BRADFORD businesses are being urged to share their views on proposals to create a Business Improvement District in the city.

The plans would see a new levy on business rates being pooled to pay for various trade-boosting ideas.

The idea could be worth £2.5m over five years, but needs to win a local referendum before it can begin.

Consultants Heartflood have been commissioned to carry out an independent feasibility study to establish whether or not a BID would be successful in Bradford.

There are currently 270 across the UK, with the first created in Canada and the USA in the 1960s.

A questionnaire has now gone live as a way for businesses in the city centre to share their views on the proposals.

Chris Gregory, project manager for the feasibility study, said around 40 responses had been submitted so far, but the aim was to get around 150.

Speaking about the general feeling towards the BID, Mr Gregory said: “The feeling at this stage, as far as we are concerned, is really positive.

“A number of organisations are already backing the BID – we are really encouraged there is a lot of interest and that’s great.”

Ian Ward, general manager of The Broadway and chairman of the BID development group, added: “The more views we get, the better.

“The more views we get, it helps to shape, to a certain extent, what the BID should be doing.”

If an early feasibility study suggests the BID idea is proving popular in Bradford, a vote could be held in autumn 2018.

To set up a BID, organisers must win a referendum among businesses in the area where the levy would be charged.

Those ‘yes’ votes must also correspond to more than 50 per cent of the total rateable value of all votes


A BID lasts for up to five years and to continue it after that time, organisers have to hold another ballot.

An open meeting to hear more about the BID has been organised for Bradford city centre businesses next month.

The meeting will be held at The Midland Hotel, from 5.30pm on Tuesday, September 12.

To complete the survey, visit