ATCM Public Policy

Thought Leadership:

Creating innovative and successful policies that will enable towns and cities to achieve their full economic and social potential.


Testing new ideas and analysing statistical evidence to feed new policies and ensure our status as a thought leader in the field.


Presenting our innovative policies, and the voice of our members and the industry to Government at all levels across the UK and Ireland in a strong, tenacious and coherent way.

Nearly every area of UK public policy carries a meaningful impact on our town centres. The planning framework can dictate the location of millions of pounds retail and leisure development. The taxation system can encourage or discourage growth, employment and the health of various sectors of industry. And community empowerment can shape how socially engaged the High Street’s users are. ATCM has long recognised this, which is why we understand that vibrant town centres cannot emerge on their own accord. Bottom-up, local and organic management schemes are a large piece of the jigsaw, but this needs to be complimented by political leadership at the highest levels, co-ordinating the disparate elements of public policy. 

ATCM, with the support of a powerful membership network and an objective, multi-sector perspective, has influenced public policy for over 20 years. Our achievements include shaping the planning principle of ‘Town Centres First’, piloting the very first UK BIDs, influencing the Portas Review, co-ordinating cross-party parliamentary town centre interest groups and leading the calls for the first ever Minister for Town Centres.

We continue to shape public policy across the UK, driven by the aim of creating place-based policy-making that delivers genuinely sustainable economic growth and vibrant communities.