Cheltenham Business Improvement District (BID) has worked with The Cheltenham Trust and Cheltenham Borough Council’s, No Child Left Behind campaign on a free Hidden Cheltenham Summer trail for through-out the Summer holiday.

A year of action started in January 2019 designed with partners to address the main areas of children in poverty. Educational, fun and supportive events, activities and campaigns will engage and involve young people and offer them the confidence to get support if they need it.  Follow them on Facebook and Twitter @NCLBchelt.

The Hidden Cheltenham Summer Trail is following in the footsteps of our successful Easter trail that took place this April and saw more than 300 families successfully complete the trail.

Antonia Burgess posted on the Facebook group ‘Entertaining the kids on a budget – Gloucestershire ‘: “The Easter egg hunt that starts at The Wilson is fab! Me and little boy had such a lovely time walking around today and when you stop at Hollywood Bowling you get given a voucher that entitles a child to a free bowl. Everyone was so lovely at each stop and then when you completed the trail and have the word you go back to The Wilson and the children get an egg…all for free!! Brace yourself for a good walk as it’s a bit of trek but that only added to the trail and my little boy was so tired after it that bedtime was an absolute breeze!”

The Summer trail will start on Wednesday July 17 and will run from 9am-5pm Monday to Saturday until Monday September 2. The event will be part of the No Child Left Behind free activities calendar that will be sent to every child enrolled at a Primary School in Cheltenham. See event information

Sign-up via to receive a digital map and exclusive clues the day before or just turn up and pick up a map and instructions from The Wilson Art Gallery to start your tasks.

The trail encourages families to use observation skills, beginner’s numeracy skills, physical exercise and team work to complete the trail. A goodie bag will be given to each child that completes the trail.

Hollywood Bowl, the UK’s largest 10-pin bowling company, opened their Cheltenham branch in November 2014. Based at The Brewery Quarter, they are a true family attraction providing good value entertainment, food and drink for people of all ages and abilities.

The family ethic extends beyond the customer experience.  The team at Hollywood Bowl Cheltenham are always keen to support the local business community, not just in The Brewery Quarter but across the town. 

When The BID approached Dean Botham, the venue’s manager, to see if they would be willing to be one of the businesses on the Hidden Cheltenham Easter Trail, he immediately agreed and offered to give every child collecting a clue, a free game.  We asked if they would like to be part of the summer trail and Dean said: “We would love to get involved. The Easter treasure hunt was great fun!”

For the first time we invited all bars, pubs, clubs and restaurants to be part of Cheltenham Cocktail Week.  Hollywood Bowl offered three different £6 cocktails to customers and were very helpful in promoting their event and sharing social media posts for all the participating venues.

Demelsa Coleman, Marketing Manager at The Brewery Quarter said: “I love working with the Hollywood Bowl team.  They’re always super keen to get involved in any of The Brewery Quarter’s activity, from the Jazz Festival to our Summer Jam, Easter Treasure Hunt and playing host to various events.”

The BID Ambassadors enjoy visiting the team at Hollywood Bowl because they are always made to feel welcome and the team are genuinely interested in hearing about what is happening around Cheltenham.

As BID Business of the month, Hollywood Bowl will have a representative speaker at the July Cheltenham Business Forum’s BIG Breakfast.  We will highlight Hollywood Bowl across our social media channels, and they will feature on the home page of our website.

Matt Rudman is the owner of Cheltenham Martial Arts which has been on Winchcombe Street since April 2018. 

Formerly an electrical engineer, Matt’s ultimate goal was to teach martial arts and equip people with the self-confidence to develop personally. He began teaching for a Gloucester-based martial arts school and built up the Cheltenham branch, which he bought as a business in 2013.  Since then, he has rebranded it and grown it into the successful entity it is today.

Matt has a passion for helping people to build their confidence through personal development. In his experience, martial arts gives people the ability to accomplish goals they never thought they could.  He has developed Mindset Explosion; a series of live interviews with other businesses, focusing on personal development.  You can find them on You Tube.

Matt believes that it’s important for businesses to work collectively to ensure that the local commercial community thrives.  “If we work together, we can grow together,” says Matt.  He wanted to become a BID Board Director because he wants his work to have a lasting impact and thinks it’s particularly important for small businesses to get the support they need.

When it comes to BID activities, Matt realises the importance of being inclusive and says events like the Christmas lights switch on and Light Up Cheltenham all help to build a better community.  He said: “Although it’s not just about footfall, I did like seeing the streets crowded when the new Christmas lights were switched on.”

Cheltenham Borough Council and Gloucestershire County Council are planning a further substantial investment on High Street. The estimated £1.8m project will see the Strand and the pedestrianised section of Cambray Place resurfaced.

The uneven paving and replacing tarmac will go and a new drainage system will be installed.  The aim is to make this area a more attractive destination and encourage greater linkage with the rest of High Street, with initial work due to start in the autumn.

Funding from the European Regional Development Fund will also be used to add trees and planting. The improvements will link directly with those made last year when £1 million was invested into the stretch of High Street between Rodney Road and Cambray Place.

Improvement to our town’s public realm is a priority for the BID and we are supporting the project by representing the interests of business in a stakeholder group, which also includes representatives from Sainsbury’s and The Union Project.

Cheltenham Borough Council already has a project team in place and has commissioned Willmott Dixon, an independent construction and property services company, to undertake an initial study into the works which will draw on the outline designs already in place to confirm the phasing plan, programme and budget. As with the first phase, it will be a priority to keep access to all frontages open and to minimise disruption.

As plans develop, they will be shared with the local businesses.  Thought is already being given to the potential impact the work will have and businesses operating in the vicinity have been involved with initial consultations and will be contacted again soon to identify any issues and explore possible solutions.

The project team will also be continuing its work with businesses to protect the atmosphere and physical appearance of the town centre by minimising vehicle use for deliveries in pedestrian areas at sensitive times. Look out for more information in future newsletters.

Cheltenham Borough Council is asking businesses to have their say on the way street trading licences are issued.  

The current policy is under review and aims to:

  1. prevent the obstruction of the streets by street trading activities;
  2. sustain established shopkeepers in the town;
  3. maintain the quality of the townscape and add value to the town; and
  4. encourage inward investment.

The policy specifies locations around the town that have been deemed appropriate for street trading. The policy has revised these locations taking into account the changing nature of the public realm and retail offer.

The changes also include revisions to the appearance of the stalls or vehicles so that the council will generally not permit trading units where the unit fully, or substantially, blocks lines of sight to established retailers in the vicinity. Any street trading operation that negatively impacts public access by walking, cycling or public transport will not be encouraged.

All BID Businesses are being encouraged to give their feedback on the policy, and full details can be found at

News of the benefits of being a BID business is spreading and we have had several businesses join the BID as voluntary members.

We’d like to welcome The Beehive, Badlands Records, The Logical Utilities Company, Showcase and Cocoa Couture to the BID community.

The Beehive, a vibrant, friendly pub serving classic pub food and great Sunday roasts, is based in Montpellier. They hold events throughout the summer and are rated one of the top 6 real ale pubs in Cheltenham.

Badlands Records is an independent music store founded in 1986 by avid music fans Philip and Steven Jump. They specialise in classic and indie rock and Bruce Springsteen and Bob Dylan releases and have a huge array of cds, vinyl, boxsets, magazines, merchandise and posters of every genre.

Founded in 2009, The Logical Utilities Company has become the UK market leader in energy consulting and support services. They are driven by sharing in this success and are working with the BID to help businesses improve their bottom line through a transparent approach to utility supply.

Established in 1992 by John and Heather Pannett – Showcase is a family business run by enthusiastic people who have combined their love of Dance, Costume and Theatre to create a Dancewear and Fancy Dress department.

British bridal boutique Cocoa Couture was established in 1970 with an ethos is that every bride should feel beautiful, happy, comfortable and above all confident on her special day. Cara Wagstaff’s expert skills and vision have seen the creation of some of the most beautiful dresses worldwide. Every dress is lovingly hand crafted by their dedicated team of experts in their Cheltenham Atelier.

Voluntary members pay the same levy as non-voluntary members and are entitled to all the same benefits, such as the discounted bus travel, free social media training, discounted attendance at seminars etc. 

As voluntary members, these businesses are not able to have a representative on the BID board and may not vote at an Annual General Meeting.