Croydon BID has played a significant role in representing businesses across the country during the pandemic, succeeding in changing Government policy and unlocking over £1bn in fianncial support for businesses.
Our national campaign Raise the Bar was created by Croydon BID to directly lobby the Government to listen to the needs of business above the £51,000 rateable value threshold.
The ask was simple: To expand the rateable value threshold for all retail, hospitality and leisure businesses from £51,000 to any business with a rateable value up to and including £150,000, allowing 54,638 businesses the opportunity to access a £25,000 grant. Overall, the cost to central Government of Raise The Bar was calculated at £1.365bn.
To support the campaign, we recruited 16 national trade bodies and leading figures to formally back the campaign. They included UKHospitality, British Beer and Pub Association, BID Foundation, British BIDs, Association of Town & City Management, Greater London Authority, London Chamber of Commerce, London Councils, Night Time Industries Association, Music Venues Trust, British Pub Confederation, Association of Convenience Stores, National Hair & Beauty Federation, London Councils and our original partners, the London Borough of Croydon.
The campaign quickly received political support from all sides of the divide. The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, publically backed the Raise The Bar campaign integrating the ask into London’s lobbying to central Government.
In total, 86 Conservative MPs wrote an open letter to the Prime Minister Boris Johnson MP and Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak MP requesting that businesses with a rateable value of over £51k receive a financial grant. Our team led discussions with Labour front bench MPs including Lucy Powell MP, Shadow Minister for Business & Consumers. Furthermore, Shadow Secretary of State for Business Ed Miliband MP raised the issue at the dispatch box.
Initially, our strategy was to gain traction for the campaign regionally, working with and supported by our partners, in particular business improvement districts (BIDs) across England and Wales. The campaign generated 273 national, regional and local and trade press media articles reaching 9.9 million, generating £1.4m PR equivalent value and £470k advertising equivalent value.
Raise The Bar - making a difference
Local authorities from across England and Wales demonstrated their agreement with the ethos of the Raise The Bar campaign by introducing a second phase to the rollout of the Discretionary Fund. As a result, many of the 54,638 businesses represented by the campaign, originally ineligible, received access to a financial grant.
In Croydon, as a result of the Raise The Bar campaign, the local authority updated their policy to allow businesses with a rateable value of £51,000 or more to receive grants of £10,000 and £25,000. In total, under the second phase of the Discretionary fund in Croydon, XXXX businesses were supported with £XXXm in grant allocation.
Representing you every step of the way
Right from the outset, Croydon BID has been representing your needs on a variety of platforms locally and across London, lobbying for greater support.
Strategic Co-Ordination Group for London Business Taskforce
We are a key member of the Strategic Co-ordination Group (SCG) for London Business taskforce and have, since its inception, attended over 24 hours of meetings representing the views of London businesses with partners including London Chamber of Commerce, CBI, Federation of Small Business, London First, Greater London Authority, City of London, London & Partners, Tech UK, Trade Union Congress, London Councils and UKHospitality. We have provided valuable insights feeding into the main SCG board and the Mayor of London, influencing future policy.
Positively representing your views locally
We have attended over 50 hours of meetings designed to move the town centre forward through the Town Centre Activation and Enforcement Group and the Croydon Covid-19 Business Taskforce. Working with partners and stakeholders from across the borough, we have represented the needs of business on the Local Strategic Partnership Board, attending over 25 hours of meetings.
As we move forward, Croydon BID plays a pivotal role as an active member of the Sustainable Economic Renewal Board. The purpose of the board is to look forward, developing a sustainable economic recovery and renewal plan for Croydon.