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Five-year Twickenham improvement plan to to begin
When the eyes of world are on Twickenham for the 2015 Rugby World Cup the town hopes to be well on its way to improvement.
After securing Business Improvement District (BID) status last month a parts of the town centre will begin the five-year improvement plan.
Among proposals put forward are parking schemes, filling empty shops and promoting safety.
The BID could raise more than £300,000 a year to spend on these problems and others that businesses feel are important.
Twickenham Town Business Association chairman Bruce Lyons said: "I would say for Twickenham to have obtained BID status is an astounding opportunity.
"It is just another step on the ladder to galvanise businesses and traders, who are constantly aware we are just one of many high streets suffering.
"The town is a great place for quirky businesses and we need to create a warm atmosphere for visitors."
Twickenham is the first area in the borough to achieve BID status, while nearby Kingston was the first in the country through Kingstonfirst in 2004.
Councillor Gareth Evans, Richmond Council’s cabinet member for community, business and culture, said: "BIDs empower the local business community to shape their own vision and destiny.
"It allows businesses to generate funding and to choose how to invest this money - be it cleaning, public realm improvement, or town centre live events and performances.
"It is vital that the business community continues to go from strength to strength as the prosperity of this borough and the local economy is dependent on the fortunes of our local businesses."
The Time For Twickenham Bid manager will be Helen Smith, who has been involved with Bids in Leamington, Bournemouth and Durham since 2007.
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