ENews Issue - 18 December 2015

ENews - December 2015

TRA ENews is the monthly newsletter of Trevor Roberts Associates. It provides information about TRA generally, its staff and Associates, current and forthcoming events, new training courses and consultancy services etc.

View our contact Information or subscription information.

In this issue:

  • Season's Greetings
  • Latest vacancies on TRA Planning Jobs Board
  • Certificated programme in Enforcement: 6 more graduates
  • Christmas holidays
  • 2016 Training Programme for Scotland almost ready!
  • Second session completed in Mendip's bespoke training series for Councillors
  • Charnwood and Horsham focus on improving their Use of Conditions




Season's Greetings

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Latest vacancies on TRA Planning Jobs Board

Here are some of the current vacancies on our Planning Jobs Board (with closing dates in January):

  • Development Team Manager - Ashfield DC
  • Lead Conservation Officer/Assistant Team Leader - Dacorum BC
  • Lead Planning Officers (x 3) - Dacorum BC
  • Principal Planning Officer (DC) - Waverley BC
  • Principal Planning Officer (Enforcement) - Basildon BC
  • Principal Planning Officer - Eastleigh BC
  • Senior Planning Officer - Malvern Hills DC
  • Senior Policy and Strategy Planners (x2) - Babergh and Mid Suffolk DCs
  • Senior Planning Officer (Policy) 2 year fixed term - Rushmoor BC
  • Strategic Planning Officer - Dacorum BC
  • Spatial Planning Policy Officers (x2) - Babergh and Mid Suffolk DCs
  • Planning Officer (Planning Policy) - Rushmoor BC
  • Planning Officer - Dacorum BC
  • Planning Officers (DM) - Eden DC
  • Planning Officer - Waverley BC
  • Enforcement Investigations Officer - Malvern Hills DC

Advertising on our Jobs Board is entirely free to local authorities handling their own recruitment (unfortunately we can't offer it to recruitment agencies). We are keen to include planning roles of all types including those in planning support and planning enforcement.

If you would like to advertise a vacancy you can download our 1-page pdf which provides more information. Alternatively, you can simply send your text and the authority's logo to jobsboard@tra-ltd.co.uk. The Jobs Board is fully managed by TRA's staff in Bolton to ensure that the whole process of advertising is as quick and hassle-free as possible.

It is also free to search for those looking for a new opportunity. So if you are in the market for a new challenge in 2016, visit TRA's Planning Jobs Board regularly.

And please - if you do apply for one of these vacancies we'd be really grateful if you could mention that you saw it on the TRA Planning Jobs Board (most application forms ask this question).

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Certificated programme in Enforcement: 6 more graduates

Since August, a further six students have been awarded their certificate after successfully completing TRA's Certificated Course in Planning Enforcement. They are:

  • Christine Danby, Broxtowe BC
  • Janet Hurst, London Borough of Lewisham
  • Richard Lockett, London Borough of Lewisham
  • Stephanie Waldron, Watford BC
  • Tony Risebrow, The Broads Authority
  • William Myers, Welwyn Hatfield BC.

This takes the number graduating during 2015 to 14 and the grand total for the programme since its start to 166 graduates.

Undertaking the certificated course is a significant commitment but the benefits, for both the individual and their organisation, can be considerable. We would like to offer all these students (now graduates!) our congratulations on their hard work and achievements.

A couple of our new graduates have kindly put together their thoughts on the programme for the benefit of those who may be interested in enrolling:

  • The most relevant, work-based training that I have ever received. Thank you TRA. I feel much more confident and equipped for mey new role. From the excellent tutorial session at Cambridge led by our first class tutor, Viv Green, to the wonderful network of colleagues/friends built along the way, this course is a must for any enforcement officer. Stephanie Waldron
  • I found undertaking the TRA Certificate in Planning Enforcement enormously helpful. My day to day work has benefitted from my increased knowledge and enabled me to function with considerably less supervision which is critical in a busy department. Tony Risebrow.

The rest of their comments and those of other 2015 graduates can be viewed here.

Full details of the certificated course can be found on our website. For any questions regarding the programme please contact Shelagh Pooley by email or phone on 01204 385678.

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Christmas holidays

The TRA office will close on Wednesday 23 December and re-open on Monday 4 January.

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2016 Training Programme for Scotland almost ready!

The TRA 2016 Training Programmes are currently being finalised with the one for Scotland now almost complete. Once ready it will be posted on our website and circulated to the usual postal and email contacts on our mailing list.

If you would like to sign up to the mailing list you can do so via our website here.

The workshops which will feature in the 2016 Scotland programme (including 2 brand new ones) are:

  • An Introduction to Enforcement: maintaining the integrity of the planning process (NEW)
  • The Basics of Planning
  • The Use and Abuse of Planning Conditions and Section 75 Obligations
  • The Language of Urban Design
  • Harnessing the Potential of Support Staff: an essential step towards improved planning performance
  • Effective Planning Appeals (NEW)
  • Negotiation Skills: the key to achieving planning goals and objectives
  • Understanding and Defining Development
  • Current Issues in Planning Enforcement: essential CPD update

Our popular Block Booking system will remain in place for 2016 offering discounts of between 10 and 15% for bookings of 2 or more places made at the same time over any number of events in the programme. The scheme offers an ideal opportunity to sort out all your training needs for 2016 in one go as well as making training budgets stretch that little bit further!

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Second session completed in Mendip's bespoke training series for Councillors

TRA recently completed its second in-house Councillor training session in a series of four at Mendip District Council. The first was a one-day 'Briefing on Planning' back in October, with two more short sessions still to run in January (The Role of Councillors in Planning) and March (Planning Obligations and Conditions).

The recent half-day workshop provided an overview of the significance of Appeals in the planning system. It looked at the way appeals are decided; and in particular considered the changes since the arrival of the National Planning Policy Framework. It also highlighted the principles behind the costs regime. The workshop provided an opportunity for debate on the above, and generally threw some light on a number of current "grey areas".

The session was put together and delivered by TRA Senior Associate, David Kaiserman and participant feedback was very complimentary:

  • Most certainly met my expectations. What a splendid company with consistently excellent presenters. Nigel Hewitt-Cooper
  • A stimulating evening. Clive Mockford
  • Very good, thank you! Daniel Unwin
  • Fully met my expectations. Brilliant! Peter Bradshaw
  • Very interesting and though provoking. Nigel Woollcombe-Adams
  • An excellent presentation. David Stevens

TRA is very experienced in training Councillors in planning. It has been specialising in this for over 20 years, and has conducted in-house assignments involving many thousands of Councillors in almost 240 authorities throughout England, Wales and Scotland.

Please refer to the Councillors Training section of our website to see what we can offer in terms of in-house training for your Members. If you have any specific requirements please do not hesitate to contact Angela Holmes who will be happy to discuss your needs in more detail and provide you with a no obligation quotation if required.

Please note that the prices we quote are 'all-inclusive' so include all of our fees, presenter's expenses and pre-course/course material; meaning there are no hidden charges and our clients are aware of what they can expect to pay at invoicing stage from the outset.

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Charnwood and Horsham focus on improving their Use of Conditions

TRA was recently commissioned to deliver one of our NEW workshops - Use of Conditions: necessary, precise and enforceable? - on an in-house basis at both Charnwood BC and Horsham DC.

The workshop is suitable for anyone involved in drafting conditions or in monitoring and enforcing them. Topics include:

  • meeting the legal tests for the use of conditions
  • using "model" conditions (including those used by the Planning Inspectorate)
  • the importance of giving sound and convincing reasons
  • how to deal with conditions suggested by consultees
  • control through s106 or condition?
  • handling applications to vary/remove conditions.

It also looks at the problems involved in monitoring and securing compliance with conditions, including:

  • monitoring issues and the Ombudsman's views on maladministration
  • is a "pre-commencement" condition needed?
  • what is a "genuine" pre-commencement condition?; what are the implications if it is not complied with?
  • different types of condition and immunity periods.

The workshop concludes by looking at ways of working together to improve effectiveness including, pre-viewing conditions, the ordering of conditions on decision notices, reviewing/drafting "model" conditions and how to find out about commencement.

The session was developed and delivered by Senior TRA Presenter, Vivien Green, and feedback from both days was excellent:

  • Very detailed, managed to include all attendees whether planning enforcement officer, highways or EHO. Gave a lot to think about, but was prepared to share experience and give opinions. Very enjoyable day, time passed quickly, learnt a lot. Thank you! Ann Green, Charnwood BC
  • Most relevant training, useful for service. Would happily use this training provider in the future. Graham Smith, Charnwood BC
  • Excellent presentation with good case studies relevant to the issues discussed. Captured my attention for the entire session. Richard Bennett, Charnwood BC
  • One of the best training sessions I have attended. Hopefully this is a change in our Councils current practices; in the meantime I will be taking on board the advice given. H. Baker, Charnwood BC
  • The workshop was very informative. It cleared many grey areas and focused attention on formation of conditions and specific wording to make their lawfulness and enforceability. Well delivered, interesting and informative. A. Wilkes, Horsham DC
  • Exceeded expectations, very thorough with use of case studies and examples further enlightening the issues. Thank you! Tamara Dale, Horsham DC
  • Very useful detailed discussions on wording and enforceability of conditions. Helen Lowe, Horsham DC

If you think your authority would benefit from an in-house training session on the Use of Conditions then please do not hesitate to contact Angela Holmes who will be pleased to provide you with a no obligation quotation.

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Contact Information

Trevor Roberts Associates

1 Atlas House, St. Georges Square,

Bolton, BL1 2HB,

United Kingdom

Tel: (01204) 385678

Fax: (01204) 386376

Email: mail@tra-ltd.co.uk

Website: http://www.tra-ltd.co.uk/

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