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Reform is a free market think-tank which describes itself as ‘an independent, non-party think-tank whose mission is to set out a better way to deliver public services and economic prosperity’.

Reform, Hope House, Great Peter Street, London SW1. Photo taken by Spinwatch, Dec 2010

They ‘believe that by liberalising the public sector, breaking monopoly and extending choice, high quality services can be made available for everyone.’

Their vision is 'of a Britain with 21st Century healthcare, high standards in schools, a modern and efficient transport system, safe streets, and a free, dynamic and competitive economy'. [1]

In a March 2009 presentation Tim Montgomerie and Matthew Elliott described Reform as part of the infrastructure of the conservative movement in Britain.[2]


Reform was launched by Andrew Haldenby, Nick Herbert and Patrick Barbour in 2002. In October 2001, The Times reported having seen a strategy document for the future think-tank which stated that it would be modelled closely on Washington’s Heritage Foundation. The article said Reform would be launched in the New Year, ie early 2002. [3]

Reform was incorporated as a not-for-profit company on 4 December 2001 under the name Reform Britain. The Daily Telegraph reported that it was run by its founders Andrew Haldenby and Nick Herbert, as well as media executive James Bethell.[4]

In May 2004 Reform registered an associated charity the Reform Research Trust. Amongst the new charity’s objectives were to “educate the public on public policy issues, in particular in relation to public services and the economy”. [5]


As of December 2017:



Advisory Board

Former directors/advisors

Former executives

  • Nick Herbert is the Conservative MP for Arundel & South Downs. He co-founded Reform with Andrew Haldenby.
  • Nick Seddon, Was Reform's deputy director until May 2013 when he was appointed Prime Minister David Cameron's health policy adviser. Seddon was head of communications at private hospital firm Circle for 18 months. He left in early 2010. He was replaced at Circle by Christina Lineen, a former aide to Health Secretary Andrew Lansley.[6]
  • Rupert Darwall Consultant Director, Rupert Darwall is a freelance strategy consultant. He was previously Special Adviser to the Chancellor of the Exchequer Norman Lamont.

Former Advisers

Former Advisory Council


Reform describes itself as determinedly independent and states that none of its research is funded by either companies or individuals.

Its corporate partners as of October 2017 include: Association of British Insurers | Adobe | Accenture | Aviva | Babcock | Barclays | BD (medtech company) | BT | British Private Equity and Venture Capital Association (BVCA) | Corporation of London | Clifford Chance | Deloitte | G4S | HP | ICAEW | Ingeus | KBR | KPMG | Optum | PA Consulting | Pfizer | Serco | Sodexo | Opra Steria | Unilink


Organisations listed on Reform's website as providing more than £5,000 in sponsorship to Reform during 2016: Hewlett Packard | Accenture | Baxter Healthcare | Alliance Medical | SimplyHealth | Deloitte | Prospects Services | Home Group | ICAEW | G4S | BT | British Private Equity and Venture Capital Association (BVCA | Association of British Insurers | Age UK | Becton Dickinson UK | McKinsey & Co | Ingeus | KPMG | Big Society Capital| BBC Accounts Payable | KBR | Interserve | Prudential | Babcock International Group | Cisco | Liberata UK | Aviva | Optum | PA Consulting | Serco | Sopra Steria | Raytheon | London Stock Exchange

Other previous funders include: Legal & General, Scottish Widows, Aviva, Benenden insurance, Gen Re (reinsurer of health products) and US health insurance giant UnitedHealth. The industry’s trade body, the Association of British Insurers is also a donor. [7]

Prudential was Reform’s most generous funder in 2012, handing over £67,500.


In May 2011 Reform listed the following as 'corporate members': Association of British Insurers | Aviva | Balfour Beatty | BP | Benenden Healthcare Society | Bevan Brittan | BG Group | British Private Equity and Venture Capital Association | Cable & Wireless | Capita | Centrica | Clifford Chance | Citigroup | City of London Corporation | Ernst & Young | GlaxoSmithKline | G4S | GE | General Healthcare Group | HP | ICAEW | KPMG | MSD | Novo Nordisk | Optical Confederation | PA Consulting Group | RSA | SAP | Serco | Sodexo | Telereal Trillium.


During 2004 the Reform Research Trust received donations of £327,216 and an expenditure of £201,130.[8]

Health lobbying

Reform supports the 'grassroots' campaign group, Doctors for Reform.

During the 2010 Conservative Party conference, Reform ran a number of health-related events including, ‘NHS: The new health service’, an invite only event sponsored by Baxter UK, an arm of the American private healthcare company; and ‘Healthy Competition’, a panel discussion between the Minister for Public Health, Anne Milton, and the CEO of private healthcare company General Healthcare Group.

Health reform

Reform has long advocated free-market reforms to the NHS. It believes that the government should 'grasp the nettle on how health services are financed,' and that 'the Coalition has missed the real opportunity for NHS reform'. [9]

It has argued that 'Co-payments and user charges', should be part of the NHS and the government should do more 'to encourage the greater role of insurance'.[10]

In March 2014 Reform published a report Solving the NHS care and cash crisis. Its recommendations included that:

People in England should be forced to pay a £10-a-month NHS "membership charge" (to save the service from ruin)
People staying overnight in hospital should pay ‘hotel charges’.

Reform is funded by companies which would benefit greatly from the introduction of changes to the way we pay for healthcare. These have included General Healthcare Group, the UK’s largest private hospital firm, but more significantly a large number of corporations in the private health insurance industry.

Health publications

Lobbying firms

Burson-Marsteller provided public affairs services for the Reform Research Trust in 2012 [14]


Contact information



  1. Reform Home Page
  2. Tim Montgomerie, The growth of Britain's conservative movement, ConservativeHome, 14 March 2009.
  3. Tom Baldwin, ‘Davis team plan fuels fears over factions’, The Times, 27 October 2001
  4. George Trefgarne, ‘Let's get radical - and reform our public services’, Daily Telegraph, 11 February 2002
  5. Reform Research Trust Accounts 1 January - 31 December 2004 (PDF)
  6. Public Affairs News, [pointer=9&cHash=a4088759d7 Private healthcare firm Circle recruits ex-Lansley aide to head comms ], July 2010
  7. ref needed
  8. Reform Research Trust Accounts 1 January - 31 December 2004 (PDF)
  9. Tamasin Cave, Who is behind Reform's call for NHS charges?, Spinwatch, 31 March 2013
  10. Reform, Delivering a new health agenda, July 2010
  11. Reform, Delivering a new health agenda, July 2010
  12. Reform, Fewer hospitals, more competition, March 2010
  13. Reform, The future of health, June 2009
  14. PRCA Public Affairs Register: Agencies – June to August 2012 and September to November 2012