Planners Training Partnership

These courses have been designed exclusively with local authority planners in mind. They aim to give staff a clearer understanding of the relevant subject or process and an insight into the thoughts and considerations of the planning inspector. All of the courses have been designed to take place at the Council’s offices and would take around 3 hours; and are therefore, both cost effective and time effective. A CPD Certificate for the hours will be sent to all attendees after the course.

The courses are supported by a visual presentation of the subject matter and a detailed hand-out which will become a valuable reference document for day to day use. In addition there will also be an opportunity for questions and answers.

Training Course Summary

All of these courses are specifically targeted for local authority planners and give an insight into the procedure from their perspective. All courses are 3 hours in length unless otherwise specified. See below for an outline of the courses on offer.

This appeal procedure is the most common form handled by the Planning Inspectorate. The course content includes:

  • The “Procedure Rules” including timetable of submissions
  • Householder appeals
  • Identifying the issues
  • Section 78 Appeals – Preparation for and writing the appeal statement
  • Rebuttal statements
  • Site visit

This is the second most common form of appeal handled by the Planning Inspectorate. This course aims to give the tools and the confidence to present winning appeals hearings. The course content includes:

  • The “Procedure Rules” including timetable of submissions
  • The process of identifying the issues.
  • Preparation and writing of the appeal statement
  • The site visit
  • The day of the hearing

This procedure is the least common form of appeal handled by the Planning Inspectorate and therefore can be a daunting prospect, so this course provides an ideal introduction or reminder to the key elements of a successful appeal.

There are two parts to this course to completely cover the subject but each can be taken in their own right.

(Part I) – Writing Proofs of Evidence

The course content includes:

  • The “Procedure Rules” including timetable of submissions
  • Instructing counsel
  • Roles and duties of the expert witness
  • Contents and structure of the proof of evidence
  • Writing effectively
  • Fact and opinion

(Part II) – Giving Evidence

The course content includes:

  • Preparing for the inquiry
  • Structure of the inquiry
  • Role of the Inspector
  • Role of counsel
  • Role of the expert witness
  • Communicating your case

With householder appeals there is no opportunity to add to the officer’s report to either a senior officer with delegated powers or to the Planning Committee during the appeals process. This course sets out the main issues to consider, ensuring that the Inspector has the information necessary to determine the appeal and in your favour. The course content includes:

  • The structure and procedures of the Householder Appeals Service
  • Structure and content of the report
  • Dos and don’ts.

(2 ½ Hours)

This course is aimed at both householder appeals and Section 78 appeals. It examines the content of Circular 03/2009: Costs Awards in Appeals and Other Planning Proceedings, and the looks at basis for applications for costs. It provides information on avoiding costs against your Authority and sets out scenarios where an application for costs against appellants is appropriate. The course content includes:

  • Circular 03/2009
  • Avoiding awards of costs against the local planning authority
  • Applying for costs against the appellant(s)
  • Third parties

This course is aimed at providing information and background on the use of planning both householder appeals and S78 appeals. It looks at the new costs Circular and the basis for applications for costs. The course content includes:

  • The purpose of conditions and planning obligations
  • The three legal tests and six policy tests for conditions
  • The tests for planning obligations
  • Condition or planning obligation?
  • The types of condition e.g. conditions precedent, negative conditions.
  • Applications to vary or remove conditions
  • Appeals against conditions

(2 ½ Hours)

Green Belt policy is viewed in many circles as one of the most successful aspects of the planning system over the last 40 years or so. This course gives an insight into Green Belt Policy and what a Planning Inspector will be looking at in the event of an appeal against refusal of permission on Green Belt grounds. The course content includes:

  • Planning Policy Guidance Note 2: Green Belts
  • Purposes of including land in the Green Belt
  • Specific types of development in the Green Belt
  • The approach at appeals

What are the main issues in respect of the majority of planning applications? This course looks at these issues and also considers the weight to be given to other material considerations. It is aimed at junior planners and seeks to place all of numerous and sometimes competing considerations into some sort of perspective. The course content includes:

  • Main Issues
    • character and appearance, living conditions, design
    • rural issues, heritage issues, highway safety
    • biodiversity, flooding.
  • Relevant material considerations – what weight to give them?
  • The approach at appeals

Our Tutor

Our courses are run by Shaun Greaves BA (Hons), DipURP, MRTPI. As a former Planning Inspector himself Shaun has an intimate knowledge of the appeals system. In all he has over 20 years experience in both the public and private sectors having worked for local authorities as a senior planning officer and more recently on cases representing developers. He specialises in planning appeals, housing and commercial planning applications and environmental issues.


Some feedback from our recent courses

  • “Great to be able to ask questions and have the relevance to specialism being built in”
  • “A very informative insight into how inspectors consider appeals”
  • “Writing proofs of evidence and giving evidence at PIs – having a folder with notes/guidance for future reference should be very helpful.”
  • “The structure of the courses followed a natural progression and helped build an understanding. The advice was practical and could easily be applied in daily work.”

The fees shown are per course, not per person.

The courses are for 10 people, with additional people at a charge of £50 + VAT per person

Code Course and Price (Exc. VAT):

    WRA Written Representation Appeals £550
    AH Appeal Hearings £550
    PI-1 Public Inquiries (Part 1) – writing proofs of evidence £650
    PI-2 Public Inquiries (Part 2) – giving evidence at public inquiries £650
    RW Report Writing and the Householder Appeals Service £550
    AC Avoiding Costs in Planning Appeals £550
    CPO Conditions and Planning Obligations £550
    GB Green Belts £550
    PA Planning Applications – Main Issues and Material Considerations £550

*Although our courses are designed to be held in your own offices we do have a training facility in Bedford where we can host the course if this is your preference. Please contact us to discuss your requirements.

To book please contact:
AFA Planning Consultants
Tel: 01480 218211

PTP is offered by
GC Planning Partnership Ltd &
AFA Planning Ltd

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