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Join leaders of Business Improvement Districts in the UK, as we explore the role of BIDs in the recovery and growth our towns and cities.

With over 300 BIDs and £100m+ of revenue raised for local placemaking and management, the BID sector has again proven its vital role in coordinating, innovating and supporting local centres. Whether it's reanimating and reimagining spaces after lockdowns; driving forward sustainability programmes with business support and training; local strategies from place branding to law and order and inbound travel; or engaging with citizens and many local stakeholders and place managers.

Members of The BID Foundation, representing Business Improvement Districts from around the UK, will convene in Manchester on April 28th. Join us to hear inspirational and innovative speakers, and to take part in discussion with BIDs, government, and stakeholders on the future evolution of the sector.

Register now

Speakers and event highlights
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Rebecca Denham

Head of Urban Policy, Dept for Levelling Up, Housing & Communities

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Phil Prentice

Chief Executive, Scotlands' Towns Partnerships


Chris Hurst

High Streets & Business Improvement District Manager, Birmingham City Council

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Natalie Raben

Chief Executive, We Are Waterloo

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Dianne Wainwright

Head of Business Engagement, Leeds BID

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Sam McCarthy

Chief Executive, Worcester BID

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Julie Grail

Founder, The BIDs Business

Vaughan Allen

Chief Executive, Manchester BID

Rachel Nicholson

Corporate Responsibility Manager, Better Bankside

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Prof. Cathy Parker

Chair, Institute of Place Management

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Jett Glozier

Head of UK, Sound Diplomacy

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Andrew Goodacre

Chief Exec, BIRA

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Bill Addy

Chief Exec, Liverpool BID Company and Chair, TBF

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Joe Barratt

Co-Founder, The Teenage Market

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World-Class Venue

Join us at the EQUIS-accredited Manchester Met Business School, in the heart of the city.

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Network with BIDs & policy makers

Meet with peers at a non-commercial event focused on BIDs and their impact.


10am - 4pm, 28th April 2022
Manchester Metropolitan University Business School (view map)

All confirmed sessions - more to be announced early April

Registration, coffee and networking

Join us in the £75m Manchester Met Business School - UK 'Building of the Year' on its opening in 2012 - and convene with leading BIDs and sector stakeholders from around the UK. We'll welcome you to the University, home of IPM and The BID Foundation, where the Grow Cafe and central atrium will be dedicated to hosting our Members for the day.

10.00 - 12.00
Plenary session 1

  • Welcome from the Chairs - Prof. Cathy Parker and Bill Addy

For the first time in over two years, we'll gather together in-person to set the agenda for the BID sector. Bill and Cathy will kick us off, reflecing on progress and the aims of the day.

  • Developing a Placemaking Strategy - Natalie Raben, WeAreWaterloo

WeAreWaterloo are currently developing a Placemaking strategy for the area, one of the busiest in London, and encouraging residents and workers to help shape the vision. Selected to help kick off Berlin's Creative Bureaucracy Festival, it incorporates bold public realm plans, big projects like the Low Line, destination marketing, and addresses pressures on retail. Hear from Chief Exec and IPM graduate, Natalie Raben, and ask questions about the team's work.

  • 'The Engine Room': Supporting Business - Dianne Wainwright, Leeds BID

Leeds BID will showcase their UK-leading business support hub - 'The Engine Room' - which provides a physical space, guidance and resources to the businesses of Leeds. Kicked off during the COVID-19 pandemic, The Engine Room is now a place to consult and collaborate, ensuring that the BID understands the needs of businesses, including training, digital skills, space hire, and specific support for grant and finance applications. Join Dianne Wainwright, Head of Business Engagement, to find out more.

  •  Pioneering levy collection for BIDs - Sam McCarthy and Julie Grail, Worcester BID

In a real landmark for the sector, Worcester BID became the first BID to collect its own levy this year, having put in place an agency agreement with the City Council. In addition to providing insight into the negotiations and processes involved, BID Chief Exec Sam McCarthy and advisor, Julie Grail, will discuss the benefits and pitfalls for BIDs in this approach and what it could mean for the sector if adopted further. Join us to discuss this key development for BID governance.

  • Corporate responsibility strategy - Rachel Nicholson, Better Bankside

Better Bankside were one of the first BIDs to appoint a corporate responsibility manager. Rachel Nicholson joins us to discuss how the BID's CSR strategy influences a range of work and specific initiatives, from 'Change for Bankside' and helping people out of homelessness' to engagement with levy payers and local organisations to foster an active neighbourhood.

12.00 - 13.15
Lunch and networking

Join us for a business lunch at the Grow Cafe in the main atrium, where there will be plenty of time to meet with other BID leaders and speakers from the Summit programme.

13.15 - 14.20
Plenary session 2

  • BIDs, devolution and local partnerships -  DLUHC, Phil Prentice (STP) and Chris Hurst (Birmingham City Council), inc. BID contributions

Since the BID model came into law in the UK in 2003, the sector has gone from strength to strength. Now, with a greater focus on regeneration in British politics than ever before, BIDs provide a unique resource and opportunity, to lead local strategies and deliver the placemaking activity crucial to the vitality of towns and cities.

So, what next?...

How could BIDs be brought further into the centre of place management and regeneration, through partnerships, funding, or even new legislation. We'll hear from BIDs delivering this strategic value now, and be joined by a panel well placed to debate the future: Senior policy representatives from the Department for Levelling Up; Phil Prentice from Scotland's Towns Partnership; and Chris Hurst, High Streets and BID Manager at Birmingham City Council.

  • Supporting the future of retail - Andrew Goodacre, BIRA

Business costs and consumer confidence are putting pressure on high street retail after a resurgence of senitment to shop local and support independents. As the government forms a consultation over online sales tax and business rates, what is the future role of retail, and indies in partcular? We'll be hearing from the Chief Executive of BIRA and discussing the trends BIDs should be aware of in 2022/23.

14.20 - 14.45
Coffee and networking


14.45 - 15.45
Closing plenary

  • BIDs and cultural strategies - Jett Glozier, Sound Diplomacy inc. BID contributions

Jett Glozier is Head of UK at Sound Diplomacy, an organisation responsible for delivering cultural strategies for clients from Missouri to City Hall, London. As we begin to refocus even more on the need for experiential cities and cultivating more reasons to visit, Jett will discuss best practice in cultural strategies with contributions from BIDs and highlighting those that have got it right.

  • BIDs and diversity - Joe Barratt

Joe Barratt has spent 12 months investigating gender diversity in the BID sector, amongst BID boards and executives. As founder of the Teenage Market and a Board Member at the High Streets Task Force, Joe will present his research and start a discussion on what diversity means in the sector and how it could and should be achieved across the UK.

  • Closing keynote and summary of the day


16.00 onwards
Social event and evening meal in Manchester

Join us at the University's pub, The Salutation, for refreshments after the day and then we'll head on to Hatch, a boxpark type venue on Oxford Road, for a meal and to continue the celebration of BIDs and their work.


Be part of The BID Summit 2022


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