TWO new ambassadors employed by the Blackburn Business Improvement District have started their daily patrols of the town centre with a focus on supporting a business plan to make the town feel safer and more secure for visitors and staff working in the area.
From directing visitors to shops and landmarks to dealing with security issues, the ambassadors have already been tackling low level anti-social behaviour including littering, vandalism and fly-tipping highlighted by the traders.
Ambassadors Tracey O’Keeffe and Ashley Richardson will also be used to distribute communication materials for the BID and be a first point of contact for traders to raise any concerns or ideas that they may have.
Wearing a royal blue uniform embroidered with the BID logo, the ambassadors will patrol the BID area from Sudell Cross to Townsmoor for an initial 12-month period keeping detailed records of all incidents they deal with.
The new roles span a 7 day a week rota and have been made possible with funding from the Blackburn Business Improvement District. Manager of the Blackburn BID, Harriet Roberts explained that the team have been recruited by Castlegate Security in Lancaster where the Lancaster BID have a similar scheme.
It’s hoped that they will help to enhance some of the BID’s key objectives which include creating a more attractive, safer secure and welcoming town centre for the people of Blackburn. She said: “Our approachable and knowledgeable ambassadors, will provide a reassuring presence. They are working closely with the town centre police and other crime safety partnership agencies. As well as enhancing security, they will offer advice and assistance to visitors who need it.
“The team will be in radio contact with town centre security and the police which in turn helps the BID cooperate effectively with key partners in the town.
“Other BIDs have successfully used ambassadors for multi-purpose roles and we believe their presence will improve the streets of Blackburn.”
The town centre ambassadors were among a number of initiatives planned by the Blackburn BID (Business Improvement District) for the year, revealed in its annual report and business plan.