RTPI Bulletin Board


The RTPI's PlanningMatters is a practical online learning resource for the planning professional. It provides accessible generic and specialist information in a planning context, allowing the user to apply their knowledge immediately as good working practice.

Planning modules range from introductory to specialist levels, reflecting a diverse experience range. The introductory modules are an excellent resource for newly-qualified or newly-promoted planners, overseas-trained planners and temporary or part-time staff. Experienced planners needing a quick top-up on a topic also find these modules useful. In an evolving programme, we continuously improve and update as well as adding to the number of higher-level and specialist planning modules to suit those with greater experience levels in the field. We use case studies for better understanding - if you have examples of good practice that you would like to promote, do get in touch - and have regular legal updates starting shortly.

The PlanningMatters project aims to produce material relevant to all UK planners. There are modules on Northern Ireland planning issues and we are working with the Scottish Executive on modules for planners working north of the border. If you are a subject expert in Scottish-related matters and are interested in contributing to this important project, please contact Stephen Wellings, publishing director (e-mail) stephen@echelonL.com for details and fee information. Authoring or reviewing modules count towards continuing professional development (CPD) points and authors are acknowledged.

In addition, there are more than 200 personal development modules covering the key issues affecting planners at all levels - interviewing, recruitment, management, communication, negotiation, time management and finance for non-financial managers. The website - www.planningmatters.co.uk - is available to users 24 hours a day and is accessible wherever the user can make use of a computer. The CPD log is easy to use and can record other CPD work, such as conferences. It is a great aid for appraisal and training programmes.

Corporate accounts can be bought for individual (1) or multi-user use on a pay-as-you-go basis. Organisations may purchase an annual licence offering a bespoke website and the right to unlimited module downloads. This is a practical option offering a 24-hour information resource and learning support to the widest number of people for a minimum per head outlay.

To open an account or licence, contact (e-mail) info@planningmatters.co.uk.

(1) Special RTPI member offer: free account worth £30 available until 30 April 2006 for RTPI members opening new individual accounts only.


Planning aid would like to thank everyone who has sent in their responses to the Planning Aid Volunteer Survey 2005. The response rate for both the member and volunteer survey has been positively overwhelming. The insights into volunteering and the experiences shared will be invaluable in helping us to review our volunteer programme and redirect our strategy.

Please direct any queries about the survey to: Shereen Shafi, Volunteer Development Officer, National Planning Aid Unit, Unit 419, The Custard Factory, Gibb Street, Birmingham, B9 4AA.


Anglia Polytechnic University announced on 5 October that it has changed its name to Anglia Ruskin University. Vice-chancellor Professor David Tidmarsh says that the history of the university goes back to 1858, when John Ruskin opened the School of Art in Cambridge, now part of the current campus.


Branch Planning Law Update 8 November. RTPI East of England Branch. Downing College, Cambridge. Cost: £70.00 + VAT (includes lunch and refreshments). Details: Tina Jessup (tel) 01359 252366; (fax) 01359 252364; (e-mail) eastofengland@rtpi.org.uk.


9 November. RTPI East and West Midlands and Landmark Planning. Leicester. Cost: £70 + VAT. Details: Helen Prangley (tel) 0116 254 7391.


11 November. RTPI South West Branch. National Maritime Museum, Falmouth. Details: Helen Clarke (tel) 01823 665532; (e-mail) southwest@rtpi.org.uk.


11 November. Room London Region, RTPI London Branch, Chartered Institute of Housing and Royal Institute of British Architects. London. Nick Raynsford MP will be speaking. Cost: from £70. Details: (e-mail) room@rtpi.org.uk.


14 November. Institution of Civil Engineers, RTPI, Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors and Local Government Association. London.

The first in a series of three conferences examining the land use response to flood risk. Brings together policy-makers, regulators, landowners, developers, ecologists and engineers to explore the issues, emerging policy and practical responses. Supported by DEFRA, the Environment Agency and the ODPM, it will provide in-depth analysis and opportunities for discussion. Reduced rates are available for RTPI members. Details: Dayle Long (tel) 020 7665 2313; (e-mail) conferences@ice.org.uk; see also the events diary via www.rtpi.org.uk.


15-17 November. The Prince's Foundation for the Built Environment. London.

Buildings and townscapes have been legible to the people who live, work and visit them for thousands of years. This course will explore the basic architectural literacy that enables students to read buildings and towns as connective systems rather than a collection of separate objects. The course will be led by Dr Keith Critchlow, professor emeritus of the Prince's School of Traditional Arts. Cost: £675 + VAT for all three days, pro rata for one or two days. Discounts are available for partners and limited full scholarships are also available. Details: Nanette Brew-Butler (tel) 020 7613 8548.


17 November. Yorkshire Branch with Hammonds. Leeds.

The annual planning law update is organised for the RTPI by planning solicitors Hammonds. The conference, designed for public and private sector practitioners throughout the north, is a premier event in the planning calendar and an ideal networking opportunity. The update is more relevant to the still new Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act 2004. There will also be topical issues from the planning law casebook. Details: Paula Nolan (tel) 0113 246 5714; (fax) 0113 246 8520; (e-mail) yorkshire@rtpi.org.uk.


23 November. RTPI North of England Branch. Hardwick Hall Hotel.

This event, arranged in collaboration with English Heritage, will cover organisational and procedural changes within the agency, an overview of the heritage review, preparation and review of conservation area appraisals, buildings at risk, the role of local strategic partnerships and the community. Details: Kay Lough (tel) 0191 222 5559; (e-mail) kay.lough@newcastle.ac.uk or northofengland@rtpi.org.uk.


28 November. RTPI East of England Branch. St Albans District Council. Cost: £70 + VAT (includes lunch and refreshments). Details: Tina Jessup (tel) 01359 252366; (fax) 01359 252364; (e-mail) eastofengland@rtpi.org.uk.

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