Number 10 Policy Unit

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United Kingdom
Number 10 Policy Unit
Royal Coat of Arms of the United Kingdom (HM Government).svg
Policy Unit overview
Formed 1974
Policy Unit executive
Parent department 10 Downing Street

The Number 10 Policy Unit is a body of policymakers in 10 Downing Street in the British government. Originally set up to support Harold Wilson in 1974, it has gone through a series of guises to suit the needs of successive Prime Ministers, staffed variously by political advisers, civil servants or a combination of both.

The Coalition Government of May 2010 quickly disbanded two major parts of central infrastructure, the Prime Minister's Delivery Unit (PMDU) and Prime Minister's Strategy Unit (PMSU), as part of the Prime Minister's agenda to reduce the number of special advisers and end micromanagement of Whitehall.[1] In their place, a strengthened Policy and Implementation Unit was launched in early 2011, staffed wholly by civil servants and reporting jointly to the Prime Minister and Deputy Prime Minister under joint heads Paul Kirby[2] (Policy) and Kris Murrin (Implementation).[3]

Members of the Policy Unit in 2010 were [1] Gavin Lockhart-Mirams (Home Affairs), Sean Worth (Health and Adult Social Care),[4] Chris Brown (Education), Richard Freer (Defence),[5] Tim Luke (Business and Enterprise),[6] Michael Lynas (Big Society)[7] and Ben Moxham (Energy and Environment).[8] The Unit is supported by the Research and Analytics Unit.[9]

A new board was announced in October 2013.[10]


Directed by John Godfrey, the Unit works closely with Conservative political advisers and the private office of the Prime Minister.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Ethos Journal
  2. ^ Cameron's New Backroom Team Aims to Move Story On from U-turns and Cuts [1]
  3. ^ Dudman, Jane (2011-06-09). "No 10 happy with civil servant advisers". The Guardian. 
  4. ^ Editor's blog Friday 18 March 2011: EXCLUSIVE - Paul Bate is No 10's new health policy adviser | Health Policy Insight
  5. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2011-09-28. Retrieved 2011-07-09. 
  6. ^ Cameron abandons hands-off approach to government
  7. ^ Stratton, Allegra (2010-11-08). "Labour says government putting too many Tory allies in civil service". The Guardian. 
  8. ^ Stratton, Allegra (2011-03-10). "Energy policy role at No 10 for former BP man". The Guardian. 
  9. ^ The new 10 Downing Street The Tory Diary
  10. ^ Isabel Hardman (15 October 2013). "New Number 10 policy board announced". The Spectator. Retrieved 19 November 2013. 
  11. ^ BBC Radio 4 (2005-12-02). "Any Questions? transcript". BBC. Retrieved 2006-12-17. 
  12. ^ "Downing Street political advisers". Retrieved 29 March 2017.