Tackling air pollution: Bee London launches Modern Day milk float and other services for businesses in Bloomsbury, Holborn and St Giles as Mayor of London issues toxic smog alert

18 January 2017: Bee London (formerly inmidtown), supported by Transport for London (TfL), has announced the launch of a range of new services to businesses in the Bloomsbury, Holborn and St Giles areas (known as Midtown) to improve air quality, reduce congestion and support local suppliers – as well as providing a cost-effective solution to businesses that reduces administrative time.  Today, the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has issued a toxic smog alert for next three days in 'public health emergency'.  High levels of air pollution are responsible for over 9,000 premature deaths each year in London alone - a crisis which has prompted the Mayor to double the funding to be spent on air quality. The UK government has been forced to make more ambitious plans to tackle air pollution after meagre first efforts were ruled illegal.

Bee London represents 320 businesses in Midtown and serves their needs across a number of areas with the overarching aim to make the area the destination of choice for businesses. Midtown is one of the fastest growing development areas in Central London and is currently undergoing a major growth burst. With the arrival of Crossrail and the upgrade of Thameslink, Farringdon will be the epicentre of the capital.

In response to this pressing issue of air pollution in London, Bee London is introducing the following three services:

 1.       Daily Essentials delivery: like a modern day milk float, Daily Essentials will be available to the 320 businesses in Midtown, consolidating the delivery of supplies under a trusted London supplier. Currently, without central co-ordination, each business finds their own suppliers and there are separate deliveries. Daily Essentials will provide a cheaper, greener and more reliable services to businesses. This service is up and running.

2.       Personal Deliveries: Currently, 78% of businesses on one busy London street allow employees to receive personal deliveries at work, increasing emissions and congestion on Midtown's roads. London's first personal delivery service will give thousands of local employees the chance to divert their deliveries to one address for consolidation. Parcels will then be delivered to the recipients via environmentally sustainable electric vehicles twice a day to dramatically reduce the number of delivery vehicles on the roads. Employees will enjoy the same standard of service, but environmentally this is a far greener alternative. This service will be launched before the end of February.

3.       Business to business purchasing network: In spring, Bee London will roll out what is essentially a buying club: a local procurement service that details local suppliers to encourage businesses in Midtown to buy locally, rather than procure goods from across London and incur the costs and freight impact associated with transporting them. This local economy of services will enable businesses to support each other.

Commenting on the initiative, Tass Mavrogordato, Chief Executive of Bee London, said:

"It's always been part of our mission to connect business and cement Midtown as a destination of choice. That's why we look for practical solutions to the everyday problems our businesses face. Working alongside TfL and Jones Bros we are launching these exciting new services to help our local community to not only improve air quality and reduce congestion – an issue that all Londoners face and one for which we must do our part –  but to support the local economy and to help businesses save money. Reducing the number of commercial vehicles on our streets will improve the safety of everyone who lives and works in the area and have a real impact on emissions and congestion."

David McNeill, Director of Public Affairs and Stakeholder Engagement of TfL, added:

"We have worked with BeeLondon to support businesses in Bloomsbury, Holborn and St Giles to receive deliveries in a green and efficient way that works for them. This helps business to reduce costs and improve their trading environment – both important factors in maintaining this growing district’s competitiveness, improve air quality and a reduction in congestion. "