PAS Annual Chief Planners & Rising Stars Conference

26th-27th September 2019, Nottingham

It was so lovely to be able to gather Heads of Planning and rising stars from their authorities together at the end of September in Nottingham for the PAS Annual Conference. We realise how important is it that we stay tuned into the pressures that this level of responsibility brings. Working with this group alongside people who they consider to be rising stars was a great experience. 
The conference covered the many elements of the PAS programmes (strategic planning/local plans/delivery/development management/developer contributions) plus tackling some new areas such as resourcing and large scale delivery all tied up with talks from MHCLG’s top planning team.

Thanks to everyone that attended and contributed to the conference. 

The agenda and material from the two day conference can be found below.

DAY 1:

Session 1: PAS Opener: What’s going on and why – Anna Rose, PAS

Session 2: Politics of Planning - Cllr Adele Morris, Southwark Council & Cllr Sean Anstee CBE, Trafford Council

Session 3A: PAS Local Plan Route Mapper – Steve Barker, PAS, Sara Dilmamode, Citiesmode & David Coleman DAC Planning

Session 3B: PlanX & Southwark

Session 3C: Nicola Sworowski, PAS & Catriona Riddell, Strategic Planning

Session 4: Repeat of previous workshops.          

Session 5: Homes England: Design workshop - Amy Burbidge & Dan Roberts, Homes England

Session 6: Survey results and then green paper - Richard Crawley, PAS
Presentation to follow.

Session 7: RTPI: Introducing Chief Planners research and HOPE - Victoria Hills, RTPI

Session 8: Update and Q&A with the Chief Planner - Steve Quartermain, MHCLG

DAY 2:
Session 1: What skills do you need to be a rising stars? - Nicola Sworowski, PAS

Session 2: Update from MHCLG - Simon Gallagher, MHCLG

Session 3: Greater Norwich/ CiL Update - Rachael Ferry-Jones, PAS & Phil Courtier, Great Norwich

Session 4: Housing delivery test - Richard Crawley, PAS

Session 5: Why is there a lack of trust in planners? How can we rebuild this? Panel session

Chair: Steve Barker, PAS
The panel:

  • Thomasin Renshaw, Grosvenor
  • Maria Dunn, Worcester City Council
  • Cllr Bill Stevens, Plymouth City Council


Session 6: Conference Summary. Anna Rose, PAS.
The key messages from the conference is that "Planners are great, you do a really important job. We need you all to be even better with the present and future challenges we face".
The messages that you can take away from the sessions at the conference are;

  •  We need to realise and understand the difficult position that our politicians are in. Our role is to assist, accept that we won’t always agree and jointly find a way forwards.
  •  Plan making is suffering, we are creating tools to help you but they won’t be enough. We can help but you need to tell us that you need it.
  •  We know that you’re all short of resources and that recruitment is tricky. We also know that this is not all going to be solved by extra fees. You need to think differently about how you resource services.
  •  When we think about design, we shouldn’t start with how everything looks. Instead we should begin by looking at how it works. Thinking about reducing the impact of development on the climate will help with this.
  •  We really need to treasure our teams, they are our greatest asset. Talent management, training and networking could be the key to recruitment and retention.
  •  We all know the benefits of working together. Infrastructure costs and needs , in particular, are making this a necessity. It would be great if next year we could see more Councils working in partnership.
  •  We need to rebuild trust in our profession. Part of this is delivering on our promises. Provision of infrastructure and quality of development are key components of this but its also about being honest and open about what we do, what other people can do and how we can all make a difference.

Thank you and see you next year