AGM Update

Blackburn BID held their AGM at Blackburn College on Wednesday 28 February. 


Chair Nicola Clayton opened the meeting with a welcome. She thanked Ronnie, the BID exec team, and Viva PR for their support in achieving a successful YES vote in the ballot for a third term. 


For the next 12 month period, the board will be a smaller constitution, meeting less frequently but for longer, supported by a number of working groups. 


Catherine Price, Blackburn BID Manager 

After a showreel outlining all the events and marketing activity by Catherine Price, Blackburn BID manager, PS Andrew Green spoke on behalf of the Blackburn town centre policing team. 


Beever and Struthers 

A financial review of Blackburn BID was given by Beever and Struthers. 


PS Andrew Green 

He updated the room on a number of items including trends in crime over the past five years, operations including Operation Beacon (targeting repeat shoplifters), Operation unity (a divisional response team working with other partner organisations), repeat Anti Social Behaviour issues, and Operation Night Garden (focusing on violent crime). 

PS Green mentioned that a new knife crime first responder kit has now been installed on the outside of The Mall. 

There is also a recruitment drive for PCSOs to help fill current vacancies, including one for the town centre when the current PCSO leaves to join the police. 


Councillor Phil Riley  

Councillor Phil Riley, Leader of Blackburn with Darwen Council spoke, outlining plans for the borough. 

He gave an update on HMOs in the area, the plans for the redevelopment of the existing Morrisons site, proposed Skills and Education Campus and Cyber Zone on the former Brown Street Car Park, and refurbishment of St John’s Church that was damaged by fire. 

The also spoke about continuing to position Blackburn as a town of culture, creativity and the great outdoors – backed by The Making Rooms, Blackburn Pride, national Festival of making, Blackburn Museum and Art Gallery – which this year celebrates its 150th anniversary, Blakey Moor Cultural Quarter update, High Street Accelerator funding for King William Street, the arrival of Akbar’s at King George’s Hall, and filming by Rizwan Wadan. 

He also gave updates on the Cotton Exchange receiving planning, the refurbishment of the Victoria Building and Devolution Deal and what that meant for Lancashire. 


Blackburn BID: 2024 

Catherine Price gave the attendees an update on the programme of events that are planned for 2024 – starting with the Easter Escapade, running 29 March to 13th April; the National Festival of Making – in which Blackburn BID is supporting the Future Maker’s Market – on 6-7 July, Alices Adventures in Blackburn Lego trail 9-27 August, Pumpkin carving on 26 October and Christmas Lights Switch on to he held on 23 November. 

These events, are in addition to others being supported by the BID in the town centre – such as the Crescent Carnival on 13 April, BwD Children’s Literature festival on 3-8 June, Blackburn Pride 15 June, National Festival of making 6-7 July, Keep on Keeping On in November, Museum of the Moon at Blackburn Cathedral from 4 November and Blackburn Festival of Light. A working group will look at how to maximise each event to bring additional footfall into the town centre and maximise the impact for businesses. 


Catherine also spoke about a planned programme of training and workshops, to be delivered by partners such as Newground Together and Viva PR, and recent successful campaigns such as the ‘Love Indies’ campaign, running throughout February. 


Catherine said the BID would cease funding a town centre police officer, and instead hire a Street Ranger to offer both security patrols, member engagement, and event support. 


Executive Board Election: 

The BID exec board were elected for the next 12 months. 


The meeting ended with a vote of thanks from Paul Mason to Catherine Price, for all the hard work and dedication she has shown to ensure BID members see a positive impact from their membership.