7.45am: After driving my car to Sixfields, I get on the University park and ride bus to take me into Northampton’s thriving town centre.
8.15am: My shift doesn’t start until 8:45am today so I quickly visit an independent cafe for a coffee and a bacon roll. There are many lovely places to choose from so I tend to select a different one every day. Whilst I am there I check in with the staff to make sure they are all okay and we chat about using the BID social distancing vinyl to help them manage footfall around their shop.
8:45am: My day starts by preparing my own daily plan to discuss with the BID Manager. This allows me to organise my day ahead and plan which businesses and parts of the town I will visit throughout the day.
9.15am: Walking along Abington Street and around Market Square is my first task of the day. Doing my first daily walk around is great as I get to say good morning to all the stall holders and give a friendly wave to the town’s retailers and other business owners.
9:45am: By wearing a visible Northampton BID uniform and a body worn video it’s never long before a member of the public asks me for assistance. I direct an elderly lady to All Saints Church and help a lost first year student successfully get back to the University of Northampton’s Waterside Campus.
10:30am: On my walk back from the campus, I visit a couple of retailers on Gold Street to get an insight to how their businesses are getting on.
11:15am: Meeting with businesses to discuss the innovative ways the BID team are attracting visitors to the town centre.
12 noon: Lunchtime. The town is really busy and I get permission from a couple walking past me to take some photos on my phone to use on the BID’s social media accounts to show people enjoying the town on this lovely sunny day. We have really active Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram accounts.
1pm: My afternoon begins by dropping into a new business which has just opened its doors. I introduce myself to the owners and explain that I’m always around to support them. We have a chat about the benefits of being located in a Business Improvement District and some of the great initiatives that they can get involved in. Always good to see new places opening up in town.
2pm: I have planned some visits to businesses to tell them about our forthcoming event ‘The Dinosaurs are coming to Northampton Town Centre on 24 July – everyone is really pleased that the BID is staging a free family friendly event to help attract footfall back into the town
3pm: During my walk, I get a call from the manager at a national retailer telling me she is concerned about a disruptive street drinker who has set up camp next to the shop. I politely direct him to the Hope Centre on Campbell Street to ensure he gets the support he needs. I also explain to the businesses how this can be logged on the NTARS App (Northampton Town Antisocial Behaviors Reporting Scheme). By businesses working together we can help share information so that vulnerable people may get the support they need. I also radio this through via the town radio scheme, which links into CCTV .
4pm: I continue to walk around the town and welcome all the businesses opening up for the evening. Whilst walking I chat to shoppers to find out their views on the town’s retail facilities. They are really pleased with the different range of shops and the friendly staff who work in them.
5.15pm: Time to catch the University bus back to my car and head home before coming back to the town later with my family for a lovely evening meal we are spoilt for choice as there is such a great variety of restaurants.