Managing a safer trading environment for BID levy payers

One of Sheffield BID’s priorities is to provide a safer trading environment for businesses and their employees, as well as those who visit the city centre

We are committed to working in partnership to achieve these objectives

There is an established multi-agency Business Crime Reduction Partnership (BCRP) in place of which Sheffield BID is a member.

The BCRP’s CCRAC radio network has proven to be a valuable and successful mechanism for preventing crime and shoplifting. Funding through the BID has ensured the network is now fully digital to the benefit of our members who use it.

Through the BCRP we also contribute to membership of NBCS (National Business Crime Solutions) which enables effective data sharing between different agencies to help reduce crime and risks.

We have several teams on the street

Sheffield BID funds a dedicated Police Sergeant to help us address issues such as street begging, anti-social behaviour and retail crime. This additional funding provides access to a first-line Police supervisor who can facilitate the tasking of police officers and PCSOs to support BID area priorities.

Our BID sergeant works closely with the local neighbourhood police team and British Transport Police to share intelligence and support longer term problem solving. It also means that Sheffield BID can quickly escalate recurring problems with South Yorkshire Police.

And we operate our own street concierge City Hosts service (known as the BID Buddies). The Buddies’ on-street presence, assistance and advice adds to the safety and friendliness of the BID area all year round.

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, we introduced a new team of BID security guards to help protect BID levy payers who have closed temporarily. During the Coronavirus pandemic, our mobile guarding team will operate in two vehicles from midnight to 6.00am, seven days a week. The team will use the city centre radio network to maintain direct communication with the Council's CCTV control room if police assistance is required.

We support best practice in place management

Best Bar None

Our Police Sergeant works closely with businesses in the night-time economy to support Best Bar None, a government scheme which aims to promote safe and responsible licencing practices in city centre venues.

Purple Flag

Sheffield BID, South Yorkshire Police and Sheffield City Council work with local businesses to maintain the city centre’s Purple Flag status, a national accreditation recognising standards of excellence in managing the evening and night-time economy.

We encourage giving to charities 

Homelessness, rough sleeping and begging are becoming increasingly prevalent issues to manage in the city centre. The BID supports the Help Us Help campaign, which aims to raise awareness of support services available in the city and help people make informed decisions about how to help vulnerable people with complex needs.

We work closely with social enterprises that assist people who are homeless

In partnership with Just Works, part of the Cathedral Archer Project, we’ve created regular paid employment through our Street Rangers initiative, for former rough sleepers (improving their employability options and their quality of life).

We assist businesses affected by vagrancy

Through our partnership with South Yorkshire Police, we provide a discretionary rough sleeper patrol to check on the welfare of individuals and limit the impact of vagrancy to retailers opening for business. Our Street Rangers provide a follow-on cleansing and sanitation service, checking locations in the city which are regularly subject to rough sleeper detritus and hazardous waste.

We bring businesses and partners together to seek solutions to specific issues

We’ve provided leadership to multi-agency partnership to tackle the growing number of users of the substance known as Spice, chairing a series of meetings involving the Council’s Drug & Alcohol team, South Yorkshire Police and local businesses.

We help build business resilience

Our series of training courses includes conflict management and regular anti-terror and major-incident training through Project Argus and Project Griffin, involving more than 300 businesses to date. The sessions help people to understand the threat from terrorism and think about security measures that can be taken to protect businesses and organisations.

We provide a range of innovative security measures to businesses

These include high-tech mobile cameras to monitor known hot spots and deter anti-social behaviours.

Body-worn cameras are loaned to retail, leisure and hospitality businesses to enhance customer security. Knife wands have also been distributed to late bars and clubs.

SmartWater® – a high-tech traceable liquid issued to selected night-time premises to who undergo training to become an accredited SmartWater venue. Used as a deterrent, trained staff can tag those involved in serious offences such as assaults.

Help and advice on security measures to prevent criminal damage to business premises is also available through a Crime Prevention Officer from South Yorkshire Police.

Several more initiatives support our Safer city objective

The installation of 13 outdoor defibrillators through the PulsePoints initiative provides access to life saving equipment 24-7.

Our team removes graffiti vandalism on commercial property and implements graffiti prevention measures.

Bag-a-tagger is a new initiative that will be launched in partnership with Crime Stoppers to reduce graffiti vandalism.

Looking to the future

As we look ahead to the next five years, there are opportunities to enhance the city’s partnership-led approach to crime prevention even further.

Consultation for a renewal ballot identified that support for security and environmental issues remains a top priority for businesses. This will result in further priorities around a Safe, Clean & Maintained city centre receiving a greater share of the BID’s investment.

As well as continuing with many of our existing services and projects, new commitments will include regular open briefings around city centre security issues and live updates around protests, major events and roadworks when they impact businesses.

We will also work with partners to identify solutions for designing out crime and vulnerabilities which create a “broken window” effect and which encourage further anti-social behaviours.