Event Review: Inter University Quiz – Wednesday 8th March 2017

Back for its second year, the now annual ‘Inter-University Planning Quiz’ was attended this year by 9 teams representing Newcastle (1), Cardiff (1), London South Bank (2) and UCL (5). IMG_20170308_193059After the customary introductions it was ears at the ready for a quiz kindly put together by John Cooney, who also adopted the role of quizmaster for the evening.

The first three rounds put to the test the students’ knowledge of London, planning and world cities. As with all good planning quizzes, there was mention of Ebenezer Howard, the green belt and planning ministers that had such short stints in office they were hard to recollect.

After three engaging rounds thoughts turned to the half-time refreshments and a chance to network and meet students from the different universities. A curry dinner was provided for all in attendance, whilst the RTPI London team tallied up the scores at the halfway point. A special mention at this point goes to the team member from Newcastle who flew in for the event. I’m told he also had other plans whilst in London but we will still give him a shout out for his commitment!

IMG_20170308_194346Following the interval it was back to business and the final two rounds. These comprised of a music round and a general knowledge round to close proceedings. Whilst negotiating quizmaster Cooney’s questions, the students were also tasked with a challenge to deliver the best drawn map of London. Creativity and accuracy were the judging criteria for this one and the stand out winner belonged to the ‘Bartlett Babes’ (UCL). IMG_20170308_203424

Following a nervous wait for the results, the much sought after title of quiz champions went to ‘University Challenged’ (UCL) with a rather impressive score of 48 out of 58. The team led at the half way point and kept their nerve to secure top honours.

RTPI London would like to thank all the students for making the effort to attend the event and contributing to a fun evening for all. A big thank you also goes to Arup for kindly hosting the event and to Open Cities for sponsoring the top prize. Please do join us for a future event and keep up to date with all that we are up to on the website, Twitter and our newly launched Instagram page.


Winning Team – Congratulations to ‘University Challenged’ (UCL)

2nd Place – Planners (UCL)

3rd Place – Planners and other Natural Hazzards  (UCL)

Best Team Name – Eucalyptus (UCL)

Best drawn map of London – Bartlett Babes (UCL)




Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

RTPI London – Assessment of Professional Competence – 13 March 2017

Ready to take your career to the next level?

Become a Chartered Town Planner (MRTPI) through the Licentiate Assessment of Professional Competence (L-APC).

Whatever stage you are at, this event will provide you with essential guidance on achieving success in the L-APC. You will be briefed on:

  • what’s involved in preparing an application
  • what you need to include
  • and how you present it.

It is also a great opportunity to ask questions and hear from others preparing their submissions.

Students, Licentiates, mentors and employers are all welcome.

Book your place quickly as it’s nearly full!

Those applying for Chartered Membership through the Associate or Experienced Practitioner APC routes (A-APC or EP-APC) may also find this event useful, but should be aware that there is some variation in requirements.

To find out more about the L-APC and your eligibility, please see: www.rtpi.org.uk/lapc

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

RTPI London Event Review: Planning Enforcement Conference

Planning Enforcement Conference – 24th February 2017 (Sponsored by Oyster Partnership

It was a full house at the Brent Civic Centre as the half-day RTPI London ‘Planning Enforcement Conference’ got underway. Kindly sponsored by Oyster Partnership, the event attracted attendees from over 20 London Boroughs, a variety of public bodies and private sector practitioners alike.

The collection of speakers had been tasked with considering two central themes: ‘Policy and Guidance’ and ‘Changing Behaviours’. Addressing the first of these was Ed Grant, Barrister of Cornerstone Barristers, who started proceedings with an overview of recent case law to be aware of and highlighted the ongoing use of such judgements in regards to grounds of appeal, unauthorised changes of use and deliberate concealment.

Next, Luke Perkins, RBKC, took delegates through the Borough’s use of S215 Notices. RBKC have become well known for their use of the ‘Untidy Land Notice’, developing a reputation for a no tolerance approach to landowners blighting the streetscene of a Borough that boasts over 3800 statutory listed buildings and 38 conservation areas.  To date, the project is responsible for 140 properties being renovated to an appropriate standard.

The responsibility to close an excellent first session fell to Brian Whitely (Planning Aid for England). Brian spoke about the work Planning Aid has been involved with regarding neighbourhood plans. In discussion, one delegate suggested that detailed policy and guidance at the local level could only assist in taking effective enforcement action where expedient to do so.

Following a short break, Tim Rolt, Planning Enforcement Manager LB Brent, painted an unfavourable picture of ‘small’ houses in multiple occupation that essentially operate as self-contained flats. In addressing the breach of planning in such instances it was noted that enforcement action is typically subject to delays due to appeals. The second part of Tim’s talk centred on confiscation powers under the Proceeds of Crime Act (POCA). Tim explained that the POCA was not only useful in recovering significant income, but importantly in achieving compliance.

Des Adumekwe and Matt Robinson were next up to present LB Hounslow’s ‘Rogue Landlord’ project. Set up in 2013, the project has had support from officers at HMRC, the Metropolitan Police and the Immigration Service, and has visited over 3,500 properties to date. Benefitting from DCLG grant money, a strong management board and member support, it continues to be an active project on the ground and gained national recognition through receipt of the Editor’s Award at the National Planning Awards in 2014.

Rounding off the event, Neill Whittaker (Ivy Legal) steered delegates through intentional unauthorised development, the responsibilities of enforcement officers and the limitations they face when using the ‘Planning Toolkit’.

As the conference drew to a close, discussions turned to the future of planning enforcement. The impact of Brexit on LPA resources is not yet known, but was flagged as a potential threat to the work of enforcement teams across London, whilst the effects associated with a move away from EU ecological and human right law is also unknown. What is important, however, is that the examples given by our speakers illustrated behavioural change through pro-active enforcement is not only possible but often significant. Indeed, these examples from Brent, Kensington and Chelsea and Hounslow could all act as blueprints for other authorities within the capital.

RTPI London would like to thank all of the day’s speakers for contributing to what was a very engaging and thought provoking event. We hope all that attended enjoyed the event and we look forward to seeing you at another event soon.


Presentations available for RTPI members.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Wind modelling project takes top prize at London Planning Awards

A project which modelled wind in and around a cluster of tall buildings in the east of the City of London won the top prize at the 2017 London Planning Awards.


‘Wind modelling of the Easter Cluster’ carried out by City of London won the Mayor’s Award for Planning Excellence, the prize awarded to the overall winner at the London Planning Awards.

The night’s winners also included the Peckham Coal Line, a grassroots project creating a new community park from a disused coal line; the Deptford Project, which has transformed a railway goods yard into a vibrant space for local businesses, cafes and homes; and the Francis Crick Institute, a pioneering partnership that brings six of the world’s leading biomedical research organisations under one roof.

Stephen Wilkinson, president of the Royal Town Planning Institute, said:

“The projects recognised by these awards demonstrate the breadth and diversity of our profession. Planners continue to create better places and improve the well-being of London’s communities.”

Deputy Mayor for Planning, Regeneration and Skills, Jules Pipe, said:

“The projects recognised at this year’s awards are incredibly impressive in terms of the quality of their design and the level of ambition. As London continues to grow we need to ensure our built environment responds to the challenges this brings – and does so in a way which recognises London’s unique heritage and minimises the impact which development has on the environment.”

Full list of category winners (all pictured above in image):

Best Community Led Project

Peckham Coal Line, submitted by 927 crowdfunders

Best Conceptual Project

Wind modelling of the Eastern Cluster, presented by City of London

Best Heritage Led Project

The Deptford Project, submitted by London Borough of Lewisham and U+I Group PLC

Best New Place to Live

London City Island, submitted by EcoWorld Ballymore

Highly commended, Place/Ladywell, submitted by London Borough of Lewisham, Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners, Aecom and SIG

Best New Place to Work

The Francis Crick Institute (‘the Crick’), submitted by The Francis Crick Institute and CBRE Ltd

Highly commended, Make HQ 32 Cleveland Street, submitted by Make Architects, Derwent London, Exigere, GDMP, Akera Engineers and Rougemont

Best New Public Space

Pearson Square, Fitzroy Place, submitted by Exemplar, Lifschutz Davidson Sandilands, Sheppard Robson, Gross Max and Sir Robert McAlpine

Best Project Five Years On

Quadrant 3, submitted by The Crown Estate, Dixon Jones and CBRE

Highly commended, Regent Quarter, submitted by Aedas and P&O Developments

Best Town Centre Project

The Scene, submitted by Hill Partnerships, Islington and Shoreditch Housing Association, Pollard Thomas Edwards and London Borough Waltham Forest

Best Planning Authority

London Borough of Southwark

Mayor’s Award for Planning Excellence

Wind modelling of the Easter Cluster, submitted by City of London

The London Planning Awards are organised by London First, in partnership with RTPI London, the Mayor of London, London Councils and the Planning Officers Society. The awards were presented at a ceremony at London’s City Hall last night.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Review: Permitted Development – 8 February 2017

Permitted development: Latest changes and impacts on London


On Wednesday 8th February Mike Derbyshire. Head of Planning at Bidwells, and John East, Strategic Director for Growth and New Homes at London Borough of Barking and Dagenham, spoke at RTPI London’s CPD and networking event “Permitted Development: Latest changes and impacts on London”. The event was sponsored by Bidwells and focused on office to residential permitted development rights.

Mike explained how office to residential PD rights work, key appeal decisions and take up across London. Mike highlighted that circa 13,000 new homes were provided from the change of use of offices nationally in 2015/16, a significant proportion of the 190,000 dwellings added to stock in total during the same period.

John East provided a focused insight on the impacts – positive and negative – in Barking and Dagenham. Using a number of case studies, he explained the benefits of regenerating low grade office space in sustainable locations, experience that showed many of the schemes completed under PD had not led to dwellings falling below acceptable space standards, despite a lack of policy control, but also concern about the absence of affordable housing.

A straw poll taken at the end of the event suggested a narrow majority of those attending considered office to residential permitted development rights to be positive attribute of the planning system. A follow up poll is being conducted on twitter to corroborate this result. Check it out, along with the discussion surrounding the event, by searching #PD2017.

Presentations are available on request.


Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

RTPI London YP Networking Drinks – 20 April 2017

Come and join us for Aprils YP Networking Drinks

Red wine Join us at the Drake and Morgan bar in King Cross, where you can meet other like minded members from within the built environment.

And…we will be running a RAFFLE with great prizes on offer, courtesy of Mattinson Partnership.


You know these events sell out quickly, so please don’t delay, book your place and join us for another great evening.

With huge thanks to Mattinson Partnership for making this evening possible.



Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

RTPI London Assessment of Professional Competence – 13 March 2017

Held at:  Committee Room 1, Kensington Town Hall, Hornton Street, London, W8 7NX

Need help with your APC? Ready to take your career to the next level?

Whatever stage you are at, this event will provide you with essential guidance on achieving success in the L-APC.

You will be briefed on:

  • what’s involved in preparing an application
  • what you need to include
  • and how you present it.

It is also a great opportunity to ask questions and hear from others preparing their submissions.

Students, Licentiates, mentors and employers are all welcome.

Book your place quickly as this seminar fills up fast.

Supported by the Royal London Borough of Kensington and Chelsea.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

RTPI London Event: Inter-University Quiz – 8 March 2017


Pitch your planning and general knowledge against other London based Planning University teams for the Inter-Uni Quiz!  Last years was so popular (and fun) we thought we would run it again.

All event details can be found here.

Uni Quiz 2017.jpg

With thanks to Arup who are sponsoring this University Challange.


Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

RTPI London: Networking Drinks – 16 February 2017

night shot in London.JPG

Help RTPI London kick off 2017 with a social and networking drinks at The Yorkshire Grey pub.  Sponsorshed by Osborne Richardson, come celebrate that ‘dry’ January is over and spring is just around the corner.  Drinks and nibbles will be provided, all you need to bring is yourselves.
Only the final few places left – so be quick!

Sponsored by:

Even Smaller OR Property Recruitment Logo _OR Property - General Logo

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Video of ‘The Big Debate’ – 30 Jan 2017?


Did you miss The Big Debate, held at the NLA on 30 January 2017?  Fear not, you can watch the video here.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment