Ipswich Central gets another five years to manage the town centre

Ipswich Central chairman Terry Baxter.

Ipswich Central chairman Terry Baxter. - Credit: Archant

Ipswich Central has been given another five years to promote and support businesses in the heart of the town.

The Business Investment District (BID) company won an overwhelming 95% support to carry on among businesses who took part in the statutory ballot in the town centre.

That means it will now continued to promote the town, organise the town rangers, and push ahead with proposals to continue to implement the Ipswich Vision over the next five years.

It is also going to boost efforts to promote Ipswich as a destination for day visitors and those who are looking for holidays and short breaks in the area.

Businesses pay just over 1% of their rateable value to Ipswich Central to carry out its work – and it needs to get their support to carry on every five years.

Of the businesses in the town centre 64% took part in the ballot – the national average in elections for BID companies is 52%.”

Ipswich Central chairman Terry Baxter said: “This is a strong demonstration of the support our BID continues to enjoy from its members.

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“To receive 95% in support by number at our second renewal and a turnout of over 60% demonstrates that the Ipswich BID remains extremely relevant to the needs and expectations of our levy payers.”

The result was welcomed by borough leader David Ellesmere: “This is a vote of confidence in Ipswich Central and the BID team.

“It means they will continue to work to make the town safer – encouraging more people to come to Ipswich with services like the rangers and taxi marshals.”

The marshals operate in the evenings – and have improved security for those enjoying the night-time economy.

John Dugmore, chief executive of the Suffolk Chamber of Commerce also welcomed the news. He said: “Ipswich Central, like all Business Improvement Districts, has had an important role in improving the town centre ‘offer’ in the face of competition from both out of town and digital competition.

“As a board member of Ipswich Central, we are very pleased that the team has been given another five year term and look forward to working with them on further initiatives to make Ipswich town an even better place for shoppers and retailers alike.”