Alcohol Toolkit Study

Principal Investigator
Professor Susan Michie & Dr Jamie Brown, UCL
Professor Robert West, Dr Lion Shahab (UCL), Professor Matthew Hickman, Dr Frank de Vocht (University of Bristol), Dr John Holmes, Mr Colin Angus, Dr Penny Buykx, Dr Duncan Gillespie, Professor Alan Brennan (University of Sheffield), Professor Eileen Kaner, Dr Amy O’Donnell, Dr Ruth McGovern (University of Newcastle)
Additional UCL team members
Dr Emma Beard
Project start and end dates
May 2017 - October 2018
Funder NIHR School for Public Health Research 
Project website

Project details


Since March 2014, the Alcohol Toolkit Study (ATS) has provided monthly tracking data on alcohol consumption and harm, with important trends published monthly on a dedicated website: The ATS consists of cross-sectional household, computer-assisted interviews of representative samples of adults in England aged 16+. Each month a new sample of approximately 1800 adults complete the survey (~n = 21,600 per year). All respondents who consent to be followed-up are asked to complete a telephone survey 6 months later. 

The primary objective of the ATS is to evaluate the impact of national and local alcohol control policies and interventions. A secondary objective is to improve understanding of population level factors influencing alcohol consumption. Key findings, from earlier NIHR School for Public Health Research (SPHR) funding (2014-17) are summarised in an NIHR Public Health Evidence Briefing.

ATS data collection is now primarily supported through a Cancer Research UK Programme Grant (2017-2022, Principal Investigator, Professor Robert West) as part of the Smoking Toolkit Study (STS) using the Alcohol Use Disorder Identification Test (AUDIT) Questionnaire to investigate the links between smoking cessation and hazardous drinking. 

The new NIHR SPHR funding supports additional data collection to provide contextual information to the data collected by way of the Cancer Research UK grant including attempts, motivation and triggers to cut down, receipt of brief interventions and use of aids to reduce excessive alcohol consumption.