ENews Issue - 29 October 2010

ENews - October 2010

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:

  • TRA survey on training - give us your thoughts
  • Take advantage of discounted in-house training - for a limited time only!
  • Latest awards ceremony for certificated course graduates
  • Certificates of Lawfulness - Training now available in England and Wales
  • Training workshops for planning and development staff - still time to book!
  • TRA Training Workshop Programme for 2011 to be announced soon




TRA survey on training - give us your thoughts - 29/10/10

We are really keen you get your views on various aspects of training and development for planning practitioners (whether you currently use TRA's services or not) and would ask you to spare five minutes to complete our short survey. Your responses will remain confidential.

We are offering a free place on one of TRA's one-day events in 2011 for one lucky respondent chosen at random. If you want to be entered into the draw (and only in that case) you will need to provide an email address but we promise not to use this for any other purpose and we won't contact you about anything you say as part of the survey.

The closing date for survey responses is Friday 17th December but why not take part now? Just click on the link below.

Your thoughts will be really useful to us in developing the training services we offer so thank you very much in advance. It would also be great if you would forward these details to any of your colleagues who might be willing to take part in the survey.

Complete the TRA survey now.

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Take advantage of discounted in-house training - for a limited time only! - 28/10/10

TRA has always offered high quality, practically oriented training at competitive prices and we pride ourselves on offering really good value for money. We all know that when money is tight, as it is at the moment in local government, it can be really difficult to hold on to a budget for training. However, staff training and development is essential for organisations wishing to continually improve their services, work effectively and increase efficiency - it should be seen as an important investment for the future.

Neglecting training often proves to be short sighted and can lead to major problems later on, so, to help ease the current financial burden on local authorities we are offering a 10% price discount on ALL of our one day, in-house training workshops aimed at officers and staff who are involved in town planning.

This level of discount means that a one-day in-house session could cost as little as £85 per person; in addition, travel is minimised which makes it more environmentally friendly and time away from work is kept to a minimum, which is often a major consideration.

The training takes the form of workshops with a limited number of participants (maximum 20) and an interactive, participatory style with discussion and case studies. In-house officer sessions can easily be organised for individual authorities, or for groups of authorities joining together. There are a number of benefits to the latter approach, not least affordability and cost-effectiveness but many of our clients find that their staff benefit immensely from being in an environment where they can share local knowledge and experience with staff from other authorities. See a full list of the workshops for officers included in this offer.

In order to take advantage of this discount, you would need to book your proposed officer workshop(s) no later than Monday 31st January, 2011. The session(s) can be delivered any-time up until the end of December 2011. If you would like more information, including an outline programme, please contact Angela Holmes, without obligation. Don't miss out on this unique opportunity to commission high quality training, at a low price!

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Latest awards ceremony for certificated course graduates - 27/10/10

A number of students who have successfully completed one of TRA's certificated courses at Cambridge University returned to Madingley Hall, the venue for the courses, earlier this week to attend an awards ceremony.

Three students were there to receive the Certificate in Town Planning Support - Mary Moore (Wiltshire Council), Leanne Stopp (Tendring DC) and Karen Swinney (Carlisle City Council). Also there to receive her certificate in Management Concepts and Skills in Planning was Maria Tourvas (who began the certificate while working for Essex CC and is now at Uttlesford DC).

It was a really enjoyable occasion and all of the students were able to bring along family members or friends who had supported them during their studies, to say thank you and to share the celebrations with them. Stewart Glassar, TRA's Planning Manager, was also at the ceremony to see the students receive their hard-earned certificates. It is a considerable achievement and everyone at TRA, and especially their Tutors, sends their congratulations to these students and all the other recent graduates who were not able to attend.

Pictured below from left to right are Karen, Mary, Leanne and Maria.

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Certificates of Lawfulness - Training now available in England and Wales - 26/10/10

Since 2009 TRA has delivered training on Certificates of Lawfulness in Scotland, on an inter-authority and in-house basis. Due to the success of this particular workshop it has now been incorporated into the main 2011 TRA training programme for England/Wales (details available shortly) and is also available to run in-house.

Certificates of Lawfulness were introduced by the Planning and Compensation Act 1991 and can be used for establishing both immunity from enforcement action or the need for planning permission. If handled correctly they can be a versatile tool. Applications for Certificates are variously dealt with by planning, enforcement or legal Officers; on the other hand, if you are employed in the private sector, having a good understanding of Certificate applications can be of considerable advantage to your clients.

The workshop examines the effect and content of both Existing (S191) and Proposed (S192) Use Certificates using a mixture of presentations, case studies and group exercises. Particular emphasis is given to examining prevailing case law. The workshop will equip participants with a greater confidence by improving their awareness of the benefits of Certificates of Lawfulness; developing knowledge of relevant legislation and government advice, and by providing opportunities to exchange personal experiences.

The workshop is presented by Michael Hyde, and an in-house session he recently delivered at Aberdeenshire Council resulted in some excellent feedback:

  • Learned a lot, particularly from case studies discussed. As always TRA course up to normal high standard and did not disappoint. Marion Harley.
  • Very knowledgeable and engaging. A very good trainer, relevant cases and held our interest well. Sharon Sinclair.
  • Excellent informative course, would recommend to all. Was handy having trainer come to our authority rather than us having to travel to Glasgow/Edinburgh. Stuart Newlands.
  • This course held my interest for the whole day and managed to cover all topics. Another useful and enjoyable TRA course. Thanks. Shona Robbie.
  • Very informative with good use of case studies and practical exercises. Feel knowledge on the topic has increased significantly and would now be confident dealing with applications for certificates of lawful use. Michael Lorimer.
  • Good examples and clearly demonstrated what evidence should be provided and how to deal with various types of situations where COL may be applicable. Neil Mair.

If you are interested in the possibility of running this workshop in-house then please contact Angela Holmes for an outline programme and a no-obligation quote. Information on how we organise in-house training and its many benefits can be found on our website.

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Training workshops for planning and development staff - still time to book! - 18/10/10

Places are still available on a number of TRA workshops coming up in November in both the England/Wales and Scotland programmes, offering a last minute opportunity if you would like to book a place:

  • Effective Monitoring of Planning Agreements - London, 4 November 2010

    With large sums of money either owed to or still unspent by planning authorities, the effective monitoring of planning agreements is absolutely crucial if communities are to benefit fully from the infrastructure and development funding ear-marked for their area. This practical workshop provides knowledge and good practice guidance for local authority practitioners involved in setting up or managing s106 monitoring arrangements.

  • Permitted Development - Edinburgh, 9 November 2010

    This workshop will develop the knowledge and confidence essential in dealing with this complex aspect of development management. Suitable for planning support staff, junior planning officers and enforcement staff, this popular workshop explains how permitted development works and provides help in interpreting and applying the more popular classes of permitted development. It will also look at some of the practical issues related to the proposed amendments to householder PD.

  • Trees, Landscape & Ecology for Planners - Manchester, 23 November 2010

    The aim of this recently updated workshop is to provide planning staff with the knowledge and understanding needed to make informed decisions regarding tree retention, protection, removal and replacement within the context of the now established BS5837:2005 'Trees in relation to construction - Recommendation'. Participants will also learn about ecology and landscape within the planning framework, enabling planning officers to seek the right information and know what to expect.

Further details for each workshop and a booking form are available on the website by clicking on the relevant link above. If you are unable to make a firm booking straight away, but would like to reserve a place provisionally, you can do so either by telephone on 01204 385678 or by using the provisional bookings facility on our website.

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TRA Training Workshop Programme for 2011 to be announced soon - 14/10/10

We are currently putting the finishing touches to the TRA inter-authority training workshop programmes for 2011 in both England/Wales and Scotland. A number of familiar workshops are being overhauled for 2011 and the programme also sees the introduction of some brand new workshops on topics such as:

  • Affordable Housing (new to both the England/Wales and Scotland programmes)
  • Trees, Landscape & Ecology for Planners (updated workshop on both the England/Wales and Scotland programmes)
  • Community Engagement (new to the England/Wales programme)
  • Planning Enforcement in Practice (new to the England/Wales programme)
  • Certificates of Lawfulness: what are they and how should they be handled? (new to the England/Wales programme)
  • Character and Appearance as a Material Consideration (new to the Scotland programme).

Look out for the details of the new programmes which will be posted on our website in the next few weeks. Details will also be circulated to our usual contacts by post or e-mail in due course. If you are not on our mailing list and would like to receive details of the new programmes you can sign up via the website. (If you already receive our promotional material by post you can use this form to sign up to receive it by e-mail instead if you prefer).

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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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