Hamilton Our Town spearheads initiatives to beautify public space and help businesses operate safely as shops, pubs and restaurants reopen.
Hamilton Our Town, the Business Improvement District for the South Lanarkshire town, has been at the heart of efforts to beautify public space and get businesses ready as the town reopens.
The BID has recently completed work on the former Baird’s department store façade to improve the look and feel of the town and get across the ‘shop local’ message. Following agreement from Wetherspoons, who recently bought the building and hopes to open early next year, Hamilton Our Town partnered with local businesses to create an artistic front for the unit.
To support businesses, the BID has also been offering a free pack of PPE worth up to £100 alongside free advertising in local press, the town’s main carpark and across the BID’s social media platforms.
To help increase the attractiveness and viability of public space, they have also partnered with businesses to create an outdoor hospitality seating area, and have been involved in a town centre clean-up and painting activities, working in partnership with the local authority.
Looking forward, Hamilton Our Town will plan to launch a new website to support local businesses, and are working with the local council on a dedicated town centre app.
Malcolm Thomas-Harley, BID Manager said:
“In the context of lockdown restrictions and now reopening, through the different initiatives we’ve been undertaking our mission of supporting and improving prospects for business in the Improvement District. However, there is much work to be done and we look forward continuing our support plans through this next challenging period’’.
“Feedback on the Baird’s department store façade has been fantastic and forms part of the work the BID has progressed in partnership with South Lanarkshire Council regarding the look and feel of the town centre in readiness for opening.”
There are almost 40 improvement districts in Scotland. They are vehicles for local businesses to work together and with other stakeholders to improve local economies to the benefit of their communities.
During the Covid-19 pandemic, improvement districts have played a crucial role supporting local businesses and residents, such as the provision of information, assistance with digital trading solutions, installation of health signage and infrastructure, and involvement in a range of community support initiatives.