(30 Jan 2015) - Stirling City Centre BID Full Business Plan launched

Reactions from local business owners to the Stirling BID plans

Earlier this month, over 500 businesses located in Stirling City Centre received their copy of the full business plan for the proposed Stirling City Centre Business Improvement District, including all the national operators in Stirling. The full business plan can be viewed below.

The business plan has been put together by a team of volunteers, made up of members of the local business community, including invaluable input from the Thistles Shopping Centre, who want to work with the local businesses outside the shopping centre, for the benefit of the whole of Stirling City Centre.

The reaction from local business owners has been mixed. Almost half the traders in Upper Craigs signed a petition and approached the Stirling Observer to voice their concerns and air their views, which were published in the Wednesday 21/01/15 edition. "Critics hit out over BID plan" (page 7). A response from the Stirling BID steering group was also covered in <the article here>.

An open meeting was called and arranged for lunchtime of Wednesday the following week, in the Kilted Kangaroo in Upper Craigs.

The meeting corresponded with the Wednesday 28/01/15 Observer edition, by which time the story was front page news with the attention grabbing headline "60 traders Join Business Revolt", <front page article here> and even made it into Chris Kane's column, "I think the BID have some work to do when almost 50 per cent of businesses in a key street are not in favour" said Chris.

Other businesses took to twitter to express their support of the Stirling BID, as can be seen below.


Photograph to the left of Mr. Pemberton, based in Friar's Street, was taken during the delivery of the business plan summary just before Christmas.

Today Friday 30/01/15, a follow up article was published in the Daily Record about Stirling as a feature on their "Insider Regional Report", <full article here>

The opening line was "Writing for Scottish Business Insider, Victoria Masterson finds Stirling has diverse economy and confidence in its future".

Although the Stirling BID received a mention in the context of the Council supporting the Business Improvement Districts for Stirling and Dunblane, the article focussed on the larger businesses outwith the city centre, including the former Macfarlane Gray accountancy firm, who were taken over by French Duncan. The reason for highlighting this article, is mainly due to Greg Callan's comments about Stirling where he says.

"Stirling has a fine tradition of family businesses, which have grown over the decades from one-man bands into large local employers, and has also now become home to many well-recognised national names."

Many of these family business are based in Stirling City Centre and having survived the recent hard times, are now looking to the future. The Stirling BID steering group will continue to maintain a dialogue with many of these 3rd generation family businesses, up to the close of the ballot period, in order to explain the benefits that a BID can bring.

It is hoped that by ongoing communication with local businesses, that all their concerns will be listened to and acted upon.

Tony I'Anson, from Stirling Internet Ltd who own Stirling.co.uk, has been an independent observer during the Stirling BID planning process over the last 12 months and actively supporting the BID for Stirling City Centre.

Next Week (4th Feb 2015) Stirling.co.uk will review the passionate Stirling BID meeting.

Attended by:-
The Stirling BID steering group;
Traders from Upper Craigs and other streets;
Tony Wilkes, Thistles shopping centre manager;
Reporter from the Stirling Observer;
Tony I'Anson from Stirling.co.uk

There were no representatives from Stirling Council at the meeting. It was considered this initiative has been championed by businesses for businesses, with the Council offering a supportive role and some funding to the Stirling BID process.