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The best jobs in Town Planning and Local Authority Planning

The local authority planning industry is vast, made up of 5 main disciplines, Development Control, Policy, Enforcement, Conservation, and Urban Design.

Whether you enjoy the more strategic type of roles or are out in the field interacting with the public, we recruit for some of the best roles within the public Planning sector.

What makes them the best? Well, from the expertise required to their benefits packages, we’ve gone through our list of roles and broken down the day-to-day responsibilities as well as the qualifications you’d need to secure yourself a job in the industry.

So what are the best jobs within Town Planning?

Development Management Professionals – Graduate Planning Officer to Development Management Manager

Those that work within Development Control deal with a variety of applications across a number of positions. They have the essential role of ensuring the improvement of the built environment while protecting the character of the community. These professionals work with homeowners and developers to assess new planning applications in order to deliver new homes and changes to homes that work towards the government’s housing target while working to protect the greenbelt and sustain the local areas they work in.

Benefits: Interacting with the public to help shape the community and also aid in meeting Local and National targets, and usually a company phone, laptop, and mileage.

Qualifications needed:

  • A degree related to Town Planning such as Planning, Urban Planning, Regeneration, Environmental Planning etc.
  • Industry experience such as a work experience placement.
  • MRTPI Chartership.

Average salary: £18,000 to £65,000 / £18 – £75 per hour

“Planning is an industry of huge importance, it ensures that new homes are built, it protects our beautiful countryside, our historical monuments, it makes our cities and towns more environmentally friendly. A role in Planning can help you grow and define a community for years to come.”

Alex Tapley, Senior Consultant, Oyster Partnership

Planning Policy Professionals – Planning Policy Assistant to Planning Policy Manager

Policy professionals handle the more strategic points of the Town Planning industry. Every Local Authority will produce a Local Plan for their area, detailing housing, commercial, public and private development, including transport infrastructure, along with protection for the local environment. They comprise a series of documents that should set out clear guidance on what development will and won’t be permitted in your area. Policy Professionals are the ones that write the local plan.

Benefits: Helping to shape the community and the future of an area for years to come, also a company laptop, phone, mileage and attractive pension.

Qualifications needed:

  • A degree related to planning similarly, such as Transportation or Urban Studies
  • Industry experience by way of work experience or university placement.
  • MRTPI Charterships

Average salary: £18,000 to £63,000 / £20 – £55 per hour

Planning Enforcement Professionals – Junior Planning Enforcement Officer to Enforcement Manager

Enforcement professionals are those that investigate, consider and report on alleged breaches of planning control in order, as appropriate, to bring about formal enforcement action. These professionals need to have excellent people skills to delicately handle difficult and emotional situations. A law enforcement background can provide a good base of experience before making the step into Planning Enforcement.

Benefits: mobile phone, laptop, and mileage. You also are responsible for ensuring the laws of the Planning system are upheld and therefore preventing people from exploiting the system, so it is a vital part of the industry and a role to be proud of.

Qualifications needed:

  • No degree is necessary
  • PACE training is preferred, as well as previous law enforcement experience.
  • NAPE membership – National Association of Planning Enforcement
  • MRTPI Chartership

Average salary: £20,500 to £68,000 / £18 – £50 per hour

Conservation Professionals – Junior Conservation Officer to Conservation Manager

Those involved with Conservation ensure the heritage assets of the local authority are preserved, managed, enhanced, and promoted. Offering pre-application advice on the location, form, and character of developments that may affect listed buildings, conservation areas, scheduled monuments, or other heritage assets.

Benefits include: A fantastic interaction with historical monuments areas and listed buildings of importance. Assisting in keeping them safe and usable for future generations. Mobile phone, work laptop, and company car with permanent jobs. Also the ability to undertake some working from home.

Qualifications needed:

  • HND or degree in architecture, history, conservation, or similar subjects.
  • IHBC Chartership – Institute of Historic Building Conservation

Average salary: £22,000 to £60,000 / £22 – £50 per hour

Urban Design Professionals – Junior Urban Designer to Associate

Urban Designers create practical and visually pleasing places, including buildings, open spaces, and landscapes. Playing a vital part of a much bigger team, they help to bring viable developments to life, ensuring that the environments you create are both useful and enjoyable. The sector continues to grow at a steady rate in line with growing populations.

Benefits include: An extremely varied role with interactions with many other planning disciplines, a work mobile phone, and sometimes a company car with permanent positions. Ability to undertake some work from home.

Qualifications needed:

  • Degree in Architecture, Civil Engineering, Geography, or Human Geography.
  • Masters in Town Planning or similar Planning related Masters's degree such as Architecture.
  • Experience within a Planning Department is very useful before moving into the role.

Average salary: £22,000 – £55,000 / £25 – £45 per hour

Do you want a job within the town planning industry?

All of these disciplines are integral to the success of the industry on their own, however, it’s the union and collaboration between all of these departments and disciplines that ensure that we all have nice, safe, environmentally friendly, and productive places to live and work.

Please contact the Town Planning team for any information on contract or permanent jobs in Town Planning positions.

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