The Knightsbridge Partnership BID recently held its official launch at The Bulgari Hotel with over 100 business representative guests from across the district in attendance.
Outlining the BID’s vision for the coming five years, following a 90% majority vote in favour of the Partnership, Steven Medway, Chief Executive of the Knightsbridge Partnership outlined five Pillars of forward-looking activity:
- Supporting Business Recovery
- Harnessing the Power of Partnership
- Leveraging the benefits of International Centre designation
- Driving transformational change
- Providing business support and insight
“We will work in partnership with local businesses and key stakeholders including residents and the wider community to make sure we secure a vibrant, viable and sustainable future for Knightsbridge.
“We have £6 million of new private sector investment to spend over five years – this will go towards the ongoing recovery from the pandemic, upgrading the public realm, improving traffic management, enhancing the local environment and promoting the district.
“We have already established the Street Team and provide regular news updates to businesses through our weekly newsletter and new website.
We also act as the collective voice of our Members, responding on their behalf to consultations on issue such as changes to bus services; business rates; options for online sales tax, and lobbying the government on key issues that affects trading like the abolition of tax-free shopping.
We are determined to be a catalyst for much-needed improvements, which will benefit everyone who lives and works here.”
Other key comments from the launch event included:
Michael Ward, Chairman of Knightsbridge Partnership
“I’m proud to be Chairman of this BID. It is about the community, businesses, and driving forward and representing Knightsbridge on a bigger scale. But also making sure we do the smaller things, like collecting rubbish and ensuring the streets are clean. It’s this holistic approach that makes the whole process so exciting.
“I’m particularly pleased to welcome our two Council leaders today – Cllr Adam Hug, leader of Westminster City Council, and Cllr Elizabeth Campbell, leader of Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea – it is only by working in partnership with both councils that we can really make a difference.
Cllr Adam Hug, leader of Westminster City Council
“The BIDs share many of the same objectives as the local authorities – to make Westminster cleaner and safer, to reduce traffic, to support getting local people into employment and supporting business members. We are also delighted with the Westminster Works recruitment scheme that has recently launched, which aims to get people into good quality, long-term jobs.
“Westminster has long supported our local BIDs – we have 17 of them and we’re delighted this is one of our new ones. They have a hugely important role in leadership and place, and we know significant additional investment is delivered through the BIDs.”
Cllr Elizabeth Campbell, leader of Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea
“Within a few months the BID has made the community feel safer, cleaner and more welcoming. As we all know retail districts have a constant need to innovate to tempt consumers so they stay longer and visit often. We’re delighted the BID will use modern marketing techniques to put Knightsbridge on the map for our international visitors and ensure they flock back frequently.
“I’m very pleased to see local Westminster councillors here mingling with their Chelsea counterparts. Because the Brompton Road is the boundary between our two boroughs we need to work even harder together on cross border issues.”
Helen Brocklebank, CEO of Walpole concluded the event by sharing findings linked to the value of high-end tourism in the district.
Among research highlights she noted: “The UK and Europe remain the most popular destinations for international tourists, who spend around 600 billion euros each year.
“Knightsbridge in particular is a beacon for high-end shoppers, who spend 70% of their money on culture, entertainment, shopping and dining. Furthermore, for every £1 they spend in five-star accommodation, a further £8 is spent in the local economy.”