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Aspbury Planning win RTPI East Midlands Small Consultancy of the Year

Denise Knipe MSc MRTPI is Managing Director of Aspbury Planning, RTPI East Midlands Small Consultancy of the Year. 


In 1983 Anthony Aspbury, founded Aspbury Planning. Forty years on he is still an active Planner and our diverse team of nine come from different working backgrounds within the public and private sector. Collectively they bring 100 years of practical planning experience to the practice. 

We decided to enter the RTPI Awards for the Small Consultancy of the Year because we believe what we do can and does make a difference to the communities we serve. Planning, undeservedly, is often on the receiving end of bad press and can be a political hot potato. There will always be winners and losers! We like to share our success stories not only to raise the profile of Planning as a profession but to show how good development can improve the lives of the community and support the local economy in terms of job creation and service provision.

Applying for the award provided the opportunity to reflect upon what we do day to day as a planning practice and the skills that it takes to be a planner. The questions in the application allowed us to take a step back and reflect upon the criteria of the award. This included the imaginative approaches and techniques we use to achieve planning solutions, client satisfaction with the service provided, ability of the planners in our team, commitment to electronic data interchange (EDI) and commitment to staff development, business improvements and the contribution that we make to the profession and educational activities that we participate in.

Winning the East Midlands Regional Award for the Small Consultancy of the Year has given us all a major lift and morale boost. We know we are awesome but to be recognised for our contribution to the Planning profession by our Professional Institute is the highest accolade any Planner can receive.  It’s tough out there at the moment and winning the award has raised our profile and new enquiries are coming through the door.

One of the reasons we have made it to this four-decade milestone is that we believe we can make a difference to communities and environment through the work we are commissioned to do. Our team provide planning services to both the private and public sectors and understand the issues faced by political factors and an ever-changing policy landscape. Our practice has stood the test of time in the same way that development should.

We are committed to staff development and encourage all our professional employees to become chartered planners.  Currently we are mentoring three members of the team through the apprenticeship and licentiate routes. Our goal is to have all planners chartered in our team to propel us through the next 40 years! Applying for the award presented the opportunity to reflect on what we do and not taking it for granted. Winning the award was the icing on the cake and has given the team recognition and confidence for a bright future.

For more information about the Awards for Planning Excellence click here

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