People urged to keep shopping in Letchworth despite string of changes to Business Improvement District

James Peachey has been appointed operations manager of the BID

James Peachey has been appointed operations manager of the BID - Credit: Archant

A North Herts District Councillor has urged people to keep shopping in the town, despite a string of changes to the Letchworth Business Improvement District set up over the past year.

James Peachey will leave the BID on August 21, after resigning from his role as operations director following just seven months in the role.

Councillor David Levett, who is the district council’s executive member for planning and enterprise, said: “There have been a number of interim arrangements to try to ensure that the transition from Letchworth’s Town Centre Partnership to the BID company runs smoothly.

“However, persuading people to shop ‘in-town’ requires a concerted effort, not just by a town centre or BID manager, but by a number of key stakeholders including council representatives, the Heritage Foundation, Morrison’s, North Herts College, and traders whose livelihood is being compromised by shoppers heading elsewhere.

“While we are sorry to see James go all the organisations remain fully committed to working together to revitalise our town centre.”

Mr Peachey said: “The decision to leave has not been an easy one but I believe it is the right thing to do – for myself and the BID.

“I took on the role as I had high-hopes of making a positive contribution to the town.

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“However, over the last few months I have learned more about the challenges faced by the businesses, the goals of the BID and the requirements of the role I find myself in.

“I no longer feel I am the right person to oversee the BID operations. It is right that I step aside and let someone else take over.

“I believe strongly that Letchworth is a great place with a very bright future. I will continue to support the town as best I can but as a resident, rather than an employee.”

The BID board will be managing the recruitment process and once a new person is hired, Mr Peachey will be bringing them up to speed – in the meantime BID events and market co-ordinator Maija Lama will push ahead with upcoming events.

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