Manchester Business Improvement District is supporting the BID industry and city colleagues, in urging government to to provide a #BusinessBooster and urgent assurances that financial support will be provided to retail and hospitality sectors in the current economic climate.

Open Letter to Government (edit)

Rt. Hon Boris Johnson MP
Prime Minister

Rt. Hon Rishi Sunak MP
Chancellor of the Exchequer

20th December 2021

Dear Prime Minister,

RE: Give a #BusinessBooster to save our high streets, towns and city centres from extinction

We are writing to you on behalf of over 100 destinations across the UK and 100,000 retail, hospitality and leisure businesses to urge Government to provide a #BusinessBooster and urgent assurances that financial support will be provided to these sectors.

It is imperative that the Government acts quickly by offering financial assistance and other necessary interventions to those experiencing disruption following rising cases of the Omicron variant and the impact of “Plan B” measures. With consumer confidence expected to drop below its current level of -15 amid growing speculation of an impending lockdown, the time for action is now.

There is clearly growing concern of a lockdown following the announcement of Plan B restrictions on 8th December 2021 which must be reviewed on 29th December 2021, two days prior to New Year’s Eve.

Businesses need certainty with many holding on to the glimmer of hope that New Year may bring.

The critical Christmas trading period is in tatters leaving businesses, particularly those within the hospitality, retail and leisure sector teetering on the brink of financial ruin and set to lose £4bn in sales.

While we appreciate risks to health due to the Omicron variant, we cannot and should not forget the businesses who have had all but been shut down and want to continue trading securely.

Hospitality is the UK’s third largest sector, employing 3.2million people [10% of the UK workforce] and produces £130 billion of economic activity. These sectors are vital to our economic recovery and the current measures in place aren’t working.

In addition, we are seriously concerned that the freelance and selfemployed community which upends the hospitality, retail and leisure sectors have so far during the pandemic been largely overlooked. We therefore propose the introduction of a Discretionary Grant Fund of up to £7,500 per claim that will ensure this community is appropriately supported.

We represent one of the largest networks of businesses across the United Kingdom. Business improvement Districts alongside our partners including UKHospitality, British Beer and Pub Association and Night Time Industries Association are clear that action must come forward now to prevent a catastrophic chain reaction to the future of our economy.

We would urge you, your Government, MPs from all sides of the aisle to consider carefully the impact and potential loss to the economy if no action is taken to prevent the crisis we now all face economically.

We understand that business groups are being invited to share insights to Government, and proposed this is extended to the Business Improvement District industry. This will provide you with the opportunity to learn of the challenges town and city centres are currently facing, and work collaboratively together on suitable solutions during this challenging time.

In doing so, we hope this will provide greater clarity and the need to consider how the Government might support these sectors further.

We appreciate the pressures facing Government economically but failing to act not only see thousands of businesses go to the wall but the real prospect that billions of previously allocated Government funds going to waste simply because we did not act to save our economy.

I look forward to hearing from you in due course.

Yours sincerely, 

Matthew Sims
Chief Executive
Croydon BID and Co-Founder of #RaiseTheBar and #BusinessBooster

Christopher Turner
CEO, British BIDs

Ojay MacDonald
CEO, ATCM

Amy Lame
Night Czar, Greater London Authority

Michael Kill
CEO, Night Time Industries Association

Emma McClarkin
CEO, British Beer & Pub Association

Alongside Business Improvement Districts and Town Centre Management partners:

Manchester BID
Croydon BID
New West End Company
Sheffield BID
Norwich BID
Liverpool BID
GO! Southampton BID
Destination Bristol
Bristol City Centre BID
Bournemouth Coastal BID
Love Hastings
Chester BID
Manor Royal BID
Winchester BID
Sunderland BID
Salisbury BID
Bath BID
We Are Waterloo BID
Angel BID
Preston BID
Edmonton Green Limited
Colmore BID
Positively Putney BID
Hull BID
Uxbridge BID
Jewellery Quarter BID
My Milton Keynes BID
Bilston BID
Purley BID
New Addington BID
Reading Central BID
Reading Abbey Quarter BID
Kippa BID
Your Eastbourne BID
Yorkshire Coast BID
Stoke on Trent City Centre BID
Brixton BID
Stockton BID
Camden Town Unlimited
Bromley BID
Orpington 1st
Booksellers Association of UK and Ireland
Kingston First
Marble Arch London BID
Paddington Now BID
Bognor Regis BID
Love Hoddesdon BID
Southport BID
Canterbury BID
Worcester BID
North Notts BID

Read the Full Letter

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