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Henry Smith: Time to renew the Manor Royal BID

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The Manor Royal Business Improvement District (BID) has seen Crawley-based firms work together to create an enhanced working environment for members.

It was established in June 2013 following a vote by these companies and is governed by Manor Royal businesses themselves. It is managed by an independent not-for-profit company formed by members to manage and deliver the BID business plan, as well as creating a fund to improve the business district, and attracting additional investment.

On Friday 2nd February, voting opened to renew the Manor Royal BID for another five year term to 2023.

If successful, companies across the business district would reap the rewards of around £2.6 million of funds to be reinvested, as well as any additional investment secured by the BID team.

The BID’s commitment to improving the local area has been clear to see, alongside Crawley Borough and West Sussex County Councils and Sussex Police, developments have been made to roads, infrastructure, security and green spaces.

Manor Royal is home to the largest non-retail BID in the country. The BID has listened to feedback from local businesses on issues including broadband speeds and will strive for faster connectivity for better business functionality.

If renewed, the Manor Royal BID will seek continued improvement of roads and footpaths for employees and members of the public. Subsidised and free services such as Business Watch will be delivered, adding to recent developments in security, as well as investigating the potential of generating renewable energy.

In the five years to 2015 the number of Crawley businesses increased by more than 600 to 3,600, and since 2010 unemployment in Crawley has fallen by 59 per cent. Support for business initiatives such as the Manor Royal BID will continue to bolster employment and opportunity locally and help contribute to the drop in unemployment nationally, currently at its lowest rate since 1975.

Voting for the BID ends at 5pm on 1st March 2018 and I would welcome a positive result for the renewal of the Manor Royal Business Improvement District. If successful, I look forward to seeing the proposed developments strengthen local businesses for the benefit of the people of Crawley.

Henry Smith MP

Crawley Constituenc

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Business

Cllr Brian Quinn and Crawley Mayor champion Broadfield Barton

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It is a welcome sight seeing stores opening across the town again, and none more so than in Broadfield Barton where the towns Mayor and Cllr Guidera met up with Broadfield Cllr Brian Quinn to champion the area.

Speaking about the visit Mayor Guidera said:

“I was delighted to be hosted today by almost certainly the most well-known councillor in Crawley, Broadfield Cllr Brian Quinn, for a tour of the local small businesses and charity shops at Broadfield Barton. Brian knew everybody (as I expected!) and it was a really enjoyable afternoon spent meeting the people who run the community shops that serve the residents of Broadfield so well.

One older resident stopped us and spoke about how one of the shops had been so helpful during the lockdown, going to great lengths to be able to provide fresh produce that, as we know was running out everywhere back then, so the community had what it needed over the past few, very difficult months. The friendly staff of the Santa Maria cafe, rightly proud of their fabulous Madeiran cooking, were so welcoming and having eaten there many times before I can say if you haven’t been there yet you are missing out!

They have plenty of outdoor seating too! The last place we visited was the newsagents, which is actually a fully stocked convenience store! Again, so welcoming with a great selection, even an American sweets and drinks area! Of course it’s important to mention both the relate charity shop and St Vincent’s do both raise money to serve the local community in their different capacities comma please remember them when you are done eating stuff if you live nearer to them they are very grateful for any support you offer in terms of bric-a-brac donations and clothing.

So, thank you Cllr Quinn, and thank you to all of the people who were so friendly and welcoming today, including the many residents who stopped us for photographs!”

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