Essential Edinburgh - An overwhelming majority of city centre businesses have voted to support the area’s successful Business Improvement District – with a whopping 91% backing the five-year plan put forward by the BID company Essential Edinburgh.

And with a turnout of almost 70% – both majority and turnout figures are record highs – that will see the city centre businesses continue to invest more than £1 million a year of their own money into making the heart of the capital even more successful. There are 550 levy paying businesses in the area rising to 650 once Edinburgh St James opens it doors in 2020.

The positive turnout and huge level of support is a ringing endorsement of the work to date of Essential Edinburgh, and also of the business plan put to the businesses for the next five years. The previous ballot in 2013 saw a 78% majority on a 58% turnout.

Denzil Skinner, chair of Essential Edinburgh, said: “The result leaves no doubt that city centre businesses are seeing real value in the programme delivered by Essential Edinburgh, and in their continued investment in this wonderful city centre.”

Roddy Smith, Chief Executive, added; “I am delighted at this very positive result, and I think it is testament to the quality of work delivered by a committed staff team and Board at Essential Edinburgh to deliver quality services and initiatives in addition to the normal, statutory ones delivered by the council.

“Essential Edinburgh will deliver on our plan, as we have done over the past ten years, to ensure the £1 million a year our businesses invest in the city centre is spent wisely, innovatively and on exciting projects and services that make the city centre the best in Britain.”

Calum Young-Smith, owner of Latitude Coffee on Rose Street, said: “I am delighted that Essential Edinburgh has been so resoundingly voted in for another five years. Like the vast majority of businesses in the BID area we see real value in investing in our city centre. We are confident that Essential Edinburgh ensures that money is well spent in ways that enhance our area as a wonderful place to live, shop, eat, drink and work in.”


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