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Scotland’s Improvement Districts appoints National Programme Manager

New role will play a key part in the strengthening and expanding the work of improvement districts across the country

Scotland’s Improvement Districts (SIDs) has appointed Rebecca Mather as its new National Programme Manager.

She has been promoted to the post, having worked as part of the wider SIDs and Scotland’s Towns Partnership team for the past year.

Rebecca has a long association with the country’s improvement district network, having worked alongside it as a project manager before relocating to New Zealand for seven years, where she worked as Engagement Manager for the Institute of Professional Engineers NZ. 

Her appointment comes as work continues to develop existing improvement districts and grow the pipeline of potential new ones in communities across the country.

SIDs supports districts to drive inclusive and collaborative economic growth in their areas by providing national strategic guidance, delivering training and support while building strong partnerships.

Rebecca will be supported in her new role by experienced project manager Bill Harvey, who is well-known for his work advising improvement districts over many years.

She said: “I am looking forward to this new role and to working with a diverse range of communities across the country.

“Improvement districts make a real difference in the places they serve by drawing people together to drive up footfall, galvanising support for local businesses and boosting regional economies.

“They are forces for good which have real potential to grow stronger, both in breadth and impact. As the national hub for improvement districts we can give access to the skills, expertise – and inspiration – to help take work to the next level to create better, more sustainable communities.”

There are 35 improvement districts in operation across the country, ranging from traditional Business Improvement Districts to Tourism Improvement Districts, Island and Food and Drink Improvement Districts. All are democratically voted for by levy-payers in their area.

SIDs is part of the wider Scotland’s Towns Partnership (STP) family. Rebecca will report directly to STP Chief Officer Kimberley Guthrie in her new role.

Kimberley, who leads SIDs, said: “Rebecca is a real asset to the work that SIDs does. She will help us to maintain momentum in our work across the country, helping improvement districts to deliver collectively and for their communities.

“I am delighted that she is growing her work with us in this new role, which will play a key part in forging new partnerships, developing our pipeline of potential improvement districts and expanding the numbers we see in operation.”