This will not be reported in the Bury Free Press
Currently, the West Suffolk Council are working with a private company called The Mosaic Partnership. This company was set up to assist local authorities to set up Business Improvement Districts (BIDs). The aim of a BID is to improve the town centre areas and to assist businesses to thrive. As the editor of the Bury Free Press is ALSO a director fot the Our Bury St Edmunds BID, the news in the Bury Free Press with not be objective, but be biased news.
Yorkshire Coastal BID Ltd
Take for instance Yorkshire Coastal BID Ltd., yes, its a private company. The two councils East Riding and Scarborough collect the “levy” from the businesses, which is supposed to be spent on improving the area. However, East Riding has issued 89 notices for non payment from 20/21 and 21/22, but Scarborough hasn’t issued any with 330 payments outstanding from 1st year 19/20. There is over 1250 outstanding from 20/21 and 21/21. Why is this, you might ask. Businesses here do not WANT a BID, and they are making it very public in Yorkshire that they do not want to be dictated to by a private company. see this article
Our Bury St Edmunds BID
Another example, closer to home this time. Our Bury St Edmunds BID, has been running since 2011 when they took over from Bid for Bury. The current BID collects £440,000pa from the businesses of the town centre, and also claims money from the West Suffolk Council for 14 places. These include car parks and public toilets. So of the £440,000, £120,000 goes on 3 salaries, that of Mark Cordell, Mike Kirkham and Jackie Regan. Another £12,000 goes on their premises in Woolhall Street.
During the 2020 Lockdown, when many business were closed and struggling to make ends meet, the BID were still there, sending out their invoices for the levy. Personally I prefer to call this a Tax. Its odd isn’t it, that the company in town that made the money they were expecting to was Our Bury St Edmunds. Its also odd that a growing number of businesses are getting genuinely worried about what they get for the money they pay.
The Mosaic Partnership
Lets move on. As I mentioned the West Suffolk Council and a c̶a̶b̶a̶l̶ / cabinet of councillors are working with The Mosaic Partnership to install a BID into Haverhill. I have been reliably informed that this cabal, has already signed off public money to The Mosaic Partnership. The Partnership wanted them to try and keep this under the radar, so they said, “don’t make a big song and dance about it, we will sort it for you”
Cabinet members are…
Councillor John Griffiths MBE (Chair)
Councillor Sara Mildmay-White (Vice-Chair)
Councillor Sarah Broughton
Councillor Carol Bull
Councillor Andy (Andrew) Drummond ((who happens to be a board director of the Newmarket BID “Love Newmarket))
Councillor Robert Everitt
Councillor Susan Glossop (who happens to be a board director of the Newmarket BID “Love Newmarket)
Councillor Jo (Joanna) Rayner
Councillor David Roach
Councillor Peter Stevens
more Adverts than Articles
Now why will you not hear about this in the Bury Free Press? Well the editor is Barry Peters. He is a board director for Our Bury St Edmunds BID. You will never hear a word against them in that “newspaper” Its no wonder I was blocked from commenting on their social media, when I pointed out that there are more Adverts than Articles
So, tell me, are you happy that your taxes are being used in this fashion?
Should a public toilet get a vote for a BID?
Should the West Suffolk Council abstain from Voting?
Are you happy how the West Suffolk Council are spending public money?
Remember that The Haverhill Arts Venue had money redirected from them for The Apex
West Suffolk Council Pervert BID Vote
Our Bury St Edmunds – More BID Failures
Is Our Bury St Edmunds BID looking Desperate?
Car Parks & Toilets given the Vote for BID
Here’s a selection of articles exploring some of the negative aspects and risks of BIDs
Police fraud probe at South West Business Improvement District
Aberystwyth BID renewal ballot March 2021
you may have hit that nail on the proverbial head there…
As you say How many councillors get in without even being voted in as no one else stands. I had the same conversation with someone the other day, and I seem to recall in this area is 8, and thats 8 too many who have not been challenged.
The West Suffolk Council are behaving like their leaders in Conservative Central Office.
Their mantra is Remove funding from all public bodies ( councils, courts, the NHS, BBC/C4, etc) and outsource it to businesses – prerferably those with connections to the party or their donors.
WTF does a BID actually do? What do they do thats better than the old “chamber of commerce”
Looks like cronyism to me.
These councillors should get real and realise that the old model of a town centre and consumerism is dead.
Shops will come and go – as they always have. No amount of tinkering or advertising will stop this.
The new model is leisure, education, housing, collaborative office space, hospitality, and shopping. A space should always be made for nature – it needs to be there as well.
As always, a little bit of enlightenment for electorate would assist at election time to try and remove the serf mentality and a few more non-Tory candidates in our rural areas are needed. How many of these councillors get in without having to win an election?