More than 30 people attend Westside BID’s annual general meeting

The Garden Room at the Novotel on Broad Street saw more than 30 people attending Westside BID’s annual general meeting (AGM) on Thursday 13 June.

Nasim Akhtar opened the meeting.

Nasim Akhtar, operations manager at Westside BID, opened the AGM and welcomed everyone attending. Gerald Manton, the chairman of the BID, then volunteered to chair the meeting and introduced a wide range of speakers.

Gerald Manton chaired the AGM.

Luisa Huggins, communications manager at the BID, gave those attending a summary of all the publicity that had been achieved for the area and members in recent years, highlighting Westside’s increased media presence.

Dozens of guests watched Luisa Huggins’ presentation at the AGM.

Elaine Weir, the BID’s business liaison manager, gave an update on how she engages with members, while guest speaker Nick Duffy of Live TV told the audience about the BID’s new studio facilities.

Elaine Weir speaking at the AGM.

Chief Inspector Gary Everitt, the new leader of city centre policing, introduced himself to business leaders, and explained how recent activity had led to a 10 per cent crime reduction.

Chief Inspector Gary Everitt talks at the AGM.

Building on this theme, senior street warden Peter Willis told the meeting how his team was doubling its daytime patrols and increasing night-time patrols by 50 per cent. His colleague Nicola Whitehurst, the BID’s new vulnerability manager, explained how her partnership with the police had recently led to the arrests of seven suspected drug dealers. You can find out more about that story here.

Senior warden Peter Willis and vulnerability manager Nicole Whitehurst speak at the AGM.

Mike Olley, general manager at the BID, gave members various details about the new ballot of businesses planned for later this year to seek approval to continue with the BID’s operations from 2025 to 2030.

Mr Olley added that the BID’s plans for its next term included slightly extending its boundaries to include Nelson Street at the back of the ICC and Five Ways railway station.

Mike Olley presents the BID’s future plans at the AGM.

He also told the meeting about a proposed new ‘Energy BID’ that would collect power from solar panels on the area’s tall buildings and store it in batteries based in an unused railway tunnel, providing cheaper electricity to local businesses.

Many of those attending stayed afterwards to chat to BID staff and enjoy some light refreshments and networking.

Luisa Huggins networks with a guest at the AGM.

Speaking after the meeting, Mr Olley said: “We were very pleased to welcome dozens of people attending the meeting who were keen to listen to what we’d done in recent years, and what we are planning for the future.”

Mike Olley (right) chats with BID director Sir Albert Bore.

Westside BID has a draft prospectus which details its past activities and plans for the future, and this is available for any businesses to read. The BID has also invited feedback, as it is keen to reflect what businesses themselves want in its plans.

Guests networking with BID staff after the AGM.

For more information and to ask about the draft prospectus, you can email luisa.huggins@westsidebid.co.uk.

Pictures: Jas Sansi.

ENDS

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