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RTW Together
BID Term 2 Renewal

Ballot 2024

Royal Tunbridge Wells Together Business Improvement District was set up in 2019 to support the businesses of Royal Tunbridge Wells. Over the last 5 years we have strived to accomplish that goal during what can be described as challenging circumstances for the town.

 

We believe we have accomplished much but that there is much still that can be accomplished and we therefore wish to continue our efforts for a further 5 years supporting the RTW business community and continuing to offer them cost-effective support and value for money.

BID Members

The 640+ BID Members are made up of businesses within the BID area (outlined in the map adjacent) which are responsible for a property registered for business rates that have a rating of over £15k.

Please note the only change to the map from the first term, is a small modifcation on the southern edge to remove what was previously a pie factory as the property is in the process of being converted to residential.

Every prospective BID member will be eligible to one vote per property/hereditament. BID members would contribute an annual levy based on the rateable value of their premises.

BID Members are welcome to contact the BID team to check what their cost would be.

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Voting

We are seeking to renew the Business Improvement District (BID) for the town centre of RTW for a second five-year term (1st April 2024 – 31st March 2029) and have requested Tunbridge Wells Borough Council (TWBC) to administer the ballot, in accordance with the BID (England) Regulations 2004. The BID ballot will be successful if the following two criteria are met:

1. More than 50% of businesses that vote, vote YES

2. Those voting in favour must represent the majority of rateable value of those voting

If the ballot is successful, RTW Together BID will start a second five-year term commencing 1st April 2024.

 

In the event the ballot is unsuccessful, the BID will cease to exist on 31st March 2024 and all RTW Together operations will finish shortly after.

You should have received your copy of the business plan and official ballot notification by now. You should receive ballot paper 1st February or shortly after. This ballot paper will have a simple Yes / No option which you can return either by post (using the self-addressed envelope) or by dropping your return off (Monday – Friday between 9am – 5pm) at Tunbridge Wells Borough Council Reception, Town Hall, Civic Way, Royal Tunbridge Wells TN1 1RS where there will be a sealed ballot box .

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Ballot Timeline

  • October / November 23 - BID Member Consultation 

  • December 23 - New Business Plan Drafted

  • January 23 - Business Plan delivered to BID Members

  • 18th January - BID Members receive formal notification of ballot from Civica (independent election body)

  • 1st February - BID Members receive by post their ballot slips (with accompanying ballot statement)

  • February 24 - Voting takes place

  • 29th February - Final deadline for voting submission

  • 1st March - Announcement of result (on social media, by newsletter and on this website)

  • 1st April - RTW Together BID Term 2 begins (if the ballot is a majority yes vote)

Business Plan and Consultation

During the Autumn of 2023, RTW Together invited its BID Members to consult on a second business plan. We offered BID Members the opportunity to attend a presentation and workshop at the Hotel du Vin on the 18th October, invited BID Members to come into see the BID team either by appointment or by a number of dedicated drop off sessions and via an electronic survey. 

 

Following reviewing the feedback from the dedicated consultation sessions as well as general feedback received from BID Members throughout the year, a plan was drafted in consultation with the board via dedicated committee sessions to review the relevant areas. The plan that has been drafted aims to support businesses as desired by the local community in ways where a BID can make real positive impact and has outlined this through 3 core avenues -

  • supporting your business directly to help you operate as effectively as possible

  • promoting your business and you town as a destination to visit and enjoy

  • enhancing our town and local environment of your business

If you haven't already RTW Together encourages you to read and/or download the plan. If you haven't received for whatever reason and/or would like another hard copy of the plan please do not hesitate to request one below.

Questions

If you have any questions about the Business Plan or voting process, please do not hesitate to contact the BID team via biddirector@rtwtogether.com or the local authority who oversees the ballot via hilary.smith@tunbridgewells.gov.uk 

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