SKIPTON Business Improvement District (BID) is looking for a new leader after its current chair decided to step down after 15 years.

The business funded BID, which in October received the backing of the town's levy payers for a fourth time, is looking for a new chair to replace Andrew Mear from the start of April this year, at the start of the next five year term.

Businessman and property owner, Mr Mear, owner of Skipton's High Corn Mill, has been involved with the BID since it started more than 15 years ago and was instrumental in setting it up.

He said: “I have thoroughly enjoyed my time as chair of Skipton BID; the positive impact the BID has had over the last 15 years has been fantastic. Now the BID has been successful for a fourth term and another five years, I believe it is time I stepped down handed the role to someone who is equally committed to the town but has more time to invest."

The voluntary position, says the organisation, is an opportunity for someone who is passionate about Skipton and its economy and who has the experience and the ability to support businesses to ensure the town continues to thrive.

The BID board is currently made up of nine voluntary directors representing the different industry sectors that pay the BID levy - 1.5 per cent of each business's rateable value.

Directors include Louise Close, chief officer of Skipton Town Council; Rebecca Elsworth, Elsworth Kitchen; Julian Hotchkiss, Benjamin's Opticians; Anita Lall, Craven College, and Fred Maier, Kooky Nightclub. BID manager is Sarah Howsen. 

Potential BID chairs will preferably live in the area and have experience of working in or around Skipton. They need to be retired, or semi-retired, from a corporate background. To find out more, and to apply, go to:

Applications close on Sunday, February 18.