At Platinum Property Partners (PPP), we are doers. We don’t just sit around and talk about things that will make our company more engaging, more dynamic – in a word, better – we get out there and actually do it. We stay on top of all current legislation and make it our business to build great relationships with councils up and down the country.

Which is why we were excited to be part of the London Borough of Bromley work-shadow initiative – the first of its kind – organised by the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI). James Blake, one of PPP’s Planning Consultants, recently shadowed Jim Kehoe, the Chief Planning Officer at London Borough of Bromley. James learned a lot, including:

● The challenges and opportunities local authorities face on a daily basis.

● How strategic decisions are made.

● How councils tackle social, economic, environmental and political challenges.

● How to manage and encourage collaboration between development management, planning policy and economic regeneration teams.

● How authorities are involving communities that are usually underrepresented in planning processes, such as the youth community.

Teamwork Makes the Dream Work

It’s not just London Borough of Bromley that is taking part in the scheme – 20 local planning authorities across England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland are involved. They all aim to nurture future leadership talent in the profession.

Chief Executive of RTPI, Victoria Hills, says: “Amid the challenges of Brexit and tight resources, strong, experienced local planning leadership makes all the difference. Our members tell us that councillors are more likely to respect planning advice from a senior officer from a chief executive’s team. We’re passionate about putting it back at the top table, and that’s why it is vitally important to inspire young planners with this ambition and precious career development opportunity.”

PPP’s James says: “It was an extremely valuable and insightful experience, which has helped improve my understanding of the different competing factors at play within local planning authorities.”

All in all, a thoroughly worthwhile enterprise for everyone involved.