Southside District BID has named its new Chair as Southside business owner and Pride Festival director, Lawrence Barton, who will oversee the BID’s third term, which was secured following a record voter turnout and a 94% approval rate.
With multiple businesses residing in the district, including the iconic Nightingale club, Lawrence has been an integral part of Southside BID, working with the wider team as a board director for the last decade. Lawrence will take over the role from James Wong, who has held the role of Chair since 2018. James will continue to support Southside BID as a board director.
Established in 2011, Southside BID works tirelessly to support businesses across Birmingham’s most vibrant and unique district, making it a safer, cleaner and more welcoming destination. As Chair of the BID, this will continue to be a core focus for Lawrence throughout the next term.
Lawrence said: “I’m incredibly proud to step up to the role of Chair for Southside BID, the next few months are certainly going to be challenging as the district starts to reopen, following nearly a year of closure. My key focus is to continue in the BID’s lobbying efforts, shining a light on our businesses which have been devastated by the pandemic and ensuring that we are delivering the vital support they need to recover.
“Southside District is such a unique and dynamic part of the city and we want there to be a connected vision for everyone who calls the area home, creating an inclusive and accessible area for everyone to enjoy. We will continue to work closely with stakeholders from across the city to secure Southside’s place as a destination that is welcoming to all.
“I would like to give my sincere thanks to James Wong for his total dedication to Southside District BID. He has worked tirelessly throughout the pandemic to support businesses in the area and drive our successful reballot, whilst also doing so much for local communities and the NHS through his own business. They are big shoes to fill, and I’m delighted that he will continue to serve as a board member, to ensure we can continue to build on the successes to date.”
Southside District Manager, Julia Robinson, says: “Lawrence has played such an important role in the BID over the last decade, he was the natural choice to become our Chair. We have exciting plans for the area that we will implement over our third term, with the Hippodrome Square redevelopment set to start soon, plus the arrival of the Commonwealth Games next year, which will really help to drive awareness around this vibrant part of the city. We feel that Lawrence is perfectly placed to help us accomplish all of our ambitions and more.
“The BID would also like to thank James for all of his incredible work as our Chair, his lobbying efforts and dedication to the district led to us securing our third term with a record approval rating and voter turnout, securing 20% more votes than our previous ballot, which is an incredible achievement. So thank you James!”