Chichester BID launches new campaign ahead of city centre's reopening
A new Raising The Curtain on Chichester campaign has been launched in preparation for the reopening of the city centre.
All the city’s non-essential retailers, hospitality and leisure businesses can re-open, with restrictions, on April 12.
The Chichester Business Improvement District (BID) said it has been busy preparing a new campaign to ‘Raise The Curtain’ on the city centre and support BID Levy Payers (BLPs) to get back to business next month.
Helen Marshall, vice chairman and CEO of Chichester BID, said the 'excitement is palpable', adding: "Whilst Chichester city centre has remained open throughout this lockdown for essential retail, we look forward to welcoming businesses and the general public back into the city."
To mark the much-anticipated reopening following lockdown, the city will be decorated with ‘Love Local’ bunting to create a 'colourful, fun and welcoming' atmosphere for visitors venturing back into the city centre.
New discovery trails are also being developed for visitors to explore using the free downloadable app LoyalFree. Trails include an exploration of Chichester street art, a Chichester culture and heritage trail and a guide to the city’s green spaces and alfresco dining options.
Ms Marshall added: “Act I of our Raising the Curtain on Chichester campaign will focus on reminding the public of everything Chichester has to offer from its rich culture and heritage to its eclectic mix of high street and indie retail and personal wellbeing experiences.
"Not forgetting the vibrant art scene, café culture and stunning green spaces we have here.
“We’ve all spent a lot of time exploring and enjoying the stunning scenery outside of our city walls during our lockdown daily exercise, now it’s time for us to celebrate and rediscover Chichester city centre and support all the businesses and sectors in the city that have been hit so hard by having to keep their doors closed for so long.”
To support BID levy payers in 'creating their own excitement and buzz' across their marketing channels, Chichester BID will also put on a free Back to Business Social Media Power Hour.
The project will be in collaboration with The Collective SC, a local community that 'helps small business owners to flourish'.
Chichester BLPs will have the opportunity to spend time with four local social media experts to gain ideas, inspiration and tips on how to 'crank up their social media presence' and encourage people to shop and spend with them.
Debbie Ford of The Chichester Social, Claire Antil of Little Olive Social, Rachel Markie of Mari Media and Scarlett Burgon of Luna + Lion are the four experts involved in the session.
Ms Ford, said: “I'm a Chichester superfan and always work hard to do what I can to help business owners grow and thrive.
"At The Collective, helping and supporting one another comes as second nature, so collaborating with Chichester BID to offer this Power Hour session felt like a call of duty. There is a bright future ahead and collaboration and support will be key to growth within our city centre.”
Ms Marshall said she is one of a number of new faces at Chichester BID, adding: "We are working hard behind the scenes to ensure we have excellent communication channels established with our BLPs so that we can share, listen and support them through this reopening transition stage and towards a thrilling final act in June when, hopefully, all limits on social contact can be removed and we can reveal exciting events and activities we have in the pipeline to celebrate this important milestone.”
For members of the public unable to visit the city centre in person, Chichester BID has a business directory on its website with details of all the offerings still available from businesses.
More than 146 city businesses also participate in the Chichester Gift Card scheme, which is available to purchase online and spend in participating stores.