Kingston's town centre management team is celebrating after businesses voted overwhelmingly in favour of keeping the company on for another five years.

Kingstonfirst won a third term as the town's Business Improvement District (BID) on Friday - the first BID in the UK to achive such a feat.

Friday's results revealed 81 per cent of business ratepayers voted yes to keeping the group in charge of managing and marketing the town centre following a month-long ballot.

Turn out for the poll was 55 per cent.

Kingstonfirst chief executive Ros Morgan said: "Our vision for the next five years is to make a great town greater.

"I’m delighted that Kingston businesses have so resoundingly shown their support for Kingstonfirst.

"While we have accomplished plenty already, we’re excited to do much more. Over the next five years we will be investing £8.27 million to deliver further positive changes.

"With the successful BID renewal, the opening of the renovated ancient marketplace and the Riverside Edge development, 2014 is shaping to be a fantastic year for Kingston."

Banquet Records manager Jon Tolley was one of the traders who voted in favour of Kingstonfirst.

Surrey Comet:

Kingstonfirst won a third term with 81 per cent of the vote. Turnout was 55 per cent

He said: "For independent stores, having a BID is a no brainer.

"We get more out of Kingstonfirst than we put in. But it’s not just about saving money – it’s an ethic. It’s not a compromise for indies to be in conversation with corporates. It’s not a contrast for a socialist to be a businessman.

"In fact, Kingstonfirst ties everyone together and is exactly about working together."

Greg Hughes, Kingstonfirst chairman and managing director of Bentalls department store, said: "The renewal of Kingston’s BID is a significant and positive milestone, not only for the town but for the UK as Kingstonfirst goes into its third term leading the way for others to follow.

"This will enable Kingston to build on the excellent work it has been doing to deliver a more innovative, commercial and bespoke approach to shaping an even greater future."

Kingstonfirst’s third term begins on January 1, 2015 and will run until December 31, 2019.