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Uxbridge MP Boris Johnson urges employers to back businesses proposal to raise £500k for town centre

The foreign secretary has announced his support to turn Uxbridge town centre into a Business Improvement District

Boris Johnson has supported the Uxbridge BID(Image: Getty Images Europe)

The Member of Parliament for Uxbridge and South Ruislip has backed an ambitious new proposal designed to bring in around £500,000 worth of improvements to Uxbridge town centre.

Foreign secretary Boris Johnson spoke in favour of launching a Business Improvement District (BID) in Hillingdon 's busiest high street to fund projects to benefit customers and companies.

The project would see larger businesses pay in to a pot which would then be redistributed throughout the town centre with the aim of improving parking, cleanliness and reducing crime.

Speaking at an event for businesses held on Friday (February 24), Mr Johnson said: “I urge you all to go ahead with this programme.

“We can't get economic growth unless we have the right infrastructure.

“The key thing is its up to you.

"It's up to businesses. I think its a fantastic idea.

“I hope very much that it will be carried. I have absolutely no doubt that this Business Improvement District will be a huge huge success.”

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The BID process is now entering into the final consultation stage and businesses are expected to vote on whether they want the scheme in June or July this year.

If the project is approved by companies in Uxbridge, it is expected to be up and running by the end of 2017.

Cllr Douglas Mills(Image: Unable to verify (TMS))

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Hillingdon Council 's cabinet member for community, commerce and regeneration, Cllr Douglas Mills, said at the meeting in IBB Solicitors in Windsor Street: “This is not a local authority led scheme. This is very much you, the businesses, deciding what it is you want.

“As the local authority we will be with you 100% if you decide to go ahead, as we recognise the importance of the partnership.”

The levy would be paid by businesses in the BID area – Uxbridge town centre – with a rateable value of £10,000 or more.

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How much a business would pay in is calculated based on its rateable value of the businesses - between 1% and 1.5% worth of the rateable value would be paid into the pot a year.

In Uxbridge this would raise an estimated £450,000 to £500,000 to reinvest back into the area.

The consultation work carried out by the Uxbridge BID team have highlighted four priorities – reducing crime, accessibility, parking and transport, place marketing, and cleanliness.

These are the areas where the money could be poured in to improve the town centre.

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