Taunton Town Centre Company ceases trading - decision follows failed BID attempt

Town Centre Company Chairman Guy Bottard

Town Centre Company Chairman Guy Bottard

First published in News
Last updated

TAUNTON Town Centre Company, which runs a number of events including the switch on of the Christmas lights and a Bank Holiday family fun event, has ceased trading today (March 12).

The company has insufficient funds to continue operating.

The crisis was sparked by the failure of businesses to support a plan for a second Business Improvement District scheme in the town centre that would have raised £1.3million over five years to promote the town and attract more shoppers.

The board of directors have just issued the following statement:

"The Board of Directors of the Taunton Town Centre Company has today decided that, following the result of the recent BID ballot, the Company has no viable option but to cease trading with immediate effect.

"The ballot rejected by a narrow margin the Company’s proposal for a Business Improvement District (BID).

"The Board respects this decision, which follows the rejection of an earlier BID proposal in 2012. This result leaves the Company with inadequate funding to operate effectively on behalf of the businesses of Taunton.

"The Board has taken this decision with great regret. The Company has been proud to work for the benefit of Taunton’s businesses since it was established in 2006, and before that as a Partnership.

"The Board is deeply grateful for the support and co-operation it has received businesses and organisations in Taunton, notably its Members.

"The Board has been in touch with its Members separately.

"The Town Centre Company Chairman Guy Bottard said: 'I have been a director of this company since its creation in 2006 and this is a very sad day for the directors and staff of the company, the employed staff in particular.

'My heartfelt thanks go to them all for all their hard work over the years. The demise of the Town Centre Company and the loss of the town centre management expertise built up within it will be missed by the businesses in the town.

'However being an eternal optimist I believe that when one door closes another always opens and that we should regard this as a new beginning.

'I am confident that given time somebody or some people will fill the void that is left behind by TTCC and they will continue to find ways of promoting Taunton throughout Somerset and beyond in order to attract business into our town.'

Comments (15)

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12:32pm Wed 12 Mar 14

nat_11 says...

It's official Taunton IS dead!
It's official Taunton IS dead! nat_11
  • Score: 21

12:57pm Wed 12 Mar 14

Cider_luvr says...

The town centre would be better if it was pedestrianised!
The town centre would be better if it was pedestrianised! Cider_luvr
  • Score: -10

1:18pm Wed 12 Mar 14

Slow down! says...

Will anyone notice?
Will anyone notice? Slow down!
  • Score: 24

3:56pm Wed 12 Mar 14

Monument says...

Years and years of lack of future planning by successive councils has led to taunton being in the state it is.

Seriously think there should be moves to make somewhere else the County Town.
Years and years of lack of future planning by successive councils has led to taunton being in the state it is. Seriously think there should be moves to make somewhere else the County Town. Monument
  • Score: 8

4:07pm Wed 12 Mar 14

Slow down! says...

Street?
Street? Slow down!
  • Score: -6

4:19pm Wed 12 Mar 14

ShoulderToShoulder says...

The outgoing board of the now defunct Town Centre Company (TCC) said:

"The demise of the Town Centre Company and the loss of the town centre management expertise built up within it will be missed by the businesses in the town."

Hmmmmm... businesses can, and indeed have, spoken for themselves in relation to this. Businesses were fully aware that a 'no' vote would effectively mean the end of the TCC...Businesses effectively rejected the BID for being the useless unfit for purpose entity that it is and consigned the equally useless and unfit for purpose TCC in to the dustbin of history.

End of.

Oh, by the way, how many empty shop units are there in Taunton town centre?

The only oft used, stock response from the useless TCC and its supporters at the S C Gazette, has been that the ratio of vacant to occupied shop units is not the highest in the country - or as the spin doctors have presented it there are places where unnoccupancy is even higher! For this reason alone, Taunton businesses are presumably supposed to be grateful and should be seen to be dancing around the streets in a wild carnival of celebration! The truth is that it is mainly the multi billionaire corporates that are profiting in this period of capitalist austerity, and even many of them have collapsed. Increasing numbers of smaller business however, are losing the battle to survive and are consequently failing... This is one of the inevitable consequences of the system of capitalist anarchy that so clearly benefits the billionaire class.
The outgoing board of the now defunct Town Centre Company (TCC) said: "The demise of the Town Centre Company and the loss of the town centre management expertise built up within it will be missed by the businesses in the town." Hmmmmm... businesses can, and indeed have, spoken for themselves in relation to this. Businesses were fully aware that a 'no' vote would effectively mean the end of the TCC...Businesses effectively rejected the BID for being the useless unfit for purpose entity that it is and consigned the equally useless and unfit for purpose TCC in to the dustbin of history. End of. Oh, by the way, how many empty shop units are there in Taunton town centre? The only oft used, stock response from the useless TCC and its supporters at the S C Gazette, has been that the ratio of vacant to occupied shop units is not the highest in the country - or as the spin doctors have presented it there are places where unnoccupancy is even higher! For this reason alone, Taunton businesses are presumably supposed to be grateful and should be seen to be dancing around the streets in a wild carnival of celebration! The truth is that it is mainly the multi billionaire corporates that are profiting in this period of capitalist austerity, and even many of them have collapsed. Increasing numbers of smaller business however, are losing the battle to survive and are consequently failing... This is one of the inevitable consequences of the system of capitalist anarchy that so clearly benefits the billionaire class. ShoulderToShoulder
  • Score: 15

6:26pm Wed 12 Mar 14

Useacarpark.com says...

We had a TCC? Sounds pointless!
We had a TCC? Sounds pointless! Useacarpark.com
  • Score: 15

10:22am Thu 13 Mar 14

ladybird14 says...

its not welcome to Taunton its welcome to GHOST-TOWN its better to go to Exeter so much nicer !!!!!
its not welcome to Taunton its welcome to GHOST-TOWN its better to go to Exeter so much nicer !!!!! ladybird14
  • Score: 7

8:36am Fri 14 Mar 14

GoingGreen says...

Trouble is, Taunton isn't exactly the most pleasant shopping experience when lorries and cars are whistling past your ears.
Trouble is, Taunton isn't exactly the most pleasant shopping experience when lorries and cars are whistling past your ears. GoingGreen
  • Score: 2

9:18am Fri 14 Mar 14

Slow down! says...

Lorries and cars hardly whistle pass seeing as the traffic lights are designed to slow traffic down to a crawl, more likely to get an idiot on a bike tear past you without warning!

If the town centre is pedestinised then that will be the final nail in the coffin for Taunton, a once proud Market Town whos beating heart was ripped out by local councillors with little or no idea on how to make the Town grow, Firepool is a fine example of their achievements!

Well done, what a vision!
Lorries and cars hardly whistle pass seeing as the traffic lights are designed to slow traffic down to a crawl, more likely to get an idiot on a bike tear past you without warning! If the town centre is pedestinised then that will be the final nail in the coffin for Taunton, a once proud Market Town whos beating heart was ripped out by local councillors with little or no idea on how to make the Town grow, Firepool is a fine example of their achievements! Well done, what a vision! Slow down!
  • Score: 9

1:41pm Fri 14 Mar 14

GoingGreen says...

ladybird14 wrote:
its not welcome to Taunton its welcome to GHOST-TOWN its better to go to Exeter so much nicer !!!!!
Primarily pedestrian.
[quote][p][bold]ladybird14[/bold] wrote: its not welcome to Taunton its welcome to GHOST-TOWN its better to go to Exeter so much nicer !!!!![/p][/quote]Primarily pedestrian. GoingGreen
  • Score: 2

3:57pm Fri 14 Mar 14

duckface08 says...

I have said before "why do we need a town centre company or even a town centre manager " when we are asked to vote for a town council to run this town.
I have said before "why do we need a town centre company or even a town centre manager " when we are asked to vote for a town council to run this town. duckface08
  • Score: 15

8:17am Sat 15 Mar 14

Little_Owly says...

Pedestrianised = safer for shoppers and particularly children, more relaxed shopping environment, more browsing - not having to cross a busy road/wait for lights, less town centre pollution, more space for activities, stalls, market traders, seating, trees, flower beds, outside cafe areas. I would love Taunton to be like that.
Pedestrianised = safer for shoppers and particularly children, more relaxed shopping environment, more browsing - not having to cross a busy road/wait for lights, less town centre pollution, more space for activities, stalls, market traders, seating, trees, flower beds, outside cafe areas. I would love Taunton to be like that. Little_Owly
  • Score: 5

1:53pm Sat 15 Mar 14

Useacarpark.com says...

Little_Owly wrote:
Pedestrianised = safer for shoppers and particularly children, more relaxed shopping environment, more browsing - not having to cross a busy road/wait for lights, less town centre pollution, more space for activities, stalls, market traders, seating, trees, flower beds, outside cafe areas. I would love Taunton to be like that.
Agreed, and being a smaller town buses wouldn't need to come through either. When the Christmas fair was on the town was closed from east street to bridge street it was much better, granted there were lots of stalls, but why can't we have a permanent market stall seeing as we produce some of the best food in the country! The council should also incentivise people to open cafés and restaurants with on street eating areas as suggested above. If traffic is so bad going through town as people say, then would anyone actually notice if you couldn't drive through? If you had traffic flowing freely around the town (remove traffic lights) then I can't see pedestrianisation causing. Problem.
[quote][p][bold]Little_Owly[/bold] wrote: Pedestrianised = safer for shoppers and particularly children, more relaxed shopping environment, more browsing - not having to cross a busy road/wait for lights, less town centre pollution, more space for activities, stalls, market traders, seating, trees, flower beds, outside cafe areas. I would love Taunton to be like that.[/p][/quote]Agreed, and being a smaller town buses wouldn't need to come through either. When the Christmas fair was on the town was closed from east street to bridge street it was much better, granted there were lots of stalls, but why can't we have a permanent market stall seeing as we produce some of the best food in the country! The council should also incentivise people to open cafés and restaurants with on street eating areas as suggested above. If traffic is so bad going through town as people say, then would anyone actually notice if you couldn't drive through? If you had traffic flowing freely around the town (remove traffic lights) then I can't see pedestrianisation causing. Problem. Useacarpark.com
  • Score: 6

6:38am Sun 16 Mar 14

GoingGreen says...

Little_Owly wrote:
Pedestrianised = safer for shoppers and particularly children, more relaxed shopping environment, more browsing - not having to cross a busy road/wait for lights, less town centre pollution, more space for activities, stalls, market traders, seating, trees, flower beds, outside cafe areas. I would love Taunton to be like that.
Here here
[quote][p][bold]Little_Owly[/bold] wrote: Pedestrianised = safer for shoppers and particularly children, more relaxed shopping environment, more browsing - not having to cross a busy road/wait for lights, less town centre pollution, more space for activities, stalls, market traders, seating, trees, flower beds, outside cafe areas. I would love Taunton to be like that.[/p][/quote]Here here GoingGreen
  • Score: 6

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