Lincoln will showcase its attractions and share best practice about how the city is managed, when it plays host to a major gathering next year.
Up to 200 delegates from across the UK and Ireland are expected to come to Lincoln for the Association of Town Centre Managers’ (ATCM) Summer School in 2013.
The event will be centred on the University of Lincoln’s School of Business and Management, but delegates will be given plenty of time to explore the city when they are not taking part in workshops and group sessions.
Lincoln BIG revealed the news after its chief executive Matt Corrigan and evening economy manager Marion Cooney returned from this year’s ATCM Summer School at Bristol University.
During the event, Lincoln was presented with its Purple Flag Award – which recognises that the city is a great place to enjoy “after dark”.
Mr Corrigan said: “Securing next year’s summer school is a real coup for the city. The timing is good for us because of the investment planned in the city, particularly in tourism, and we have lots of news and ideas to share with the visiting town centre managers and Business Improvement Districts.
“We will be able to show visitors the UK’s Greatest Street – Steep Hill, discuss Visit Lincoln Partnership, the introduction of the new open top tour bus, how we achieved our Purple Flag Award and how the BID works with key partners to ensure the city is clean, safe and attractive.
“The Mary Portas Review has put the High Street and city centres under the spotlight and we can reflect on this because the BID has been building on its unique programme of popular events and introduced a diverse range of colourful home-grown and visiting markets – a topic picked-up on by the Portas Review.”
The ATCM’s Summer Conference in Bristol explored issues around the changing retail scene and customer expectations, as well as the BID (Business Improvement District) model.
Delegates discussed what High Streets might look like in 2020, how businesses need to respond to change, how town mentre Managers might support them and whether they needed to rethink what they did.
Mr Corrigan said Lincoln is delighted it is playing host to conference delegates next year. “The fact that we’ve been chosen is testimony to how much we have to offer,” he said.
ATCM Chief Executive Martin Blackwell said: “Lincoln has been a shining example of city centre and BID Management for many years. I am very pleased that we will be coming next year.”
The ATCM has been involved with the Portas Report and the evolving Portas Pilots, as well as creating and leading the National Town Team, to help guide both successful and unsuccessful applicants for Government funding.
It has also created the High Street 100 group to provide guidance and networking for 100 local authorities, which have received Government funding under the High Street Innovation fund as part of the Government’s response to the Portas Review.