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Local Planning Authority of the Year 2024

Planning Authority of the Year Winner

Stevenage Borough Council

Stevenage DM planning team is a shining example of best practice in Local Government. Every single member of the team is thoroughly competent, dedicated and hard-working and displays a consistently positive attitude towards proposals and solving the issues that arise. The culture is one where the highest standards are treated as ordinary, and great pride is taken in getting things right. All the while, despite limited resources and high workloads, morale is high, and there is a sense of feeling sincerely valued by the most senior officers of the Council, where success is always recognised. 

Judges‘ comment: "The Stevenage Development Management team is known for its imaginative approaches, client focus, and effective responses to challenges, including climate change. Their passion and emotion shine through in their work, and their collaboration with the sector has been instrumental in regenerating the UK's original New Towns, especially during the pandemic. Despite being a small team, their values and behaviours are exemplary, and their methodical approach has garnered praise and ensured thorough debates at Planning Committee meetings".


Planning Authority of the Year Commended

Greater Cambridge Shared Planning

Formed in 2018, Greater Cambridge Shared Planning (GCSP) serves as the planning authority for Cambridge City Council and South Cambridgeshire District Council, handling around 6,000 applications yearly. Prioritising innovation, the team aims for sustainable and inclusive services, redesigning processes and enhancing digital experiences. Involved in prestigious projects, including world-class campuses and strategic planning, GCSP also nurtures talent through internal promotions and apprenticeships. Positioned at the forefront of government focus, Greater Cambridge stands ready for significant transformations, leading the charge in shaping the region's development landscape.

Judges‘ comment: "The team has successfully integrated two Council's planning functions, leading to service improvements and a renewed focus on quality management. They have shown a clear commitment to collaboration and innovation, as evidenced by their efforts in reducing backlogs and officer caseloads, as well as their initiatives, such as the Design Review Panel and Public Art Advisory Service. Their people-centered approach and talent development initiatives have been truly impressive".