Belfast One BID secures second term in £4.5m city boost

Belfast city centre businesses have voted to continue being part of their Business Improvement District (BID), Belfast One, until 2026 in a move that will give the city a £4.5m boost.

By Claire Cartmill
Tuesday, 30th March 2021, 7:12 pm
Stephen Mewha, chair of Belfast One Business Improvement District (BID) and the organisation’s managing director Kathleen McBride
Stephen Mewha, chair of Belfast One Business Improvement District (BID) and the organisation’s managing director Kathleen McBride

An independent re-ballot process was launched in February to ensure the BID which started in 2016, could continue for a second five-year term.

Of the businesses which voted, 86% elected to remain as part of the BID. This totalled 95% by rateable value.

By securing the BID’s next term, the businesses have given Belfast One a mandate to deliver its five year business plan on their behalf. It sets out a plan for the city centre to deliver a safe, clean and active space where businesses can flourish through driving footfall, increasing sustainability and offering cost saving initiatives while enhancing the attractiveness of the area.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The projects delivered between 2021 and 2026 will build on five years of successful local partnerships and high profile events to promote the city centre, instigated by the BID team and directed by a voluntary board made up of local representatives.

Stephen Mewha, Chair of Belfast One Board of Directors, said: “We welcome this result, which has been achieved through the hard work of the BID team over the past five years, and are excited about supporting city centre businesses to fulfil our long-term vision for a sustainable future.

“We all know a significant shift is taking place which will impact how our city centre operates in the future and that the global pandemic has accelerated these changes.

“But Belfast One is forward-thinking and this has positioned us to be flexible, adaptive and responsive to new situations and new challenges.

“We look forward to working for our business community to develop positive experiences for all who visit the city centre.”

Managing Director of Belfast One Kathleen McBride, said: “This is great news for Belfast and an important commitment from local businesses for their future. We want to thank our businesses for their continued support.

“During the consultation process our businesses told us what support they want to see after lockdown and this has shaped the recovery strategy within our business plan.

“We want to be a driving force in their success and we believe that continuing the BID’s work is even more important now than ever.

“We are looking forward to working with them as we emerge from lockdown and open up the city after a very difficult year.

“Our partnerships with key organisations, including Belfast City Council, Belfast Chamber of Commerce and the PSNI, will be vital as we continue to improve the city centre and make it a more welcoming place for visitors and businesses to invest, work and relax.”

A message from the Editor:

Thank you for reading this story on our website. While I have your attention, I also have an important request to make of you.

In order for us to continue to provide high quality and trusted local news on this free-to-read site, I am asking you to also please purchase a copy of our newspaper whenever you are able to do so.

Our journalists are highly trained and our content is independently regulated by IPSO to some of the most rigorous standards in the world. But being your eyes and ears comes at a price. So we need your support more than ever to buy our newspapers during this crisis.

With the coronavirus lockdown having a major impact on many of our local valued advertisers - and consequently the advertising that we receive - we are more reliant than ever on you helping us to provide you with news and information by buying a copy of our newspaper when you can safely.

You can also enjoy unlimited access to the best news from across Northern Ireland and the UK by subscribing to

With a digital subscription, you can read more than five articles, see fewer ads, enjoy faster load times, and get access to exclusive newsletters and content. Visit now to sign up.

Thank you