Don't miss a story sign up to the North Devon Gazette's FREE daily newsletter CLICK HERE

Barnstaple traders asked to consider second Bid for town

12:00 10 June 2014

Barnstaple High Street.

Barnstaple High Street.


Shop keepers asked to complete straw poll on new five-year Business Improvement District.

Barnstaple High Street.Barnstaple High Street.

BUSINESSES are being asked whether they would be willing to continue contributing to a fund to promote Barnstaple town centre.

Only a handful of the 430 town centre businesses have so far responded to a straw poll issued by BID Barnstaple asking if they would back a second five-year Bid when the current one ends in March next year.

Traders currently pay one per cent of their rateable value into a fund to pay for extra marketing and promotion to attract shoppers.

Speaking to the Gazette on Wednesday, BID Barnstaple co-ordinator Sue Rawle said only nine from a possible 430 town centre businesses had responded to the straw poll.

“I am concerned for the town that they fully understand and consider the pros and cons and make a balanced opinion,” she said.

“If there is no Bid, there will still be support for traders but there will be no budget.

“Please let us know what you think by filling in the poll online or by handing in a completed form to our office on the Square.

“It is not legally binding in any way; this is all about feedback – would you like another Bid or not?”

Mrs Rawle said the bulk of the money spent in the current Bid had gone on marketing and events, and that figures showed an increase in visitors to the town, and a decrease in empty shops.

“I think it’s been a success without a doubt,” she said.

“It’s about the delivery of a whole raft of things that drive footfall into the town centre – what they do when they get here is up to the shop holders themselves.

“One thing we were not able to achieve for the town was a big electronic board, which unfortunately fell at the last hurdle.

“But we’ve delivered over and above on everything else and the footfall figures prove it. Statistically we are delivering on footfall and that is the whole aim of Bid in a nutshell.

“Even at the very worst, when we had the effects of the credit crunch, only 8.71 per cent of town centre shops were vacant, compared with the national average of 15 per cent.

“Now, vacancy rates are down and the High Street has been filled all bar two units.

“I am not saying that we got it all right; there is lots of room for improvement. But you always have to have a plan of action and if we work together we can achieve a lot, such as television and bus advertising.”

Traders can visit to register their views, or alternatively, drop in a completed form at the Bid Barnstaple office on the Square.

Other News Stories

41 minutes ago
Lorraine Cleverdon and Chris Taylor from  Highbullen Hotel (pictured with host Judi Spiers and guest speaker Peter Gorton) pick up one of two awards on the night. Picture: Nick Williams

Gold, silver and bronze at glittering evening for local hotels, restaurants and attractions.

Read more
An artist's impression of how the food and retail area at Anchorwood Bank will look

Developers have submitted a planning application for the food and retail area of the Anchorwood Bank development.

Read more
Crowds will gather for the Bideford light switch on this Sunday

Don’t miss the big switch on this Sunday on the quay

Read more
15 minutes ago

Efforts are underway to save the memories of local veterans before they are lost forever.

Read more

Open evening at Appledore Fire Station on Thursday, December 3.

Read more
Torridge MP Geoffrey Cox is joined by pupils from Holsworthy Community College and Shebbear College as he presents the first stage of his Parliamentary Petition on rural roads to 10 Downing Sreet. Picture: Submitted

Government urged to do more to improve the condition of rural roads

Read more
Yesterday, 09:00
Volunteers at Grosvenor Church with just some of the Christmas shoeboxes

Thousands donate boxes for needy children around the world

Read more
Saturday, November 28, 2015
Go North Devon staff and volunteers collecting for the SOS Appeal. Picture: Tony Freeman

Appeal to North Devon companies to help preserve ring and ride plus shopmobility services

Read more
Saturday, November 28, 2015
Was this artwork created by a celebrity? Place your bid in the Children's Hospice SW charity online auction

Children’s Hospice South West hosts secret online charity auction

Read more
Friday, November 27, 2015
Libby Ross of Devon and Severn IFCA tags a blonde ray in Bideford Bay. Picture: Steph Davies

Fishermen join tagging scheme to prove ray stocks are abundant off the North Devon coast

Read more

Christmas in North Devon

Christmas in North Devon

Christmas Magazine

Click here for your ultimate guide to
Christmas in North Devon

Local Weather



max temp: 12°C

min temp: 11°C

Most Read News

Great British Life

Great British Life

Useful Links

Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Subscribe to the paper
North Devon Football League
Order Photos
Family notices
Google Plus Page
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Read Online

Read the North Devon Gazette e-edition E-edition

Search for a job in Devon

Local business directory

North Devon's trusted business finder

Find planning applications