A Business Improvement District Questions and Answers



A Business Improvement District (BID) is an active, business-led partnership that works with the council to define quality services and standards throughout Brackmills Industrial Estate. A private-sector led Business Improvement District (BID) Company then buys in additional activities to supplement those already being provided. The improvements to the overall environment around the businesses can address a range of issues which impacts ultimately on the operation and profitability of all the businesses in the defined area.

The ‘extras’ can be whatever the businesses feel will add value to their business.

There is a voting mechanism linked to the Business Improvement District (BID) to ensure that what is being proposed is commercially acceptable. If a majority of businesses that vote in favour of the BID’s proposition then it becomes compulsory for every business in the area to pay a contribution towards the overall costs. All the money collected funds the additional services and a consortium of business representatives who form the Business Improvement District (BID) company board carefully controls the process. So, the projects tackled are local, the vote is local, the control of the spend is local and the benefit end up benefiting the business's bottom line.


Brackmills Industrial Estate has attracted significant new investment over the years from global brands and high profile business names. It is reputed to be one of the premier industrial estates and business parks in the country.

Northampton Borough Council and Northamptonshire County Council provide a range of services to the estate's businesses but are under pressure with constant demands placed on them by Central Government while the budgets to support them continue to decline.

New money, new energy and new ideas have to be found if the businesses are to face the increasing economic challenges of operating in a trading environment where customer expectation continually increases at a rate equal to the increase in the costs of production, overheads and operation. The challenges that exist in and around businesses have to be tackled in an innovative and efficient way. They affect everybody, so everybody has to contribute to their resolution.


  • A BID can generate sustainable funding that is 100% ring-fenced and controlled by the businesses in a very transparent and open process.
  • A BID stops some businesses paying their way while others prosper on the back of this contribution.
  • A BID will improve the profit performance of individual businesses by influencing issues such as access for goods, services and staff, security and safety on the roads and open areas around the businesses and potentially reduced operating costs such as energy supply and waste disposal through a group rather than an individual business approach.

The businesses get to vote to pay a little extra for the improvements they want to see on the estate.


A BID is a unique opportunity for businesses to join together to shape a new deal for estate - to benefit all the businesses. New innovative thinking, energy and action can start to generate a real difference. Sharing passion between businesses and like-minded individuals around will help re-establish the estate as a premier place to operate and do business.


  • Enhances the image of the estate for visiting customers and suppliers and creates an improved sense of wellbeing and pride in the area within which people work - potentially helping sales, increased leverage on supplier costs, improved productivity and improved retention of skilled people to the area. All of these factors potentially have a positive impact on business profitability.
  • With rising business profitability and greater demand for stake in the area's success, property values advance too, further increasing the return on the business's investment.
  • There is also more flexibility and credibility to address issues of concern to other agencies, authorities and non-government organisations.
  • Businesses have a local voice on the future of the environment around and their opinions count.
  • A BID creates a more appealing and safer environment for the businesses and its employees.
  • A BID offers a fairer system too because all who invest gain the benefit and the compulsory payment aspect of the Business Improvement District (BID) means that includes everyone - there is no freeloading.


"To create a highly effective and functional operating environment on Brackmills Industrial Estate which supports and attracts businesses and inward investment"

Following on from extensive research and consultation with businesses, employers and other stakeholders the consensus view is that the principal goal is to provide an environment which enables businesses to operate more effectively and profitably in the estate. To achieve this, we have developed a programme of investment which will be delivered through four strategic aims and their related projects.

  • Work closely with others to provide a great infrastructure and a smart working environment for businesses to operate and people and services to access and move around, safely and effectively.
  • Work closely with the Police to maintain a safe and secure working environment for freight transport, all vehicles, customers and the people who work on the estate.
  • Provide a smart, tidy and safe environment which supports the values and standards of the businesses which operate on the estate.
  • Support businesses and staff who work on Brackmills through the provision of facilities, services and benefits which attract skilled people and which promote a positive and productive working environment.


Please contact the team for more information on the BID.