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Minister backs traders’ BID to boost Llanelli economy

This press release was published under the 2011 - 2016 Welsh government

Communities Minister Lesley Griffiths has joined businesses in Llanelli to launch an ambitious regeneration scheme to boost the local economy.
Monday 05 October 2015

Traders are proposing to establish a Business Improvement District (BID) in the town, which would see them pool their resources to improve the local trading environment and increase profitability. Businesses would pay an annual levy of 1.25% every year, generating £584,000 in total to be used to:

  • increase the vibrancy of the retail sector and strengthen the business community through networking, training and mentoring
  • market Llanelli’s distinctive assets to attract visitors and local residents
  • increase safety and cleanliness
  • improve access to the town.

BIDs are becoming an increasingly popular way of increasing the prosperity of towns in Wales, with the launch in Llanelli coming less than a fortnight after business people in Gwynedd voted to create BIDs in Caernarfon and Bangor.

The Welsh Government is providing £18,750 of funding to support the development of Llanelli’s BID – known as ‘Ymlaen Llanelli’ – as part of a wide-ranging package of support for the town. This includes £1 million grant funding and £700,000 recyclable loan funding to bring empty buildings in the town centre back into use as commercial and residential properties.

Communities Minister Lesley Griffiths today met with local business people to discuss their exciting plans for the town and attend the launch of ‘Ymlaen Llanelli’. The Minister also saw first hand how properties on Stepney Street are being brought back into use thanks to Welsh Government regeneration support.

Minister for Communities and Tackling Poverty, Lesley Griffiths said:

"People’s shopping habits are changing rapidly and our towns and high streets must do all they can to embrace this change and ensure they remain interesting and vibrant places to visit. This is why I am pleased to have provided £18,750 to Carmarthenshire County Council to support the creation of this BID, which will help businesses improve profitability by pooling resources and talent.

"I was pleased to learn more about these exciting plans to boost the prosperity of the town centre, as well as seeing first hand how Welsh Government regeneration funding is transforming empty buildings in the town. I wish all those involved in the BID every success.”

Jonathan Armstrong, Chair of ‘Ymlaen Llanelli’ Business Improvement District, said:

"Ymlaen Llanelli are grateful to the Minister for taking the time to visit Llanelli today to see the exiting plans for the future of our town. The BID gives the business community collective and measured resources to be able to create a vibrant town centre once again.

"Llanelli town centre, like many towns in Wales, has suffered a downturn in its high street over recent years.  However businesses recognise the importance of change and by adapting to the demands of shoppers aim to create a fightback in the town. Today marks an important milestone in that goal, with the launch of the programme which we hope that all businesses in Llanelli will embrace and get behind."

The Welsh Government has provided £203,000 to support the development of 10 BID proposals in Aberystwyth, Abergavenny, Bridgend, Caernarfon, Bangor, Neath, Pant & Merthyr Industrial Estates, Pontypridd, Colwyn Bay, as well as Llanelli.

 

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Housing and Regeneration 05 October 2015 Regeneration Mid Wales North Wales South East Wales South West Wales
 
 

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