About

Ymlaen Llanelli is Llanelli’s Business Improvement District (BID), working to build a more vibrant town centre.

In November 2015, businesses in Llanelli town centre established a business-led and -funded mechanism known as a Business Improvement District (BID). This BID helps to improve Llanelli as a place to work, live and visit by delivering a targeted programme of services.

We regularly hold free events in the town centre, from huge annual festivals to community street parties, open-air cinemas and children’s events. These events help reconnect local people with their town centre, while increasing footfall and providing businesses with the exposure to strengthen their customer base.

Our festivals have become some of the most highly-anticipated events in the Llanelli calendar, including Llanelli 80s Festival, Llanelli Vintage Festival, and our biggest event, Llanelli Food and Drink Festival. Each one draws in thousands of people and helps showcase everything that the town has to offer.

As well as our events, we create and invest in initiatives that improve access and enhance the town centre experience. Current initiatives include:

  • A number of free parking days in council car parks throughout the year, as well as £1 parking in Murray Street multi-storey on Saturdays.
  • Work with Dyfed Powys Police to alleviate some of the issues in the centre. We now have a dedicated town centre police team, including a centre officer who patrols the streets daily.
  • Installation of hanging flower baskets and colourful window vinyls designed by local children throughout the high street.

As a BID we support local incentives and community projects that give people opportunities to learn new skills and showcase their work. We frequently collaborate with local organisations such as Fusion, PeopleSpeakUp and many more, to provide volunteer opportunities. funding for projects and pitch spaces at events.

If you’d like to find out more about what we do, please contact us here.

What is a BID?

A Business Improvement District is formed following consultation and a ballot in which businesses vote on a BID proposal or business plan for the area.

If a ballot is successful, it is then managed and operated by a BID Company – a non-profit company run by and for its members – and is funded through the BID levy, which is a small percentage of a business’ rateable value.

The improvements made by a BID are determined by businesses themselves and are additional to services provided by the local authority. They can include core services such as additional cleansing and security or more wide-ranging projects such as business support, improved infrastructure, visitor services, area branding, promotions and cultural activities.

How is Ymlaen Llanelli funded – and where is it spent?

Ymlaen Llanelli is funded by a 1.25% levy on the rateable value of hereditaments (business units) within the defined BID boundary that have a rateable value of £6,000 or more, as of the notice of ballot date (29th October 2015).

Businesses with a rateable value below the threshold are exempt from paying the levy. Ratepayers that receive mandatory relief from business rates and are office-based have their BID levy discounted at the same rate. This discount does not apply to business units that receive mandatory relief which are retail.

This levy raises a collective pot of £500,000 that is invested in the town centre over the BID’s five-year term.

The BID’s services are above and beyond what the Local Authority and Town Council currently provide for the town centre. To ensure that the services the BID provides are additional to what’s already delivered, the BID has a baseline agreement with the local authorities which details the services they currently deliver. BID funds are only for projects in addition to those delivered by the local councils and can only be spent to improve the area in which they are raised – Ymlaen Llanelli only spends here in Llanelli town centre.

How is the BID levy collected?

The BID levy is collected on an annual basis. We commission the local authority to collect the levy on our behalf as a separate bill. The levy is amended on an annual basis in line with inflation.

Ymlaen Llanelli is a company limited by guarantee. The BID levy is mandatory for all eligible hereditaments (those with over £6,000 rateable value) within the BID area. This includes those owned by the local authorities and other public bodies.

How is the BID governed?

Ymlaen Llanelli was established in 2015 after a successful BID ballot. It is an independent, not-for profit company. It is a transparent body open to scrutiny from its levy payers and the community in which it operates, with regularly updated information about income and expenditure available to all members of the BID.

Ymlaen Llanelli is led by the private sector – a board of directors who represent a cross-section of businesses in Llanelli town centre, and theme groups also drawn from local businesses, who meet to oversee specific projects in the programme’s four main strands. A part-time BID manager and a part-time BID assistant deliver the programme, overseen by the board.

An evaluation framework is used to measure performance, using data such as crime statistics and footfall figures, visitor and business surveys.

How long does the BID last?

The BID runs for a term of five years, ensuring guaranteed investment in Llanelli town centre until 2021. If businesses want the BID to continue beyond 2021 they will make a decision through a renewal ballot in late 2020.

How does the BID ballot work?

The BID can only be re-established after a successful ballot vote of eligible businesses in Llanelli.

In October 2020, all eligible businesses within the BID boundary will receive a ballot paper in the post at the ratepayer’s address. Ballot papers must be returned within a month.

To be re-established, the ballot must pass on two counts: a simple majority of those voting must be in favour and their votes must represent more than 50% of the total rateable value of the properties that vote.

The BID was established in November 2015 following a successful ballot that adhered to the same rules.

Mandy Jenkins

BID Manager

Jade Evans

Marketing and Events Assistant

Board members

Lesley Richards (Chair)

Nationwide Manager

Andrew Stephens (Vice Chair)

Llanelli Chamber of Commerce

Matthew Harvey

Specsaver (Director)

Paul Oram

Llanelli Chamber of Trade

Cllr Emlyn Dole

Leader of Carmarthenshire County Council

Adrian Davies

Davies Craddock

Owain Glenister

Y Lle

Paul Carter

Llanelly House

Lee Edmunds

Evans and Powells Solicitors

Tony Edwards

Wilko (Manager)

Martin Blackwell

The Works (Manager)

Our board members are always happy to discuss the BID if you would like to know more.