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CITY GROWTH: ‘Buddies’ in bowlers welcome business to Sheffield

BID Buddy Ian Mott, helping to direct visitors to Sheffield.
BID Buddy Ian Mott, helping to direct visitors to Sheffield.

‘BID Buddies’ in bowler hats have hit the streets of Sheffield to provide a professional welcome to investors.

The five-strong team have been trained to offer a cheerful welcome, ‘wayfinding and reassurance’, seven days-a-week.

BID Buddies Ian Mott and Chris Wild. The service will operate seven days a week.

BID Buddies Ian Mott and Chris Wild. The service will operate seven days a week.

The team was formed in response to growing calls from the city’s office and professional services sector for a ‘street concierge’ service to greet a growing number of business visitors.

Five jobs have been created by Sheffield BID - Business Improvement District - which is funded via a levy on city centre businesses.

Manager Diane Jarvis said it was time to create a more professional environment for business.

“The office market is going from strength-to-strength with Sheffield fast becoming a location that is attractive to investors.

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“With a central business district emerging around the Heart of the City II creating a new sense of upmarket vibrancy, the time is right to introduce a team who will appeal not only to visitors but to prime UK and international investors as well.

“The evolving nature of the high street means that we need to re-imagine the city centre as a place where businesses can locate and create jobs. The city must also be a place people want to visit. We must focus on creating a more attractive and professional environment for a wider range of businesses.

“The BID Buddies will bring new momentum and energy to the city centre, complementing the role of the council’s existing ambassador team.”

They will join three other BID teams including a dedicated police resource, a team of cleaners who remove graffiti and Street Rangers who clean the streets each morning. Sheffield City Council also has a team of Ambassadors who help visitors.

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The Buddies will also promote BID businesses, city centre events and attractions.

SHEFFIELD is on the up. A record number of firms are moving into the city centre creating a buzz in offices, restaurants, cafes and shops. The Star, with Sheffield Business Improvement District, is celebrating with the City Growth series.