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New workshops to help towns bid for 2nd round Portas Pilot funds

With the official announcement of the first 12 Portas Pilot Town Teams expected shortly, the Association of Town Centre Management has scheduled two further workshops to give guidance to town centres making second round entries.

GENERAL MERCHANDISE

New workshops to help towns bid for 2nd round Portas Pilot funds

With the official announcement of the first 12 Portas Pilot Town Teams expected shortly, the Association of Town Centre Management has scheduled two further workshops to give guidance to town centres making second round entries.

Workshops will be held in London on 24 May and Bradford on 30 May. Attendance is free and entry forms can be found at www.atcm.org/events.

This brings the total number of workshops the ATCM will have run to seven, with the Government looking to fund a total of 24 pilots, each receiving a share of over £2 million.

Half-day workshops have already been held in Solihull, Bristol, Bolton and London, with more than 300 people attending from all over England.

The workshops have been organised by the ATCM on behalf of the Department of Communities and Local Government to provide insights into the background of the Portas Review, the Government's thinking, essential elements of making a good application and tips on public relations and social media as well as ideas for maintaining momentum.

Martin Blackwell, CEO of the ATCM said: "This is a great opportunity not just to make sure that the best possible applications are submitted, but to use the occasion to meet others who are passionate about their High Street and learn from each other."

In announcing the initial funding round for the pilots in February, DCLG minister Grant Shapps said: "In the face of stiff competition from Internet shopping and out-of-town shopping centres, it's clear that our high streets need to offer something new if they're to survive.

"That's why I've urgently implemented two of the most important recommendations from Mary Portas's review, to find 12 Portas Pilot areas that can use their enthusiasm, energy and imagination to put into practice their innovative ideas for breathing new life into their town centres."

The second round of funding for a further 12 Pilots was announced as part of the Government's formal response to the Portas review at the end of March as part of the "Portas Plus" deal.
 

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