Head of Planning & Major Infrastructure

Swindon, Wiltshire
£65,000 pa
06 Jun 2019
23 Jun 2019
Contract Type
Full Time
Housing, Other, Planning


From national parks to world heritage sites, countryside to coast, the National Trust looks after some of the nation’s best loved landscapes and historic properties. We have ambitious plans to do even more for the places in our care, working together and with others to protect and enhance them long into the future, and to deliver ongoing public benefit.

We're looking for a Head of Planning and Major Infrastructure to help us take a proactive and strategic approach to achieving our aims, working with conservation and community organisations, developers and across Government at all levels.

We want an inspirational leader, a skilled negotiator who works well with others. Who recognises that growth and change are often inevitable, but that they need to be delivered effectively, in ways which protect and secure benefits for conservation.

This is an opportunity for you to reframe the National Trust’s approach to planning.

What it's like to work here

Heelis, the Central Office for the National Trust, is situated in Swindon, Wiltshire, and houses approximately 700 staff from across the Trust’s directorates, including the Executive team and the Director General. The building was designed to be highly sustainable and has won several nationally-recognised awards; the open-plan offices and friendly social spaces help us to foster a truly collaborative working environment.

We're well-placed, with the railway station and ample parking nearby, a shopping outlet on the doorstep and the town centre only a 10-minute walk away. And our in-house café provides us with delicious meals and snacks every day.

What you'll be doing

Working with a high-performing team of dedicated regional planners, you'll be the professional lead for a community which spans England, Wales and Northern Ireland. You’ll support delivery across a wide range of land and marine planning objectives, from significant national programmes like HS2 to our own conservation and development activity at property.

You’ll develop a proactive, organisation-wide approach to major infrastructure, putting the focus on strategic outcomes and positive opportunities for enhancement. And you’ll lead a step-change in the Trust’s engagement with the planning system, ensuring we have the culture, capability and capacity to influence upstream through effective information gathering and engagement at local and national levels.

You'll be developing strong relationships across the organisation as well as externally, with local authorities and central government, helping to shape local and national planning policies and ensuring that we have the right framework in place to achieve our aims. And you’ll champion a learning culture, bringing together regional and property teams, learning from external partners, sharing common challenges and experience.

Who we're looking for

To succeed in this role you will need:

  • Relevant professional qualification in planning – and membership of the RTPI or similar.
  • Experience of working in the context of major infrastructure proposals
  • Exceptional leadership skills, ability to motivate and inspire others
  • Creativity and innovation, ability to lead and drive cultural change
  • A record of creating and driving strategic approaches across an organisation
  • Stakeholder management with influencing and negotiating skills
  • Experience and understanding of the application of conservation principles in heritage and landscape settings
  • In depth knowledge and experience of sustainable development, urban, rural and environmental issues


Benefits include flexible working whenever possible plus free parking at most locations. You’ll be entitled to discounts in high street stores and cinemas, National Trust shops and NT cafes, and have free entry to NT properties for you, a guest and your children (under 18).

Your health and wellbeing is important to us and is supported through generous annual leave and the option to buy additional days (minimum contract length applies), a cycle to work scheme, subsidised health cash plan and confidential access to a free support service 24 hours a day should you need it.

Your future financial health is helped by an employer matched - up to 10% of basic salary - contributory pension scheme and you can further your career with training and development tailored to you.

All of this and the opportunity to give something back to your community with up to 5 days of paid volunteering per year!


To find out more and apply, please click the Apply button below.

Closing Date: 23 June 2019