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PR 48 - Planning Convention defies economic gloom

14 July 2008

The RTPI Convention has defied the gloom of the credit crunch to attract more than 730 attendees, which is an increase on last year.

The event, which was held at the QE2 Centre in Westminster on Thursday the 10th and Friday the 11th of July, was used by Communities Secretary, Hazel Blears, to announce new guidelines on retail development. It also acted as a forum for discussion on issues like crime reduction, climate change, urbanisation, housing and planning education. More than 40 exhibitors also attended the event which boasted a line-up of speakers including Hazel Blears, Colombia's Ambassador to the US, Carolina Barco Isakson, CLG Chief Planner Designate, Steve Quartermain, Royal Institution Director, Baroness Susan Greenfield and Sir Terry Farrell.   

RTPI Director of Programmes and Services, Debbie Sorkin, said; \"To attract more delegates than last year was extremely pleasing given the current state of the economy and the down-turn in the housing market. I think the positive response reflects the strength of this year's speaking line-up as well as the fact that planners are committed to sharing ideas and developing their professional knowledge.

\"Preparations are already underway for the 2009 Convention, which will be slightly earlier in the year on the 17th to 19th of June. If anyone has any suggestions for next year's event or would like to pass comment on this year's Convention please get in touch.\"    

For further information or to arrange an interview please contact:

Dale Atkinson, RTPI Communications Manager, 0207 929 9479 dale.atkinson@rtpi.org.uk

Notes to Editors:

For more information on the RTPI National Convention or photographs of the event or speakers please contact the RTPI press office.

Those wishing to provide feedback on this year's Convention can do so via Debbie.sorkin@rtpi.org.uk

The Royal Town Planning Institute is a dynamic organisation leading the way in the creation of places that work now and in the future. We understand that just as people develop places, so places develop people.  We are committed to the enhancement of our natural and human environment, using spatial planning to manage competing pressures on our built environments and the very real effects on our space.  Through our 20,000 members, we constantly seek to create areas and places in which people want to live and work.

For further general information, visit the RTPI website at: www.rtpi.org.uk

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