Further step forward for Tweed Valley tourism BID


Plans to develop a tourism-based Business Improvement District (BID) project for the Tweed Valley have taken a further step forward with applications for the position of project coordinator now being invited. The post, which is for an initial 18-month period, will be taken up in April, with the successful applicant charged with driving a collaborative effort to bring more tourism-related business to the Tweed Valley.

This appointment follows initial seed-corn funding awarded to the Tweed Valley Tourist Consortium by the Scottish Government and Scottish Borders Council, announced in November last year.

Once the project coordinator is in position, work will begin on contacting all relevant businesses in the area, collecting feedback ahead of creating a comprehensive business plan for the BID. The BID will include businesses in the Tweed Valley area which are directly involved in tourism, as well as those for whom visitors are an important part of their trading activity.

The project coordinator will be aided by the BID steering group, which consists of local tourism businesses and many of the area’s large hotels, with the additional help of people from other BID projects and representatives of Scottish Borders Council. The project follows on from successful work carried out by the Tweed Valley Tourism Consortium over the past decade, and will initially be supported them.

Once the business plan is finalised, the BID proposal will be put to a vote for all the local businesses who may wish to become part of the project, with a ballot scheduled for autumn 2019. If approved, the scheme will enable Scottish Borders Council to collect a compulsory levy from all the businesses involved, to be invested in delivering the agreed plan.

The overall vision of the Tweed Valley tourism BID is to position the area as a world-class cycling and outdoor activity destination, as well as to grow tourism visits and spend in the area through its promotion as a sustainable, year-round destination that capitalises on its unique geography, heritage, natural environment and people.

Originally conceived in Canada during the 1970s, the BID concept has since been taken around the world, with more than 135 in the UK alone. If approved, the Tweed Valley BID will become only the second such tourism-focussed BID in Scotland, following that of Visit Inverness Loch Ness in 2014. 



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