East Side Traders (BEST) is an innovative inner-city project that seeks to
develop a vibrant and thriving business community in the Easton,
Ashley and Lawrence Hill areas of Bristol.
The organisation was set up in April
1999 by a partnership of local traders, Bristol Area Community Enterprise Network (BACEN), Business in the Community and Bristol City Council.
BEST's basic aims have been to:
- enable small and medium
sized businesses in Bristol's inner-city to prosper and grow
- support more people
in establishing successful small businesses in the area,
- promote and strengthen
partnerships between large and small private businesses, Bristol
City Council and other public bodies, the voluntary sector and wider
community, enabling these partnerships to work better together
to improve the local community.
Work carried out to date includes:
- providing a signposting service to new and established businesses, enabling them to access business advice and support services
- establishment of influential local traders associations in both Easton and Ashley
- organised tailor-made training courses and seminars to meet the needs of small business people
- individual visits to local businesses in order to assess their sucesses and needs
- compiled a comprehensive local business directory
- working in partnership with Bristol City Council departments and local agencies looking at area-wide strategies
- working with Business in the Community and large companies, including IKEA, NatWest, Barclays and Royal Sun Alliance, to broker better community investment programmes
- establishing a Business Partnership Programme, where participants from large businesses are partnered with local business people in an exchange of skills and experience
- developing a comprehensive publicity plan to raise the profile of the area - work with the Tourist Board has resulted in extension of the 'tourist map' to include the inner-city for the first time
- working with local businesses and community groups to organise public celebrations of cultural festivals
- the establishment of local street markets - an initial site has been identified in St Paul's
- contribution to further physical enhancements through Bristol City Council's shop-front improvement programme.
It is clear that the sucess of small businesses plays a key role in the regeneration of inner-city areas and BEST's activities have made a significant impact in addressing this issue. In its first year of existence this dynamic organisation had continually developed and adapted in response to the needs and demands of the area. So much has been achieved since the start of the project and many more plans and ideas are waiting to be realised.
"Helping local business grow"
For more information contact
Halina Pasiecznik, Project Manager:
Tel: 0117 916 6421
Fax: 0117 916 6422
Bristol East Side Traders
Other Projects Being Funded
Bristol URBAN Programme