ENews Issue - 07 September 2007

ENews - September 2007

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.

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TRA is looking to appoint a new Senior Planning Consultant to its core team. Initially, we are advertising the vacancy via TRA ENews, essentially giving readers of our newsletter the opportunity to "get in first".

The post of Senior Planning Consultant will be permanent and ideally full-time, although we will consider applications from those wishing to work part-time. The full-time salary will be in the range of £30-34,000, plus performance related bonus.

This represents an exciting opportunity for someone with planning qualifications and a minimum of 5 years' experience in a local authority planning environment. If you (or someone you know) might be interested in a job like this, please get in touch for a full information pack and application form.

The postholder will:

  • develop and run training sessions for both officers and members on aspects of planning, focusing on our k ey areas of development control, forward planning, enforcement and administration/procedures
  • work in and/or lead consultancy teams undertaking reviews of local authority planning procedures (development control in particular) and developing online Procedure Guides
  • conduct research and good practice studies.

Although the postholder should be able to visit and/or work from our Bolton office from time to time, we envisage that he/she will be home-based with appropriate computer links. The work involves extensive travel throughout the UK, so it is necessary to be prepared to work away from home. This would usually be for a couple of days at a time but could on occasion be for as much as three or four days.

If you would like to receive a PDF information pack and application form, please email to jobs@tra-ltd.co.uk. The closing date for applications is Tuesday 25 September 2007.


TRA is developing a brand new one-day workshop, looking at The Local Authority Role in Regeneration & Development.

Regeneration is an activity which people from many different departments need to be engaged in but, all too often, their involvement is disengaged and people can end up pulling in different directions. The workshop has been designed to be suitable for all LA practitioners (whatever their background) who are involved in regeneration in one way or another and need to understand the overall context and how they can better contribute to the regeneration process in their authority.

The workshop will cover topics such as:

  • regeneration in context
  • the urban design agenda
  • strategy, partnerships and regeneration initiatives
  • project and programme management, and
  • overcoming the barriers.

Workshops are planned in Manchester, London and York during 2008 and d etails will be available shortly. Just let us know if you are not on our mailing list but would like to receive details of this particular workshop when they are finalised.


Next years' programme of workshops organised by TRA on behalf of the National Association of Tree Officers will introduce a number of new workshops including:

  • Urban tree planting and management
  • Rural tree and woodland amenity planting, and
  • Arboricultural techniques, methods and materials explained.

The programme for 2008 is currently being produced and details will be available soon on our website and in ENews.

In the meantime, it's not too late to book on workshops running between now and the end of 2007. Details of the 2007 NATO programme are on our website.

If you would like to receive publicity circulations regarding the NATO programme by email, please visit the Mailing List page of our website and let us have your details.


TRA is pleased to welcome a new member of staff, Debra Pemberton, who will be providing reception services for some of our training events as well as working two days a week in admin support in TRA's Bolton office.

Debra is married, with a little boy (and a cat). In her spare time she enjoys gardening, shopping and swimming and is about to go off to New Zealand for the first time to visit relatives.

Having worked in the office since June, Debra is keen to start handling reception at workshops and conferences and getting to meet participants and presenters alike. Her first assignment will be at the Conference for Planning Support Staff in Manchester later this month.

One of our long-standing receptionists, Linda Roughley, who many of you will have met, "retired" from TRA over the summer. She made the move in order to more easily split her time between looking after her elderly father and v isiting her house in Spain (can't be bad!). Linda has worked for TRA since 2000 and will be missed.


There is still time to book on the brand new workshop on Examinations of Development Plan Documents developed jointly by TRA and the Planning Inspectorate.

There are places available in London on 26 September; York on 30 October; and Bristol on 21 November.

The workshop aims to provide those who are about to be involved in an examination with a better understanding of the new system; what it is designed to achieve; and crucially, how they personally can participate in the process effectively. The workshop includes a mock examination exercise after lunch, giving all participants an opportunity to get involved.

The workshop is delivered by one of TRA's Senior Associates, Jed Griffiths, and David Fenton, a Planning Inspector with many years' experience of working for both LPAs and PINS.

If you would like to reserve a place provisionally please telephone us on 01204 385678 or use our online provisional bookings facility. If you would like to make a confirmed booking you can download a PDF leaflet/booking form.


We are expecting more than 80 people at our next Conference for Planning Support Staff but there is still time to book a place if you or your colleagues would like to attend. Prompt booking is recommended though as participant numbers are restricted.

The conference is being held in Manchester on Thursday 27 September. You can find details of speakers and topics on our website or download a PDF leaflet/booking form.

We would recommend making a provisional booking if you cannot send a confirmed booking straight away - either telephone us or use the provisional bookings facility on our website.


TRA has been involved in establishing an important new action learning project, working alongside the Planning Officers' Society and 16 local planning authorities from across England. The output of the Development Management Practice Project is a series of Best Practice Guidance Notes to assist those involved in development management. The Guidance Notes will focus on particular areas of practice where there is currently little in the way of formal guidance as to what constitutes best practice.

The second Guidance Note on Pre and Post Decision Amendments is now available for download free of charge. I f you missed the publication of the first Guidance Note on Public Speaking in Planning Committees you can download that too.

The project began in April 2007 and is initially set to run for 12 months. Future work will focus on topics such as:

  • how authorities should best approach the issues of validation
  • the involvement of members at the pre-application stage, and
  • the management of major applications.
Guidance Notes on these topics will be posted on both the TRA and Planning Officers' Society websites as they are produced.


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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