Solihull BID has restructured and strengthened its team of town hosts and security patrols to reflect the changing face of the town centre and needs of member businesses.
The Business Improvement District begins its third five-year term representing the town centre in August after a successful renewal ballot of its 457 member businesses was carried out in November 2019.
In readiness for its new term, the BID has appointed three Business Hosts – Julie Fox, Rachael Miller and Alice Stanley – whose job it is to welcome visitors and new businesses to the town centre and help grow the BID’s calendar of social events, expos, business clubs and awards.
Working between the hours of 9am-5.30pm, Monday to Saturday, the Business Hosts are being described as the ‘eyes and ears’ of the town centre.
Melanie Palmer, CEO Solihull BID, said: “Our new team reflects the needs of our businesses. The original Town Host role needed to be separated out to ensure the crime deterrent aspect is strengthened reinforcing the message that Solihull has zero tolerance for crime and anti-social behaviour.
“We also recognised that the business engagement aspect of the original town host role should have a more focused approach and our new Business Hosts have already been hailed a success with superb feedback from our businesses.”
Supporting the Business Hosts are two first aid trained and SIA badged Street Wardens – Jason and Amy – who bring experience in deterring business crime, shoplifting and anti-social behaviour. The team will also be strengthened further as the recruitment for a third Street Warden is under way. Working on a rolling rota of coverage, they will help train BID member businesses to help them become more efficient in stock loss prevention and identifying criminal and anti-social activity.
The Street Wardens will also raise awareness of the ‘Disc’ community-based online crime prevention tool which uses group instant messages and other digital connections to provide an immediate response to criminal activity.
Solihull BID was created in 2010 to help support a thriving business community around the town centre, including Mell Square, Touchwood and The Core. Its new term will begin on August 1, 2020.
As part of its renewal process the BID asked its members what it should prioritise for its new term with enhanced street security and ambassadorial roles a key request.
The BID will continue to provide a team of weekend ‘Evening Guardians’ who work alongside door staff at bars and clubs at weekends.