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I'm a Planner (based in Scotland) AMA

35 replies

Plannergirl9 · 16/07/2018 19:59


Happy to answer any questions.

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ParisNext · 16/07/2018 20:01

What do you plan?! Is it like a prepper?

Plannergirl9 · 16/07/2018 20:04

I work for a local authority dealing with planning applications for homes, businesses etc

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Rememory · 16/07/2018 20:15

Are you allowed opinions or do you have to pass something if it ticks all the boxes. Even if you hate it?

Plannergirl9 · 16/07/2018 20:22

Rememory we have local planning policies we have to follow when determining an application. If we really don't like the design we can ask for a redesign and tell the applicant what we think would be better. Usually if it's really bad, there is objections by neighbors or the wider public.

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Plannergirl9 · 16/07/2018 20:22

Rememory sorry Blush I really should preview more.

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Rememory · 16/07/2018 20:31

Thanks Planner. Are you responsible for ensuring that a new build is eco friendly and if so do you think the regs are strict enough?

Plannergirl9 · 16/07/2018 20:47

Building Standards rather than Planning usually make sure that the eco- build standards are met. We generally look at eco based design rather than ensuring the regulations are met.

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titsbumfannythelot · 16/07/2018 21:20

What would you do to improve the planning system?

Plannergirl9 · 16/07/2018 21:31

titsbumfannythelot I'd make sure it was properly funded. At my local authority 60% of planners have either taken redundancy or moved on and haven't been replaced.

More often than not when a big application comes in for say 1000 houses on green belt. The local community objects, the councillors refuse and it goes to the DPEA (the government reporter) who then approve it. Council's don't have the resources to fight these appeals in terms of expert advice etc. Council's need to think about costs as if they lose they could be liable for £100,000s in costs.

Local commuities need more of a say in the appeals process as well.

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titsbumfannythelot · 17/07/2018 06:08

I agree with funding (user of the planning system), it's also very sad to see that amount of experience being lost from councils.

unadventuretime · 17/07/2018 11:15

Do you ever feel sorry for neighbours who you know will have their house affected by an extension but can't legally object? (I may have been in this position and was surprised about how few reasons to legally object there are in Scotland! The planning person even said to me that she didn't like what they were doing but unfortunately it was technically within the law).

Ginorchoc · 17/07/2018 11:17

Can you change from C1 to C2 under permitted development without planning permission? You can now in England and Wales however I wasn’t sure in Scotland

Plannergirl9 · 17/07/2018 14:05

@unadventuretime sometimes yes. It can be difficult for us as we have to use valid planning reasons for refusal as the applicant can appeal.

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Plannergirl9 · 17/07/2018 14:06

@Ginorchoc no you can change from C2 to C1 without requiring permission but not the other way around.

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Keeptrudging · 17/07/2018 14:11

Why did we get neighbour notification for my neighbour's new house, sited nowhere in sight of us (to which we didn't object), yet no notification at all when the initial application was rejected and he resited it to within metres of our boundary, which was approved? First we knew was when building work started, checked application online and sure enough, old application has disappeared, new one approved. It's too late to do anything.

CaliforniaLoove · 17/07/2018 14:11

I'm considering doing a RTPI accredited Spatial Planning Masters so I'm super happy to see this thread, are there jobs available at the moment and would you recommend it?

HirplesWithHaggis · 17/07/2018 14:15

How do you feel about the Scottish Government's blanket ban on planning permission for fracking?

QuietlyPondering · 17/07/2018 14:16

How did you get into this career and what qualifications would I need if I were to get into this job role? I come from a design / construction background but looking for a change.

thricethebrindledcat · 17/07/2018 14:30

Would you keep quiet about corruption, inducements and backhanders if any came to your notice?

thricethebrindledcat · 17/07/2018 14:30

*would you have to keep quiet (to keep your job, I meant)

GhostsToMonsoon · 17/07/2018 14:33

How much does the Scottish planning system differ from that in England?

Plannergirl9 · 17/07/2018 15:10

@Keeptrudging the council is responsible for neighbour notification for properties within a 20m boundary of the development site. I'm not sure way you were notified outside this.

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Plannergirl9 · 17/07/2018 15:12

@CaliforniaLoove I would definitely do it, I'm a bit biased as I really love my job. There are jobs out there depending if you want to work in the private or public sector.

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Plannergirl9 · 17/07/2018 15:13

@HirplesWithHaggis to be honest I'm not sure. On a day to day level it has not effect on me doing my job. I'm unsure that the environmental concerns have been satisfied enough as yet.

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Plannergirl9 · 17/07/2018 15:16

@QuietlyPondering I have planning undergraduate degree from a Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) affiliated University and I am fully chartered. Other people I work with have geography degrees and have done a planning post graduate diploma.

I would have a look at the RTPI website as it has details of the different routes to becoming a planner.

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