Joint statement from IPM, ATCM and The BID Foundation


Senior executives representing the Association of Town Centre Management (ATCM), The BID Foundation (TBF) and the Institute of Place Management (IPM) agreed yesterday to develop a joint, collaborative offer that will better serve the needs of UK place management practitioners and policy makers.

The place management sector has changed significantly over the past 10 years, with the introduction of new delivery organisations, such as Business Improvement Districts, as well as large-scale structural changes in retail and the global finance and property markets. As high streets again make headlines, those managing centres need clear and focused support.

"Helping our town and city centres adapt means we have to adapt too, as membership organisations" said Leigh Brown, Chair of the Association of Town and City Management and City Centre Manager for Perth. "We encourage town and city centre stakeholders to collaborate and now we are doing the same. We have agreed we can better serve our members and the industry as a whole with a clearly structured and defined offer that draws on the strengths of all three organisations. ", added Professor Cathy Parker, Chair of the Institute of Place Management.

The meeting was chaired by Stefan Gurney, Executive Director of Norwich BID as well as Chair of the ATCM Advisory Council and Vice-Chair of The BID Foundation. "The most important outcome of today was agreeing how we can identify a more joined up offer for the UK place management sector, which represents better value for money" said Stefan. "This will include specialist provision for Business Improvement Districts as well as more general support across a range of issues that impact on all place management organisations" he added.

The three organisations broadly agreed that ATCM will focus on the practical issues, best practice and policy common to all town centres, The BID Foundation will focus on excellence in, and representation of, the BID industry, and IPM will support both organisations with academic insight, as well as supporting the professional development of practitioners. Next steps include identifying the suite of products and services the three organisations collectively provide, agreeing what their respective memberships want them to collaborate on and, finally, establishing how they can develop an integrated offer that will benefit the sector. The group will be meeting again in May, with a view to making a final announcement in June.




Meeting Attendees

Stefan Gurney (Meeting Chair) - TBF Vice-Chair / Chair of the ATCM Advisory Council and CEO, Norwich BID

Leigh Brown - Chair of the ATCM Board of Directors and City Centre Manager, Perth & Kinross Council

Andrew Cooper - Chair TBF and CEO Leeds BID

Richard Guiney - ATCM Treasurer and CEO Dublin City BID

Ojay McDonald - Acting CEO, ATCM

Cathy Parker - IPM Chair

Simon Quin - IPM Director and Acting BIDs lead

Emma Thornton - ATCM Vice-Chair, Head of Visit Cambridge


About ATCM

ATCM is a not-for-profit membership organisation established in 1991, the largest dedicated to promoting the vitality and viability of urban centres across the UK and the Republic of Ireland. This includes nearly 500 practitioners and partnerships. ATCM’s membership is diverse, consisting of a mix of publicly funded town centre managers, BIDs, Community Interest Companies, town centre businesses, universities and more. Despite being a small organisation in size, its remit and achievements have been significant; including the creation of the post of Minister for Town Centres within the UK Government, introducing BIDs to the UK, coordinating parliament’s response to the Portas Review and raising awareness of the need for reform the business rates system.


About The BID Foundation

The BID Foundation was formed following an extensive consultation with more than 100 BIDs and key stakeholders. The consultation identified the need for “a recognised trade body to represent the BIDs industry”. The BID Foundation is the alliance of leading BIDs and professionals providing the trusted voice and specialist services the industry has asked for. Established to provide advocacy, leadership and guidance, The BID Foundation is elevating standards - acting as a voice for BIDs as well as providing practical support. The BID Foundation is supported by the Institute of Place Management at Manchester Metropolitan University.


About the Institute of Place Management

Formed in 2006, the Institute of Place Management (IPM) is the international professional membership body and learned society that supports people who serve places, including place managers, policy makers, researchers and students. IPM professionals work at various scales, from neighbourhoods and Business Improvement Districts, to cities and regions. IPM is based at Manchester Metropolitan University, a partnership that allows ready access to world-leading academic expertise and research. The IPM publishes an official journal - the Journal of Place Management and Development, which is taken by over 2,000 institutions, internationally.