DCLG boosts bursary level

The DCLG is increasing its number of bursaries to aspiring planners by nearly 40 per cent to encourage the next generation of talent joining the profession.

The government revealed that bursaries will rise from 105 to 145 a year in September in its response to the Commons communities and local government select committee's planning skills report.

The DCLG will also consider a national advertising campaign similar to those used for teaching. It has pledged to work with the Improvement and Development Agency and the RTPI to prepare recruitment literature and marketing strategies. It also wants councils to forge stronger links with universities to promote planning as a career choice.

The government's response said: "We will learn from the experience of other professions that have used advertising to recruit more people, such as teaching. We will assess the costs involved and, if we are satisfied that it would be value for money, will consider an appropriate programme for planners."

DCLG chief planner Steve Quartermain said: "We have already taken significant action to boost planning skills, including funding 513 bursaries for students to train as planners with more than 300 extra to follow."

- See Analysis, page 10.

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