In a nutshell, we’re a partnership between businesses and organisations based in the centre of Penrith, working together with Westmorland and Furness Council, Penrith Town Council and other partners to improve trading conditions in the town.
A Business Improvement District (BID) is a defined area, whose businesses pay an additional amount (or levy) on top of their business rates. This money is used to fund projects within the district’s boundaries. BIDs can also draw on other public and private funding streams.
There are more than a hundred BIDs in the UK, and Penrith BID was first established in April 2013, after a vote amongst businesses in the BID zone, and again following a further vote in 2017. Businesses voted again in June 2023 and gave a resounding thumbs-up to having a business improvement district for another five years up to 31st July 2028, after which there’ll be the opportunity to vote again.
Penrith BID includes and is funded by the businesses in the defined zone which have a rateable value of more than £4,000. That means local traders and businesses are investing in improving the town, for everyone’s benefit, for themselves, their staff and their customers.
The BID’s work is guided by an enthusiastic board of local business people and charity representatives as well as Westmorland and Furness Council and Penrith Town Council representatives.
For the Penrith BID there are four key objectives, all of which aim to improve business and trade in the town centre:
To PROMOTE Penrith as a shopping destination and service centre offering a distinctive choice of shops, festivals & events. Making Penrith the location of choice for visitors exploring Cumbria.
To provide or support a range of EVENTS that create a reason for people to visit Penrith, ensuring the town is a destination of choice.
To ENHANCE Penrith's visual appeal by working with our partners to ensure Penrith is clean, accessible and visually appealing.
To build an effective PARTNERSHIP between the town's businesses, organisations and local authorities for the benefit of Penrith town centre.
Our vision is to position Penrith as a destination of choice for visitors to base themselves, to explore the Eden Valley, the Lake District World Heritage Park and The Pennines AONB; a vibrant Penrith that is a great place to shop, live, work and visit; working in partnership with local businesses and organisations to promote and enhance our unique town.