The Friday Five 28.08.20

Published on: 28 Aug 2020

A round-up of five of the best jobs on Planner Jobs this week.


Location: West Hertfordshire (the council is based in Hemel Hempstead)

The job: “We are seeking to appoint a lead planning officer to our development management team. This is a challenging post, and we are looking for candidates who can problem solve and negotiate positive outcomes. 

“Successful candidates will take responsibility for efficient management, and processing of a caseload of major planning applications and related determinations, notices and orders through all stages of the development process from pre-application advice, statutory process and delivery, in accordance with performance targets and standards. This will include working within Planning Performance Agreements, preparing reports for Committee and attending Development Management Committee (during evenings, as required) and preparing statements and proofs of evidence for appeals.”

The Magic Roundabout [square]Fun fact: The Plough roundabout in Hemel Hempstead, also known - inevitably - as ‘the Magic Roundabout’, is either the best or the worst in Britain, depending on your point of view. Opened in 1973, it is in fact a series of six mini-roundabouts within a large circle, each marking a junction where a main road meets the roundabout. Radically, the roundabouts-within-a-roundabout enable  traffic to flow in both directions around the main roundabout. To complicate matters further, only five of the exists are now available for use, one of them having been closed because of an unstable building that spanned the entire road. Though the building was demolished the exit was not reopened - which apathy kind of sums up how people seem to feel about the whole construction.
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Location: Wakefield, West Yorkshire

The job: “The successful candidate will be able to demonstrate the ability to deal efficiently and effectively with alleged unauthorised planning breaches and take appropriate action where necessary. Candidates will be expected to demonstrate investigative work involving a range of enforcement complaints and matters. You will have excellent communication and organisational skills and be able to interpret and apply planning policy and legislation to deal with the situation in hand.”

Wakefield town centre [square]Fun fact: The Ridings Shopping Centre in Wakefield, opened in October 1983, is considered the first of its kind in the UK - and indeed Europe - and has served as a template for a number of subsequent shopping centres. 

Apparently inspired by the buildings that Wakefield’s chief planning officer Peter Spawforth had seen in North America, the covered centre contains multiple levels all accessible from the street, a food court (a new feature in the UK) and the first glass wall climber lift which was a copy of those in the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Atlanta.

The Ridings Centre won the European Shopping Centre of the Year in 1984 - and for the next decade. Read more here.

Find out more and apply


Location: Great Yarmouth, Norfolk

The job: “Great Yarmouth Borough Council is generating an ambitious programme of regeneration and development, with challenges ranging from seafront and town centre transformation to addressing brownfield site development. The prospective candidate for this role will be expected to engage with these challenges.

“You will be responsible for the day-to-day management of development management staff, delivery of the development management function and contributing to the wider departmental and corporate objectives. Your leadership style will help to create an environment in which the planning service can innovate, develop and flourish.”

Great Yarmouth Pleasure Beach [square]Fun fact: Great Yarmouth Pleasure Beach has one of only two wooden roller coasters still operational in the UK, and one of just eight in the world. Opened in 1932, the ‘scenic railway’ had been the main attraction at the 1929 Paris Colonial Exposition and was bought by the Pleasure Beach’s then owner Pat Collins. Like other ‘scenics’ of its period, the railway’s wooden structure was originally clad in plaster shaped and painted to look like mountains, complete with castles, so the rider would feel they travelling through an Alpine landscape.

The ride is 140 metres long, 30 metres wide and an impressive 982 metres in length, with its highest point reaching 21m above ground level. It requires a brakeman to travel on the ride itself to control the movement of the train as it climbs and plunges through the railway’s nine drops. It’s so rare now that it was made a grade II listed building in 2016. Read the listing here.

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Location: Dartford, Kent

The job: “This is a new post and we are looking for a qualified planner to fill this role in order to provide planning advice to the enforcement team together with the necessary experience to determine the more complex enforcement-related planning applications.

“Leading and managing a recently expanded team and working closely with development management, you will ensure that unplanned development does not undermine our aims. We have a number of complex cases to resolve so a good track record of dealing with these is a must. A good knowledge of planning legislation is required as well as a strong understanding of the tools and processes that can be employed in planning enforcement.”

Beatles album cover [square]Fun fact: Dartford was the birthplace of English pop artist Peter Blake, perhaps most famous for painting the iconic Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band album cover for The Beatles. Born in 1932, Blake attended the Gravesend Technical College in the neighbouring borough and; alongside the likes of David Hockney, became a key member of a post World War II art movement that fused imagery from popular culture with more vaunted ‘fine’ art.

In Blake’s case, he became noted for a collage style that employed adverts, music hall entertainments and even images of wrestlers (he famously painted Kendo Nagasaki). By the 60s he was completely integrated into British pop culture and over the next decades also painted record sleeves for The Who, Paul Weller and Band Aid, song others. He was knighted in 2002 for services to art.

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Location: Bainbridge, Wensleydale, North Yorkshire

The job: “As a senior planning officer, you will support the delivery of our development management service and help to promote sustainable development within the National Park.

“You will negotiate positive design solutions, provide professional advice on a broad spectrum of planning issues, manage applications efficiently and present your recommendations clearly.

Reporting to the principal planning officer, you will:

    •    Take on an interesting caseload
    •    Handle applications and appeals in line with our procedures and practices
    •    Help to monitor sites and the delivery of the enforcement service
    •    Give evidence at public inquiries and hearings.”

Red squirrel [square]Fun fact: The Yorkshire Dales National Park is a wildlife haven with a wide range of protected and rare species found within its habitats. There are more than 120 spies which are national priorities for conservation action, including red squirrels, peregrine falcons and lady’s slipper orchids.

The Dales are also home to to the rare brown argus and pearl-bordered fritillary butterflies, around 1,000 species of moth, the brown long-eared bat (which has ears three-quarters the length of its body) and a species of moss (Nowell’s limestone moss) that is unique to the Dales themselves and found nowhere else in the world. You can read more about nature in the Dales here.

Find out more and apply 

Image credits | T J Mortimer CC-BY-SA (Magic Roundabout), Shutterstock, iStock