Town bids for UK Best High Street title

The street team in Ballymena.
The street team in Ballymena.

Ballymena is bidding for the crown of best UK High Street.

Traders, business leaders, community champions and shoppers in the town recently welcomed a visiting ‘Street Team’ who called to explore, experience and savour the town’s fantastic mix of independent shops, high street giants, cafes, bars and restaurants.

The awards celebrate local achievements on our high streets and help support the communities in which we live and work. They also recognise those individual businesses and people who are playing a leading role in making high streets so special.

Applications are welcome from local authorities, BIDs and other community groups throughout NI, England, Scotland and Wales. However, entries close at midnight on August 22 - email: greatbritishhighstreet@communities.gsi.gov.uk. To enter your high street you will need to be a representative of a Business Improvement District, local authority, Parish Council, town team, coastal community team, Town Centre Partnership, Community Interest Company, Chamber of Commerce, or Trading Association.

High streets are eligible to win up to £10k for their community, plus the opportunity for their local businesses and consumers to participate in a Visa Spend & Win Competition. Winners will be chosen from each of the UK home nations, across two categories: Champion High Street and Rising Star High Street.

An overall High Street of the Year in Great Britain and Northern Ireland will also be named. Shortlisted finalists will be invited to an awards ceremony in London in November.