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RTPI_PE_Reg _SW_18_GENERALRTPI SW Awards for Planning Excellence 2018

Do you consider that a particular planning project is an example of best practice and demonstrates the positive and critical role planning and planners play in place making? If so, enter it into the RTPI SW Awards for Planning Excellence 2018 launched on the 1st June! There is no fee involved and the reward could be a judgement that the project, be it a completed scheme, a plan/strategy or an innovative consultation exercise, is an 'Example of Planning Excellence in the South West' and the recipient of an Award or Commendation.    

Recent overall winners have included the Bath Water Space scheme for the renovation of the River Avon/Kennet and Avon corridor either side of the city (2017), the Plymouth City Council's 'Plan for Homes' (2016), the Exe Estuary Trail (2015) and the Hudson/Manser Streets Cheltenham Housing Regeneration Scheme (2014) Many other schemes received Awards and Commendations.

Awards will be opening for Entry on the 1 June 2018 and closing 20 July 2018.  Details will be published here shortly.  In the meantime register your interest to 

Awards for Planning Excellence Judging Panel

We are on the look out for RTPI Members, Retired RTPI Members or Young Planners to join the Judging Panel for the 2018 Awards.  If you are interested in finding out more, please contact

The SW Awards for Planning Excellence 2018 are sponsored by

 WYG Logo

Stride Treglown Logo _Town Planning _Cool Grey 11

RTPI SW Awards for Planning Excellence 2017

The RTPI South West Awards operate in conjunction with the RTPI National Awards and identify and highlight examples of planning excellence in the South West. The awards promote good practice across the wide range of activities in which professional planners are involved. The standard of submissions for the 2017 Awards was the highest in the 25 years of the RTPI South West Awards.

South West Judging is now complete and the South West winners were announced on the 5 May 2017.  A presentation to the winners is taking place in June at Bath Guildhall.

Overall Winner and Winner of the Excellence in Spatial Planning Category - The Water Space Project Bath

The Water Space Project, which is aiming to improve and encourage development along waterways across the Bath area, has won the topWater Space award at this year's Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) South West Regional Awards for Planning Excellence. The RTPI South West represents more than 1,500 professional planners across the region.

The Water Space Project has established the data and information required to develop an evidence based plan for investment to revitalise the river and canals across Bath. It covers 16 miles of waterway along the River Avon and Kennet and Avon Canal from Dundas through to Bath and Hanham. The research has focused on 5 key themes:

  • assets (land ownership);
  • moorings/boating;
  • environmental issues;
  • regeneration/development opportunities and leisure
  • recreation and leisure

The Water Space Project is a partnership between Bath and N.E. Somerset Council, the Canal & River Trust, the Environment Agency and Wessex Water. Major initiatives were undertaken to consult stakeholders, including the boating community moored on the canal.

The RTPI South West Chair, David Lowin comments "The Water Space Project is an excellent example of partnership working to realise the potential for future investment along these waterways whilst balancing economic and environmental issues. An impressive feature is the extensive consultation undertaken, in particular with the boating community. This study, and its evidence base, will be a significant factor in the establishment of future planning policies and the determination of planning applications in and around the city of Bath".

Category winners, highly commended and commended:

Excellence in Spatial Planning

Winner: Water Space Project (Bath) submitted by Bath and N.E. Somerset Council

Highly Commended:

  • Chaddlewood, Plympton, Plymouth submitted by Barratt David Wilson Homes and Plymouth  City Council
  • Tadpole Garden Village, Swindon submitted by Crest Nicolson
  • Torpoint Vision Torpoint,Cornwall submitted by Jillings Heynes Planning
  • Stroud District Local Plan, Stroud submitted by Stroud District Council
  • Victory Oak Housing, St Leonards, Ringwood submitted by Sovereign Housing Association

Commended: Bristol Temple Quarter Spatial Framework submitted by Bristol City Council (City Design Group)

Excellence in Planning Delivery

Joint Winners:

  • Old Railway Quarter (Swindon) submitted by Swindon Borough Council and Thomas Homes

Old Railway Quarter

  • Stafford Close Housing (Christow, Devon) submitted by Dartmoor National Park Authority

Stafford Housing

Commended: Salcombe Gin Distillery, Salcombe, Devon submitted by Adams +Collingwood, Architects, London

Excellence in Planning Decision Making

Winner: Army Basing Programme (Salisbury Plain) submitted by Defence Infrastructure Organisation, Wilshire Council and WYG

Arm Basing


  • Using Landscape Character Assessments in Neighbourhood Planning submitted by Fiona Fyffe Associates Ltd
  • Plymouth Strategic Landscape and Seascape Character and Sensitivity Study submitted by Plymouth City Council

The Winners for the RTPI South West Awards for Planning Excellence 2016

Winner:  Plan for Homes  submitted by Plymouth City Council.


The Court House, Plymouth (conversion of the former Greenbank prison to provide 65 self contained student flats + a new Aldi Store) submitted by Plymouth City Council.

The Octagon Chapel, Bath (conversion to a restaurant) submitted by Bath and NE Somerset Council.

Paignton Strategic Masterplans (Paignton Town Centre and Collaton St Mary) (submitted by Stride Treglown)

The  2016 Awards were sponsored jointly by WYG and Stride Treglown.     

The Winners for the RTPI South West Awards for Planning Excellence 2015

The RTPI Awards for Planning Excellence highlight exceptional examples of planning and celebrate the contribution that planners and planning make to society. South West Entries recieved into the National Awards are judged independantly in a seperate awards programme by a dedicated committee of judges with a multitude of planning experience. The South West submissions are 
assessed within two categories:

a) Schemes on the Ground, and
b) Other Planning Work (i.e. strategies, policy documents, action plans).

Winners were presented with their certificates on Tuesday 28 July at Custom House, Exeter Quay. Photos are available here

Read the news release here

The Results

Overall Winner of the RTPI SW Awards for Planning Excellence 2015 and also the Award for the Joint Best Entry in the 'Schemes on the Ground' category.

Exe Estuary Trail Project

Exe Estuary Trail Presentation 

From left to right: Simon Lamb (Parsons Brinckerhoff), Roger North (Parsons Brinckerhoff), Mike Deaton (Devon County Council), Hayley Stokes (Devon County Council), Councillor Stuart Hughes (Cabinet member responsible for Cycling – with the trophy), The Chairman of the Council – Councillor Christine Channon (with the plaque) and obviously Paul Barnard, (Assistant Director, Strategic Planning & Infrastructure, Plymouth City Council (Panel Chair)






THE PLYMOUTH PLAN  Award for the best entry in the 'Other Planning Work' category


HANHAM HALL  Highly Commended

J3 DEVELOPMENT Award for the Joint Best entry


A word from our sponsors:

"WYG  a consultancy with a significant national planning business are honoured and pleased to have been associated with this prestigious completion for many years, this year in particular the standard of entries was very high, and whilst all the schemes and plans were very different they all exhibited planning excellence as the short listing and being winners in the national awards testifies. The winning scheme, the Exe estuary trail, exemplifies partnership working, tenacity, and considerable successful consultation, to produce an important leisure and tourist facility"

David Lowin MRTPI, Director of Planning, WYG

RTPI South West would like to thank WYG for their continued support and sponsorship of our annual awards programme.

Past Awards