The RTPI attended three days of the Labour Party conference in Manchester to lobby a range of influential front bench politicians on key planning issues. The RTPI team was led by Junior Vice President, Colin Haylock. The team attended more than a dozen fringe meetings and made points during questions and debate. Meetings and discussions were also held and included those with Nick Raynsford MP, the former planning minister and senior backbencher, Alison Seabeck MP, a Planning Aid England patron, John Healey MP, the recent planning and housing minister, and Hazel Blears, ex Communities and Local Government Secretary.
The RTPI is also hosting a series of its own fringe meetings at both the Conservative and Liberal Democrat party conferences, involving key figures from across both coalition partners and the wider planning and built environment sector. Next week John Howell MP, Chair of the Conservative 'Planning Sounding Board', Cllr Keith Mitchell CBE, Leader of Oxfordshire County Council, Roger Hepher, Head of Planning and Regeneration at Savills and Sue Percy of the RTPI will speak at our breakfast event at the Conservative conference in Birmingham on Wednesday 6th October.
Following this breakfast seminar a public fringe event will take place at lunchtime on the theme of 'Giving people a voice in planning', with speakers including Bob Neill MP, Minister for Local Government and Planning, Cllr Gary Porter, Chair of Environment Board, Local Government Association and Cllr Michael Chater, Chairman, National Association of Local Councils, and Sue Percy of the RTPI. Both events will be chaired by Richard Summers, Senior Vice President of the RTPI.
RTPI President Ann Skippers said: 'In the short time the coalition government has been in power we have taken significant steps to promote the positive role that planning and planners have in shaping the future. Through our conference programme we will continue to engage positively and constructively with the coalition.'
RTPI fringe events are being very generously sponsored this year by Savills.