EGM 2014In April this year, Newquay Business Improvement District (BID) will enter its final year of its initial five year delivery programme. Over the past few years, The BID has established itself as an integral catalyst, a constant business and community support provider, a key driver for new businesses in town and a vital body providing ongoing communications and marketing campaigning for Newquay as well as driving new initiatives and opportunities.

When Newquay BID received the ‘yes’ vote in 2011, Newquay was all over the regional and national headlines for the wrong reasons and was perceived primarily as a stag and hen destination rather than a family holiday spot. Around the same time, the recession was hitting hard and a number of Newquay businesses found that their key customers had stopped booking and retailers, activity providers and hospitality establishments were facing deep challenges.

The BID brought a number of key businesses from all sectors around the table who all agreed that the resort was going through both a self-confidence and an identity crisis.  The BID team then led a collective, consultative process to create a new and all-encompassing brand and image that would ensure the resort’s appeal was reinstated and that the town and its marketing was all put back on track.

Over the last four years, an ongoing succession of PR, marketing and advertising campaigns have driven this new image and key messages across the country and the BID has invested significantly in, and supported, a raft of vital Newquay events and opportunities.  A further £35,000 of funding has been drawn down as a result of the BID’s efforts, key investment has gone into marketing, events and street environment projects for the town.

Over those four years, several new and exciting independent businesses have been set-up, both in the high street and throughout the town as key chefs and entrepreneurs and investors from across the country, and abroad have begun to see Newquay as a unique lifestyle destination.   Blue chip chains such as Prezzo, Frankie & Benny’s and Wetherspoons have all significantly invested in key sites in the town and a host of housing developments are now underway as major hotels and hospitality establishments undergo refurbishments and re-development to keep in step with the evolution and the high standards that are being set by key businesses.

Eve Wooldridge, Newquay BID Manager says: “I was appointed as BID Manager for Newquay in June 2011, a time that was realistically, not Newquay’s most flattering moment.  Since then, the board members and the BID staff team members have all worked extremely hard in challenging economic conditions to fulfill the objectives in the business plan. Newquay has undergone a significant change to proactively and positively deal with the issues that we were facing as a business community and we are proud that we have been at the forefront of that change, working with a plethora of brilliant businesses to achieve this major transition.”

Eve continues, “It hasn’t been easy, and as people will be aware, Cornwall Council is continually withdrawing funding and the BID along with the town council and other key players have to think very carefully about how we push Newquay forward but without using businesses money to replace services that were once provided by the county council. We are continually achieving the key milestones set in the agreed business plan, as well as finding and creating other opportunities and options for the town.”

Eve further says: “However, we still have so much we can do. The business environment is constantly changing, lots of other resorts and destinations are driving forward with their own BIDs and their marketing campaigns and we still hear lots of our members having great concepts that could push Newquay forward even further. Newquay needs to keep at it to meet its potential. Another five year term will enable us to refresh our business plan, engaging with new and existing businesses and making sure that we deliver a further, and more extensive programme of ongoing investment and activity in Newquay that builds on everything that we have achieved in the last few years and allows the town, and its businesses to continue on this proactive route towards new markets and new success.”

The BID board, made up of 12 representatives from a range of Newquay businesses, is therefore keen for Eve and her team to develop another five year visionary strategy that will commence in April 2016-2021 when the current five year term comes to an end.

To ensure that this strategy, and its implementation objectives and plans, are absolutely aligned with what local businesses need,  those businesses are urged to come forward with new ideas for the next five year term, ideas that will encourage visitors regionally and nationally as well as ongoing sustained business from the local community.  The BID will be holding workshops across the town centre and urges those that are ready and willing to get involved to come along and help drive the future plans for Newquay. The meetings will be informal opportunities for members of the public to have their say, and their input, on how the BID business plan evolves going forward.

Chairman of the Newquay BID, Rachel Craze of Newquay Fruit Sales, says, “As a business in Newquay these workshops are a fantastic opportunity for our colleagues to make it clear what they need to see happening and what they feel the BID should be doing over the next five years.  Since the BID was created, we have been through some critical challenges, and we have dealt with a number of those and we are now seeing a fantastic new wave of investment in the town, however as with anything, vital investment in this evolution must continue.   Now is a great time for businesses and business leaders to get involved. It would be great to see some new faces and drive fresh thinking and input into our overall strategy, ensuring that the BID is continually delivering bespoke programmes and initiatives that absolutely deliver what our local businesses need and want for the future of our resort.”

8 meetings are being held in Newquay at the following locations and times:

Date Time Duration location Address
23/03/2015 9am 1.5 hrs Fistral Beach Hotel Esplanade Road
23/03/2015 11am 1.5 hrs Oceans Lodge Tower Road
23/03/2015 2pm 1.5 hrs Heron Tennis Centre Trenance Leisure Park
23/03/2015 4pm 1.5 hrs Great Western Steam Bar Cliff Road
24/03/2015 2.30pm 1.5 hrs The Cribbar Gover Lane
24/03/2015 4pm 1.5 hrs Hotel Victoria East Street
26/03/2015 11am 1.5 hrs Central Inn Central Square
27/03/2015 10.30am 1.5hrs Sandy Lodge Hilgrove Road

Just a few of the key delivery highlights of Newquay BID within the last four years have included:

Significantly enhancing events and developing new event platforms that have already hugely benefitted the town.

A significant change of perception of Newquay and showcasing of many of the wonderful attractions and locations, through a strategic PR and marketing campaign. With ongoing media activity the BID has also prevented exaggerated TV documentaries and ‘reality’ shows and has effectively managed negative coverage.

Newquay BID has created and developed key tools that enabled Newquay to communicate to the Newquay community as well as a wider audience. Seven Magazine now in its seventh issue featuring many great Newquay businesses and interesting individuals. Newquay BID’s official Facebook page Love Newquay has nearly10, 000 followers and its Twitter page has 1, 449 followers. These are now great community platforms for those visiting Newquay and those who live in the town permanently.

The Independent Food & Drink Guide and Independent Shopping Campaign which was created by Newquay BID, is a fantastic utility for hotels and accommodation providers, as well as shops and individuals. The colourful and helpful guide highlights all the fantastic eateries and places to have a drink within the BID area.

A UK nationwide marketing campaign was undertaken and included an extensive advertising campaign across the London Underground. 20 large posters were present in key Underground locations enticing commuters to Newquay. This provided major presence for Newquay to an affluent audience whilst also driving commentary on social media platforms.

A succession of key UK journalists have been invited to Newquay which has resulted in over £500,000 worth of positive media coverage in key target national and regional newspapers as well as online platforms.  These press trips have showcased hotel and B&B stays in Newquay and supported a plethora of local establishments, spas, activities and attractions, providing them with a PR presence they are unlikely to have had otherwise.

Newquay BID campaigned for additional funds for Newquay Town through the Mary Portas campaign and was successful in receiving over £10,000 of additional finance. This additional money has allowed for significant development of new footfall driving events and the invaluable sponsorship support of numerous Newquay-based events which may not have survived otherwise. These include the Fish Festival, the Christmas Festival, Newquay Carnival, The Music & Ale Festival, the Zombie Crawl, the Night Surf, Beach Cricket, outdoor cinema screenings and many more.

Newquay BID has also re-energised the town’s Christmas activities which has lifted festive spirits in Newquay over the last few years. Working with the Town Council it has encouraged shoppers into the town centre with week-long activities, creative events and helped gather the community together at such a wonderful time of the year. Events this Christmas included the Lantern parade, Miracle Theatre and the much-loved reindeer parade which dramatically increased the footfall to the town.

As part of  the Newquay BID ‘greening project’, working with Newquay in Bloom, the BID invests in over 30 hanging baskets throughout the town which provides colourful decoration and high impact for low cost.

The creation of a Newquay Loyalty Card Scheme provides locals with offer and discounts at local businesses, encouraging them to support year round trade in the resort.

Newquay BID continues to invest in Newquay with behind the scenes work to address the problem of the ever increasing vacant units in Newquay. The creation and distribution of investment brochures containing key information and statistics to entice potential retailers to Newquay and to raise awareness of Newquay as great trading location. Newquay BID will also continue to be a lobbying voice for businesses to ensure that the local authority is delivering baseline agreement standards and BID provision is above this.

Newquay BID has generated over £35,000 of additional income brought in throughout the life of Newquay BID to enhance key projects or deliver new innovative projects. This year, the BID will also be targeting a variety of coach tour operator providers to entice them into the town through a host of newly created tourist activities. This is to prevent coach tours simply stopping off in the town and then moving on to other popular tourist spots, keeping them here in Newquay is important.

Following 2 years of planning and discussions, Newquay is finally all set for a complete renovation of its signage system which will be fully implemented at the end of April this year. This was another project that has been carried out by the BID. The vibrant new signs will add some colour and clarity to the currently confusing navigation system, helping visitors find all of Newquay’s retail offerings, delightful eateries and popular attractions again boosting awareness of Newquay’s fantastic potential.

For more information on the amazing work that Newquay BID has done during its existence, please see the website at: http://www.newquaybid.co.uk/