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Sharon Appleby, head of business operations at Sunderland BID.
Rebecca Wayman

Sunderland BID to reveal five-year business plan to 'strengthen' city's economy

Plans for the next five years of Sunderland Business Improvement District (BID) will be unveiled this Thursday (September 20) at the launch of its new business plan.

Businesses across the city will vote on the future of the BID in November, with a view to it returning for a further five years.

The plan has been formulated after consultation with businesses about their priorities and areas of concern, along with in-depth research - which has resulted in “a clear indication” of the direction the BID will take going forward.

Over the past five years, the BID has reportedly helped boost the city centre economy by £3m, along with making an economic impact of a further £2m through initiatives like Restaurant Week, Christmas and the Fanzones.

Sharon Appleby, head of business operations at Sunderland BID, stated: “The first five years has been a challenging but successful time and we believe the BID has delivered a whole range of exciting initiatives which have had a positive impact on the city.

“But this work has only just started, which is why it is really important that we get a yes vote going forward.”

The BID has run Christmas events in the city, including the ice rink and has also played a major role in cracking down on crime and anti-social behaviour.

It now intends to build on its foundations and launch a whole range of new initiatives in the city centre.

The business plan will be unveiled at an invitation-only event in a store at High Street West, which will bring the new priorities to life.

“If the BID isn’t successful in getting re-elected for a second term, there will be nothing to replace the gap that will be left.

“That means all the initiatives that we currently offer - and those which will be revealed in the business plan - simply won’t happen, which will be bad news for the city.

“We hope people will come and hear what we have to say and be as excited about what we can achieve going forward as we are, by all working together.”

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