National BIDs Conference




This year’s fully booked conference takes place on Thursday 8th November at Downing College, in the heart of Cambridge.

The day will include robust debate on the issues that our BIDs and places are facing. No topic is off limits for our speakers in looking at how our places need to evolve to survive, the opportunities and challenges this brings and the Brexit effect.

We are delighted to be joined by the Rt Hon Lord Adonis, Jackie Sadek, David Downey and Marie Hickey. A line up that is sure to spark some healthy debate.

The reality is that demographics, technology and cultural shifts are shaping how we spend our time and our money – it will be this that will shape our town centres in the future. Experiences and service is now more key than ever before. The new ways we shop will mean a fundamental rationalisation in the amount of retail space we need. How this is being played out in places and the trends which are throwing up new opportunities will be discussed. We will examine examples of best practice globally – where have new uses been introduced and what impact this had on footfall, spend etc. We will also look at the role of public realm/Place-shaping initiatives and a look at the challenges – disparate ownership, rates, planning.


Delegates also have a choice of Masterclasses in the afternoon including;

  • Place Making: Rethinking the high street with Michelle Buxton & Helen Maguire, Toolbox Group
  • The role of Crime Reduction Partnerships with Max McPartland, National Business Crime Centre
  • The value in place making and the art of how to do it with Marc Tomes, Allen Scott Landscape Architecture
  • Working with BIDs to support the night time economy with Brett Crabtree, DrinkAware
  • Proving the value of marketing to your levy payers with Neil Prentice, Jacob Bailey
  • How to achieve the best press results for your BID with Ian Payne
  • Successful business don’t think big, they think broad with Matt Lloyd, Openreach
  • Avoiding the biggest pitfalls of running a BID ballot with Lee Walker, CMS
  • The rise in BIDs is leading to more considered voting by national retailers with Jill Farnsworth, Watford BID

Date: Thursday 8th November

Location: Downing College, Cambridge

Delegate rate = £260 + VAT

British BIDs member delegate rate = £195 +VAT

The day will include a variety of robust policy and industry debates whilst also allowing essential practical showcasing, discussions and plenty of opportunities for networking. The National BID Survey results will be revealed and analysed, the National BID Awards will be presented and the Certificate in BID Management classes will graduate. The day will culminate with an evening drinks reception.

British BIDs members receive a 25% discount. To book your place, please enter your unique membership number in the 'promotional code' box to validate and receive your membership discount. To ensure a smooth and efficient booking process, a debit card or credit card transaction is recommended. If you are unsure of your membership number, then please contact the British BIDs team on 0845 112 0118. To purchase a ticket via a direct invoice, please contact Drew on 0845 112 0118 or email

Take a look back at photos from last year here.

Join the conversation #BIDSCONF18

Our Sponsor

Our Sponsor

We are pleased to announce Blachere Illumination Limited as the conference main sponsors. Garry Brown has said “Having previously worked with British BIDs, Blachere Illumination are thrilled to be the main sponsor of this year's conference. The conference is a superb platform for likeminded people to come together to share experiences.”