December 23rd, 2019

Hiring a consultant Chartered Town Planner

Unlocking the black box of planning to gain the edge you need.

Unfortunately much confusion surrounds planning. Not surprisingly therefore, people often ask us ‘what is it you do?’ or ‘what value will you add to my project?’.

There is a common misunderstanding that all that is needed for a planning application to be approved is the submission of a form and a set of drawings. This means that people often gravitate towards appointing plan-drawers or Architects as their planning agents.

Whilst drawings are clearly important to illustrate proposals, those proposals themselves must hit the planning mark. Knowing what you are aiming at, or put another way, what the rules of the game are, means you stand a better chance of success. Otherwise you are just shooting in the dark.

All our planners are Chartered at Northern Planners. Our skill is in identifying the planning criteria on which a project will be judged, moulding the project to fit and ensuring all the information necessary to satisfy the decision-maker is provided. We do this in a cost-effective manner, getting things right first time.

Red Adair, the famous oilrig firefighter once said ‘if you think it’s expensive hiring a professional with real expertise to help you, wait until you have tried an amateur’.

In our work, we often come across agents who are not qualified Planners and don’t even understand just the planning criteria that a ‘design’ needs to address, let alone those that are essential to all the other parameters of a project. Occasionally, they can hit lucky and their under-informed applications gain permission.

In these cases though, the agents concerned do not understand why and therefore are not able to replicate this success on future projects. Their clients are also unaware of the randomness of the approach of such agents, which is most unfair when good money is being paid for their services.

Sadly with planning, you often only get one chance to tell your story well so that it is credible. If a case is poorly handled in the initial stages by non-experts, it can be often difficult to extricate clients from any mess that may result. Being on the back foot is not where anyone wants to be.