender’ promotions
We invited businesses to run special offers, events or activities     •	The Christmas Lights were seen by
                                                                         317,000 people across Watford BID’s                       Getting behind Watford FC                                         Launched a Visitor Guide
during our Watford Weekenders, which we promoted across all                                                                                                                                          In September 2016, Watford hosted the Master Golf Tournament at
media channels. The number of businesses participating climbed           social media channels                                     When Watford reached the FA Cup final for the first time since
                                                                                                                                   1984, we encouraged businesses to decorate their frontages and    The Grove Hotel, the BID saw an opportunity to promote Watford
by 25% from 2016 to 2017. In 2018 we added 36 new businesses          •	There was 96% visitor satisfaction rate with                                                                                to a new audience and produced a Watford visitor guide which was
to the activities, weekend footfall was up significantly and             Winter in Watford activities                              ran a best dressed window competition. It really contributed to
                                                                                                                                           a fantastic atmosphere in the town and created a lot of   distributed on the buses to and from the tournament. It was then
80% of participants received enquiries                                                                                                                                                               distributed via visitor information points across the region.
or customers due the                                                                                                                              positivity over social media.
Weekender.
                                                                                                                                                            Supported outdoor theatre:
                                                                                                                                                               Imagine Festival                         Launched
  Did you know in 2018…                                                      “ The set menus                                                                       Each year the Imagine Festival       Visit Watford
  •	Thomas Sabo was the best
                                                                           are a great idea – if                                                                     brings thousands of people         In 2019, following
     performing store in the UK for the Saturday of the                  you are on a budget it                                                                         into the town to see the        extensive research,
     Weekender                                                          helps to know how much                                                                             spectacular Friday           Visit Watford was formed.
  •	Runners World had its busiest Saturday of the year                you will roughly spend and                                                                            evening show and           Visit Watford is funded
                                                                        encourage more people                                                                                  a weekend of live        via a range of partners, including the BID – and is used
  •	Cath Kidston sales were up 36% on the previous year
                                                                             to take part.”                                                                                      street theatre.        to support and deliver the BID’s consumer marketing.
  •	Everyone Active signed up 9 new members                                                                                                                                       We promoted,         The Visit Watford team are based in the BID office and
                                                                            Website feedback                                                                                        supported and       managed on a day to day basis by the BID, reporting to
                                                                                                                                                                                     sponsored          their own partnership Board.
Launched Watford Food & Drink Week                                                                                                                                                     this event.
Our first Food & Drink Week ran in 2017, with 52 businesses                                                                                                                                             Visit Watford undertakes a variety of destination marketing
offering bespoke offers. By 2019, it had evolved to being £5,                                                                                                                                           activities for the town including the online promotion of
£10 and £15 set menus, which narrowed participation to                                                                                                                                                  local businesses driving football to increase sales. With
21 restaurants but proved very successful with consumers.                                                                                                                                               strong levels of engagement from over 5,000 followers on
It culminated with a tasting festival in the new development                                                                                                                                            Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, its dedicated website
of intu. Visitor figures to the website doubled in 2019 to 2,900                                                                                                                                        at www.visitwatford.com includes full listings of firms
visitors. 73% of participating restaurants said they gained                                                                                                                                             offering a comprehensive range of products and services
new customers.                                                                                                                                                                                          across the area including town-centre hotels, tourist
                                                                                                                                                                                                        attractions, cafes, bars and independent retail outlets,
                                                                                                                                                                                                        along with the latest guide to scheduled cultural, leisure
                                                                                                                                                                                                        and business events.
 14                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   15
Our Town Our Future BID Business Plan 2021-2026 - 5 years on
2016-2021: What has Watford BID achieved?                                                                                                 Watched Watford Grow
                                                                                                                                          The intu extension works started in March 2016 and completed in
                                                                                                                                                                                                              Hosted Professional Development Day for
                                                                                                                                                                                                              other BIDs
                                                                                                                                          September 2018. During this time, we tracked the developments       We were asked to showcase the work we do in Watford to other
                                                                                                                                          with weekly photographs and updates – including the High Street     BIDs around the country by hosting a British BIDs Professional
                                                                                                                                          improvements – and posted them on Facebook and Instagram
            Theme 3 – Working together to                                                                                                 under the hashtag #WatchWatfordGrow. This meant people could
                                                                                                                                                                                                              Development Day. This took place in April 2019.

                                                                                                                                          see how quickly progress was being made and also provided a
            secure the future of the town                                                                                                 fascinating insight into the transformation of the town.
                                                                                                                                                                                                              Representing Watford BID and business interests
                                                                                                                                                                                                              Our Chief Executive is the Chair of the Hertfordshire Vibrant
                                                                                                                                                                                                              Towns Group; is on the Association of Town and City Management
Supported the development of the town                                Prior to COVID-19 the average dwell time was 89 minutes in 2019      Received British BIDs Accreditation                                 (ATCM) national Advisory Board, the British BIDs Board and
The continuing development of the town is vital for its economic     up from 82 minutes on the previous year. This was higher than        In 2018, we achieved British BIDs national accreditation. Only      Visit Herts Partnership Board, plus locally she represents
and social viability, and much of our Chief Executive’s time has     the national average, and higher than competitor towns.              a small number of BIDs across the country have received this        the BID and its levy payers on local stakeholder groups: Big
been spent working with partners, in particular Watford Borough                                                                           award, which recognises best practice in communications with        Business Connect, Cultural Leaders and One Watford. During
Council and intu to ensure Watford is a joined up town, which can    Awarded over £18k for individual business                            levy payers, governance and marketing. As part of the assessment    the pandemic she was a member of the Watford Together group
be enjoyed and accessed by all.                                      improvements                                                         process, our financial management was scrutinised.                  and the Watford Business Re-opening Strategy Wider Taskgroup.
                                                                     In March 2018, we launched a small grant scheme aimed at                                                                                 Over the past five years, we have supported and offered guidance
In 2017, we commissioned a transport study. It was this piece        helping levy payers develop their business and improve the           Won a national Place Management Award                               to developing and new BIDs across the country.
of work that brought together Herts County Council, Watford          quality of their customer experience. The maximum grant              We won the national British BIDs Place Management Award
Borough Council, intu and the developers to resolve how the High     available was £2,000 or 50% of the total costs. In total, over       2018 for our contribution to the High Street improvement works.
Street looked and worked around the new intu extension.              £18,000 was awarded to businesses in the town. Grants ranged         The award acknowledges outstanding projects delivered by BIDs
                                                                     from £316 to £2,000, and covered improving equipment at a            around the country.
We pushed for all High Street works to be completed in tandem
with intu works, so there was no further disruption to businesses.
                                                                     live music venue, to shop front and signage improvements, to                                                                                  “ It is terrific news
                                                                     businesses re-configuring their internal layout, and improving/or    Achieved industry recognised qualification                           for Watford BID, gaining
                                                                     developing their online presence.                                    Two of our members of staff studied for and passed the              Accreditation, winning the
Clarendon Road improvements                                                                                                               British BIDs Certificate in BID Management course with           National BID Award and having a
We were instrumental in securing £4.8m of grant funding for          Supported police in reducing knife crime                             Jill gaining a distinction and coming top in the class.         key member of staff graduate with
improvements between Watford Junction and the town centre,           We supported an innovative pilot project with Hertfordshire police                                                                 the certificate in BID Management. All
The first phase included filling in an underpass. Improvements to    and intu, which has funded two police officers who have been
the crossing were completed in 2019.
                                                                                                                                                                                                      three were celebrated at the British BIDs
                                                                     working with vulnerable children across Watford, showing them                                                                     conference, and all three are a sign that
                                                                     the dangers of gang and knife crime.
                                                                                                                                                                                                      the levy payers of Watford are receiving a
Monitored footfall and dwell time
                                                                                                                                                                                                       truly excellent service. We congratulate
We entered into an agreement with Watford Borough Council,           Raised money for St Mary’s Church restoration                                                                                        Watford BID on these successes.”
where they managed the footfall camera contract, via                 In 2017, Watford Borough Council installed commemorative
Springboard, and we managed footfall monitoring. In March            Graham Taylor boards to dress up a recently vacated building                                                                             Professor Chris Turner,
2020 the Council’s contract with Springboard ended and a new         next to the church. The boards were given to the BID to auction
company is being sourced to take on the footfall count.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Chief Executive,
                                                                     off to fans, raising over £700 for the major refurbishment of                                                                                 British BIDs
                                                                     the Church.
In early 2020 footfall was high, and the dramatic impact of the
lockdown on the town was recorded:
                                                                     Supported Shopmobility scheme
                                                                     We recognise that for Watford town centre to be welcoming it
                 2018            2019             2020               is important that there is access for all, so have provided a £5k
 January         755,177         885,586          1,091,502          grant to Shopmobility every year for five years. Shopmobility is
 February        732,402         1,040,007        921,913            run by a team of volunteers from Church car park and its free
                                                                     mobility scooters are well used in Watford.
 March           878,520         1,365,644        202,021

 16                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       17
Our Town Our Future BID Business Plan 2021-2026 - 5 years on
The BID in numbers                                                                                                           What our town will lose
Floral displays                             2016                                   2020
                                                                                                                             if you vote ‘NO’
                                            116                                    215                                       NO… floral displays                                                NO... support for Pubwatch
Pre-BID    20     hanging baskets           floral displays                        floral displays                           NO… Christmas lights                                               NO… funding for the development of the CCTV system
                                                                                   including those for COVID road closures
                                                                                                                             NO… one to collaborate with the police & other partners           NO… support for Shopmobility, which promotes access for all
Annual Service                                                 £ ££                                                                regarding street drinkers, rough sleeping and                      in our town centre
                                                                   ££                                                              anti-social behaviour
                                                                                                                                                                                                NO… business networking and social events, specifically for
Excellence Awards                                                                                                            NO… one championing the town and its businesses, locally or             town centre businesses
                                                                            £
                                                      23%
                                                                                                                                   nationally
                                                                             £                                               NO... dedicated marketing of Watford town centre
                                                                                                                                                                                                NO… relevant information sharing with businesses regarding
                                                                                                                                                                                                      local news and COVID-19 updates
                                                   additional income                                                         NO… business crime reduction scheme                                NO… passionate, caring BID team dedicated to the prosperity
                                                   generated over the              Over                                                                                                               of our town centre
                                                                                                                             NO… BID website & social media to promote town’s offer and
                                                                                   10,000 people
                                                   lifetime of the BID
      360               £12k                                                                                                       individual businesses                                        NO… innovative, dynamic initiatives which aid economic
                                                                                                                                                                                                      recovery and future growth
   business
                                                                                    attended the 2019 lights switch-on
                                                                                                                             NO… small business grants
representatives        sponsorship           (over and above the levy collected)                                             NO... promotional activities that encourage footfall around the
   attended               raised                                                                                                   town such as Food & Drink Week, Watford Weekenders,
                                                                                                                                   town centre trails
                                                                                                                                                                                                       NO…
                                                                                           Retail Business Against           NO… industry insights into best practice occurring in 300+                 £3m of
                                                   48%                                      Crime members have
                                                                                               increased from
                                                                                                                                   BIDs/towns across the UK                                          investment for

                                                                                                                                                                                                                           YES…
                                                                                                                             NO… Service Excellence Awards                                          the town centre

          £300m                                    detection rate for
                                                                                               41 to 63                      NO… funding for initiatives to tackle crime
      invested in town centre
                                                   WBAC members                                                              NO... one to work with stakeholders to shape local
       over the past 5 years                                                                                                       developments and improvements                                                        Watford BID really
                                              £18,500                                                                        NO… benefitting from new initiatives and technology, such as
                                                                                                                                   the Watford Gift Card, and Employee app
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        is that essential to
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      our local businesses,
        24
                     businesses
                     awarded COVID
                                              awarded to BID
                                              businesses for                                         Over   4,000            NO… Visit Watford and targeted consumer marketing                                        employers, residents,
                                                                            18,000                 entrants to Christmas
                     grants, plus hand        improvement grants                                                             NO... lamppost banners
                     sanitiser and floor                                                           Calendar competition
                                                                                                                                                                                                                       economy and future.
                     stickers distributed                                   new followers                                    NO… one to manage the Purple Flag Award application
                     to BID business                                        to our social
                                                                            media channels
 18                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        19
Moving forward: planning the                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               How the BID has kept in touch
next five years of Watford BID                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             & shaped its future plans
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           Our communications with businesses                                  More recent events have focused on levy payers getting to know
  It is wrong to say we live in especially uncertain times, the                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            We recognise that there is no one size fits all approach when       each other in a more social environment, understanding what is
  future is always uncertain.                                                                                                                                                                                      Five factors for                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        communicating with our levy payers.                                 in the town, and how they can work together. These have been
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    good growth:                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               particularly well attended, with the last event in 2019 attended by
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               60 people.
“We are operating in a very different environment to that of                                                                                                        1. Start and end with citizen                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          For the past five years the BID has sent monthly e-updates to all
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           businesses on its database. During the COVID-19 pandemic, this
12 months ago, and we are facing a very unusual, uncertain                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   e            2

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  outcomes
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    –                   Issu

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              s
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             c 2016

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          New                                                                                                                                                                                                  How your feedback shapes the BID’s future
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    De

future. The planning that we originally put in place has had to                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            increased to weekly updates, to ensure businesses received the
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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      DJ and           inati         disp                                                                                      BID
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   Adm
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         atfordbi
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            k, culm firework                                                         or at

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               improved projects over the years.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       Star                                                                                         h, Mar Manager                   a@w
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    ing                                                       989                                               ivan

however, we have to be realistic in our expectations, the budgets
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             tand                                                                              Leac
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  23 919
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        outs                                                                              Kate           ons
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   icati        o.uk
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       on 019 Head of ent
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               mun         bid.c
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           Com       tford
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Team                                                 @wa

                                                                                                                                             5. Back up your ambitions with
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                lla,        lopm            kate
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    BID               Jill Faie s & Deve .uk
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          t the                              ation
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Contac                                   Oper             id.co
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   ordb
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          ion,                               watf
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Man                               jill@
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               Maria       utive d.co.uk
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    f Exec
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               Chie        atfordbi

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           Once a year the BID holds an AGM meeting, which all company
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     ia@w
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                mar

in the first two years of a new BID will be tight, this combined
with any continuing COVID restrictions, means we will have to be                                                                                                                                                 deliverable plans                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  – Iss
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         ue 1
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             0                                                                                                                             members and levy payers are invited to, and produces an Annual      We wanted to make sure that you, our businesses, shaped
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        s
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               2019
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           Report, which is available online, posted to stakeholders, and      the future of the BID. As part of our commitment to you, we
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    New
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           Dec
adaptable and creative in the way we approach things. We will
                                                                                                                                                                                               PWC – Good Growth for
have two exciting projects which we can carry through to                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   hand delivered to every business in the BID area.                   undertook a mid-term review of the BID to make sure we were
                                                                                                                                                                                                    Cities 2019
the summer of 2021, we hope these will generate footfall                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       on the right track and delivering what we said we would, plus
and interest in the town.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              s                                                                                                                                                                                                   All the above is in addition to the regular face to face visits     we also asked what could be improved and what you would like
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 stma
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             Chri es to                                                                                                                                                                                                    carried out by the BID team when developing projects or looking     to see moving forward. We undertook an online survey, plus
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             com ord with                                                                                                                                                                                                  into the viability of new projects.                                 Storecheckers visited businesses in town to talk in person with
Our 2021-2026 business plan is focused on continuing to                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       Watf tacular
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               spec ch-on!                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     BID levy payers.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            g
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      antin

deliver what levy payers want from us, but this is a very
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                ench
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          also           drum
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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           We also share all information over our social media channels:
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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Town
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different world we are all operating in, so we know
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                                                                                                                                                                                                                             Our Future
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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram.
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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               In the lead up to producing the business plan, we sent out 356
                                                                                                                            g to
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      ou          Watfo                                                                               es            ge

                                                                                                                                                                                                                             Our
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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                On Su tford tow r seen in                                                                                                         inc           sta                                         illu

we will have to be flexible and maintain a constant
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                                                                                                                                        :                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  om                                                                                         thous
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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             y                                                              rd tow
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       work

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               surveys, each week for 4 weeks, and offered a series of Zoom
                                                                                          ll de                               ram               e                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    up in                                                            worth                                                          Watfo
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Switc ich was

dialogue with our levy payers, to ensure we are on
                                                                                     D wi                              prog hance th                                                       .                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 ing fire                   Lights
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              n.
                                                                             the BI                            d PR                                                                 area                                                                                                                                                                                                                              stunn                                           t wh          our tow ted
                                                                        ar 4                            g an                 o en                                          e BID                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                tmas tainmen                   d in                                                        .uk

                                                                                                                                                    2018
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            na

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                                                                                       ed               s,                d  co                            ation        e  to                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           The             nt fes ly atmosp m 2pm                                                                atford hn HattinghAgainst Crimn.police.uk

                                                                                                                                  port
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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               bri          friend place fro                                                             es@w        Jo                   rts.pn
                                                                      1. An                                                          all th                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      family          took                                                             quiri                     esses
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     h@he

                                                                                                               al Re
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             BIuD                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Our business networking events
                                                                                  rd br             bu                                                ed                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 at en                        Busin

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               meetings to all businesses. We also hand delivered our annual
                                                                                              n to                          gnise get involv                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              of the in event                                                                                                     atting
                                                                           Watfo

track to deliver against the business plan and
                                                                                       icatio                        reco                                                       wn an
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                                                                                                   s wi                .                              nt fea                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Team                                ting
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       &         rdbid.

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                                                                                 rvice       esse in Watford                                  porta wn.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             e BI   D                                  rke         wa tfo
                                                                          2. Se
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Ma

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    sses
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                                                                                      busin                                          an im                                              s.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               act th
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                r BID
                                                                               More er service                               to be ross the
                                                                                                                                                      to                      o year town,                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Cont                                                       marke
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                sine y to
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               report and used the opportunity to build our email database,
                                                                                                                                                                        xt tw                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             ham
                                                                                                                     inue

business aspirations.”
                                                                                                                                                                                      the                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           n                                                Leed
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          g bu
                                                                                      m                                                                           e ne
                                                                                                                                ays ac
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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               tor

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           The best ambassadors for the town are its businesses, their
                                                                                                                                                           er th                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             Freya ministra
                                                                                                      , will the displ                                                                                                                                                                                                                              it                                                                           Maria ecutive                                                                       co.uk
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                                                                                                                                                    ed ov                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      .co.uk                                         rdbid.
                                                                                                lays                                         hanc             light                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Chief
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Ex
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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Ad
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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  the tosperity
                                                                                                              ll be dshire’s                                                   som                ethe                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        n Gr
                                                                                                                                                Dece                                                                                                                                                                                      u                                                                                                                  r
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     infl
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       Jaso            nage

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               recognising that face to face consultation is not desirable or
                                                                                                     ts , wi                                er                            ion             o tog                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       .uk
                                                                                                                   rtfor                 ov                        miss                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          t Ma         bid.co
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                                                                                                                                  visit                    d com                                                                                                                                                                            st in                                                                                       Projec atford

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           employees, and Watford residents. Our networking events are
                                                                                        stive                             e to                                            link
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      inve omic pro
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 @w
                                                                                 4. Fe hope to br the plac                                        ers an il which                              .                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         jason
                                                                                                                                        e bann                                       ’s offer
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       eco otential
                                                                                      We              tford                                             a tra                                           will                                                                                                                                n
                                                                                             ing Wa                            tall th creating                              tford es which
                                                                                       mak                          will ins          ers                           ote Wa
                                                                                                                                                            prom and incen
                                                                                                                                                                                      tiv
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              p
                                                                                                            s, we the bann
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        and
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               permitted on a large scale due to the pandemic.
                                                                                                    nn  er                                           he  lp
                                                                                             wn ba            sed on                           e to
                                                                                                                                                         disco
                                                                                                                                                                 unts                                            u
                                                                                                                                                                                                         ep yo

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           for businesses getting to know each other, the BID team and
                                                                                     5. To ptures ba                                   ntinu
                                                                                          scul                               will co ed to offer visitors.                                inue
                                                                                                                                                                                                  to ke
                                                                                                                      eks,                                                                                   re
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                                                                                                od &
                                                                                                       Dr             be              ly to                            BID         nd an
                                                                                                                                                                                            d              .
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                                                                                         6. Fo       esse              colle                               sts.          d beyo and natio
                                                                                                                                                     tere          n an
                                                                                              Busin omoted                                  ess in          e tow            nally                              ’s
                                                                                                                                                                                                      e town

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           the Board.
                                                                                               all be
                                                                                                       pr
                                                                                                                                rd  busin ing in th ally, regio                                  t th
                                                                                                                            fo               en                                          ppor
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                                                                                                    pres            ou                 e                           e to                                                                                                                                                                                                                                .uk
                                                                                             7. Re med ab                     ses ar                        ntinu                                                                                                                                                                                                                                bid.co

                    Maria Manion
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                                                                                                           rd’s bu                        e BID                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       .wat
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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  s
                                                                                                          ppor
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             2019
                                                                                                     Su                ra                                                                                           serv
                                                                                                 8.           t prog                                                                                          e the     ides
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Mar

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              New
                                                                                                       even                                                                                         you us ace prov
                                                                                                                                                                                             uch

                    Chief Executive,
                                                                                                                                                                                      w m BID in pl wn.
                                                                                                                                                                             on ho

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           Over the years, we have held different styles of events at
                                                                                                                                             d                                                 a             the to
                                                                                                                                volve
                                                                                                                                                                        nds             ving
                                                                                                                                                                 depe          u. Ha e whole of
                                                                                                                                                        e BID wn to yo
                                                                                                                   ing in                                                                                              k
                                                                                                                                                   t th                            for  th                          .u
                                                                                                         Gett                          u ge
                                                                                                                                             t ou
                                                                                                                                                   emen
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                                                                                                                                at yo
                                                                                                                       of wh el of involv togeth
                                                                                                                                                                 er po                         atford
                                                                                                                                                                                    ww.w

                    Watford BID
                                                                                                              value                                rk
                                                                                                                                                                            at: w

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           different times of days, at different locations within the BID
                                                                                                       The                     lev         to wo
                                                                                                                        The
                                                                                                        avail
                                                                                                                able.
                                                                                                                           nity
                                                                                                                                  for all                          e BID
                                                                                                                  portu                                    out th
                                                                                                          an op                                   ion ab
                                                                                                                                         ormat
                                                                                                                             ce  ss inf                        :              99  81
                                                                                                                       n ac                                es
                                                                                                                                                                      923
                                                                                                                                                                           91
                                                                                                             You ca                                r offic

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           area. We started with the more traditional B2B style events with
                                                                                                                                            at ou .uk or 01
                                                                                                                                     t us
                                                                                                                        n co
                                                                                                                              ntac             bid.co
                                                                                                                                         ford
                                                                                                                Or ca es@wat
                                                                                                                         iri
                                                                                                                 enqu

                                                                                                                                                                                                   ards
                                                                                                                                                                                             al aw    n                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    presentations and workshops – these were particularly helpful,
                                                                                                                                                                                       Annu rate towesses                                                                                                                    ed

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             19
                                                                                                                                                                                            b
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    award
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              was                                              n

                                                                                                                                                                                       cele re busin
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“ Watford BID has
2021-2026:
                                                                                                 Understanding the needs of                                                               Encouraging business
                                 Theme 1 – Safeguarding                                          our communities
                                                                                                                                                    been incredibly supportive of
                                                                                                                                                  our charity Home-Start both with         development and networking
                                 the future of Watford                                                                                         providing funding and an introduction

Planning for
                                                                                                                                                                                             We will:
                                                                                                   We recognise Watford’s local             to other businesses in Watford. Their grant
                                                                                                                                             enabled us to create a confidential space       • Design a series of business
                         Influencing and place shaping will be at the very heart of                communities are at the heart of
                                                                                                                                            for us to meet with volunteers and families       development and networking events
                          everything the BID does. It reinforces the BID’s position with other     the town’s future success – it
                                                                                                                                                                                               which will cover themes such as:
                                                                                                                                            we provide services for. More recently their

the future
                          partners and stakeholders, and the role of the BID in shaping and        is their confidence and support
                                                                                                                                                                                               finance/legal; marketing; social
                           influencing how Watford will look in the next five to 15 years.         for Watford which will help the        support meant we could invest in the resources      media; procurement; international
                                                                                                   town bounce back fully.                 we needed to begin to return to our charitable     trade; managing growth and
                            Influencing growth and development across                                                                         activities, safely, minimising the risks of    wellness/mindset
                             the town and encouraging entrepreneurship                                                                                 transmitting COVID-19.”              • In Year 2 the Chamber will deliver
                                                                                                 We will:
                                                                                                                                                  Emma Power, CEO, Home-Start                     ‘hub’ events and an extension of the
                             We will:                                                            • Consult with local resident groups,                                                         Watford Business Festival. Levy payers
                                                                                                    keeping them fully informed of                       Watford & Three Rivers
                             • Monitor and maintain a vacancy list for the BID area and                                                                                                      and their employees will be given priority
                                identify market gaps                                                developments and plans for Watford                                                      access to these events and the opportunity to
                              • Meet with agents and the Council every six months, to           • Support local community groups efforts                                              host events and pitch their own business
                                 monitor trends, and identify hard to shift units and work on       in utilising redundant space in the town in a
                                 the concept of pop-up units and flexible workspace, with           creative and innovative way                                                Championing the third sector and charities
                                 ‘in/out’ rental options                                         • Work with the Elected Mayor, the councils and utilise local
                                                                                                    consultations to inform communication and planning                We will:
                              • Represent the interest of our businesses, the need to
                                  adapt, and maintain good and clear communication with          • Work with the local cultural leaders, community leaders and      • Link businesses with support agencies and charities as part
                                  the people who use the town                                       religious leaders to reach our broader communities, to ensure        of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) activities; the priority
                                                                                                    as many people as possible are aware of Watford’s offer, both        will be to support local services and charities first
                               • Circulate information on key planning applications and
                                  consult with the Board to ensure a full and balanced              socially and economically                                         • Encourage individual businesses to become a local charity
                                  commentary is presented                                                                                                                advocate or champion

                              Supporting sustainable transport, and
                                                                                                   In a new review of the high street titled Build, Back, Better,      Open to new ideas and staying ahead of
                                                                                                   Bill Grimsey has recommended high streets take on a
                              improving the town’s infrastructure                                                                                                      the game
                                                                                                   “massive shift in power” away from central government,
                                                                                                   instead empowering local communities to develop                     We will:
                                         We will:                                                  their high streets. He argues that for town centres and
                                                                                                                                                                       • Continue to ensure that all business views are represented at a
                                             • Continue to push for a sustainable                 high streets to thrive after COVID-19, they will need to
                                                                                                                                                                          national level
                   “ It is clear that           transport interchange in the town centre,
                                                  improvements to the High Street, with
                                                                                                   rediscover their community purpose.
                                                                                                                                                                       • Continue to participate in national discussions on your behalf
                multifunctional town                                                                                                                                      and inform submissions to central government across a range
             centres are on the rise and            improvements to Watford High Street            “Faced with the huge challenge of rebuilding our high
                                                                                                   streets, we are presented with a golden opportunity to                 of topics, including the Business Rate Review and the state of
            we now have the opportunity              Station and improved access to
                                                                                                   repair their neglected social fabric, lead a values-led                the High Street
            to accelerate this to meet the            nearby Waterfields Retail Park
                                                                                                   period of social renewal and deliver lasting change.”               • Embrace new ideas and undertake imaginative and innovative
           challenge of bringing back into            • Continue discussions with
                                                                                                                                                                          projects that will make Watford an attractive destination. The
              productive use, redundant                 partners, about a range of
                                                                                                                                                                          BID will however always manage the risk to ensure the interests
                                                        sustainable transport proposals
                    retail space. ”                    for the town
                                                                                                                                                                          of levy payers remain the top priority
                                                                                                                                                                       • Continue to be recognised as one of the Country’s highest
               Mark Robinson, chair of               • Work with the district and county
                                                                                                                                                                          performing BIDs, with Watford being recognised as a centre for
               High Streets Task Force             councils to ensure commercial,
                                                                                                                                                                          excellence
                                                 consumer and business interests are
                                              represented in any discussions regarding                                                                                 • Learn as much as possible about the BID industry and
                                           the town’s future and future developments                                                                                      lessons from other BIDs to ensure we deliver the best
                                                                                                                                                                          service we can
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