Voted for, supported by and working with local businesses, BIDs are not-for-profit company governed by local volunteers from the surrounding business community with the sole purpose of improving their local area as a place to work, visit and live.
Revenue is generated through all eligible businesses within our defined geographical BID area via a mandatory annual BID levy. Businesses that pay this BID levy are therefore known as WeAreWaterloo BID members.
These localised investments can vary widely with BID’s funding anything from enhancing the area’s public realm through urban greening to hosting networking events to help connect the business community. Find out more on the government website or see what services we are currently providing in this year’s BID Services Leaflet.
Though BIDs are regulated by government legislation and work closely with local councils (especially on levy collection and reballoting), they are independent apolitical organisations working solely on behalf of local businesses and the wider community. They are governed by a Board of Directors made up of primarily local business leaders from a variety of industries.
Every 5 years businesses are asked to vote on whether they want the BID to continue during a reballot. This process is regulated and overseen by the local council who work to ensure appropriate procedures are followed and transparency is maintained. Board appointments are made during the BID’s Annual General Meetings (AGM) in which BID members are invited to have their say on new appointments and view the BID’s annual accounts. WeAreWaterloo was established in 2006 following a vote by local businesses. In fact, BIDs are commonplace in most UK towns, and in cities across Europe and the United States. The majority of UK city centres now have BIDs – including Liverpool, Birmingham, Leeds, Newcastle, Sheffield and Bristol, as well as many here in London.
To find out more about Business Improvement Districts via the government website here.