The team behind an initiative to transform Chester’s commercial centre has appointed a dedicated city centre manager to support the city’s business community.
Peter Lewis, 61, was officially announced as the Chester city centre manager for the CH1 Chester BID (Business Improvement District) Company, a collection of leading Chester businesses working together to reinvigorate the city.
With a long and distinguished career in local authority including city centre management roles in both Liverpool and Manchester, Peter brings more than 25 years of experience to the position and has already started work.
Paul Daniels, Chairman of CH1 Chester BID Company and Managing Director of thebestofchester, said: “We have always maintained that having one coherent voice to speak for Chester’s business community is essential and, in Peter, we have found someone who can deliver that one hundred per cent.
“Peter is the ideal man for the job. His experience on previous successful BIDS makes him a tremendous asset to the team, and we’re confident that he will help us to secure that all important yes vote come June 2014.”
Peter said: “I’m delighted to be offered this role and work alongside such an exciting and dynamic team.
“I’ve been so impressed with the sense of positivity and commitment from all those involved in the management of the city centre and the efforts currently being seen in the implementation of a BID.
“Chester has struggled in recent years, as have many other cities. The economic downturn and other major factors have clearly had a detrimental effect on our city centres but Chester remains a wonderful place to live, shop and visit and it’s a pleasure to come here and work on an initiative to re-energize such a beautiful city.
“I’ve seen first-hand the benefits that a successful city centre management service can bring to a city and how a city can thrive when a BID is introduced. I would encourage all the businesses in the proposed BID area to consider the power that a collective voice will give to the city if we all work together.”
Peter’s role will involve working closely with businesses across the city centre to hear first-hand what their priorities are and what changes they want to see. Peter will also work together with the CH1 Chester BID Company as the city moves towards a BID ballot in June 2014.
Come June 2014, businesses within a designated area of Chester city centre will be asked to vote on whether or not to pay a 1% levy on top of their business rates, which will go back into the city to make the improvements businesses agree are needed.