The Conduct and Discipline Panel is responsible for investigating any alleged breach of the Code of Professional Conduct on behalf of the RTPI. The Panel is empowered to decide whether a breach of the Professional Code of Conduct has occurred and, where it has, to discipline the member.
The Panel is appointed by the Board of Trustees and is comprised of between six and eight members as follows:
- Chartered Town Planners
- at least one Legal Member or Legal Associate
- at least one independent person
It meets up to four times a year.
The Panel Members are:
Gordon Halliday MA MPhil MRTPI has been a Chartered Town Planner since 1981. He was employed by Northumberland County Council for 35 years of which 19 years were spent in various senior management roles, including Chief Planning Officer. Gordon retired from local government service in 2010. He has specialised in minerals and waste planning for much of his planning career and has been a member of a number of regional and national working groups and panels related to this specialist activity. For the last 5 years Gordon has been a sole practitioner whose commissions have included the investigation of complaints of maladministration for a local planning authority, projects for the Planning Advisory Service and appearing as an expert witness at public inquiries on opencast coal and shale gas. Gordon Halliday is the Chair of the Conduct and Discipline Panel.
Mr John Craig BA (Hons) Planning qualified as a planner in 1987 from Glasgow University. He has worked for a number of different urban and rural local authorities for the last 29 years focussing on a wide range of planning policy and implementation matters. He has extensive knowledge and experience of preparing Local Plans, Structure Plans and other sub regional and regional planning strategies. He currently leads a combined planning and housing strategy & development team at East Riding of Yorkshire Council. John Craig is the Vice Chair of the Panel.
Mr Alan Hubbard BA (Hons), MRTPI became a Chartered Town Planner in 1984. He retired in August 2016 having previously worked as a Land Use Planning Adviser for 14 years for National Trust providing comprehensive planning advice in respect of the Trust's development proposals as well as in response to Development Plans and planning applications in North West England. Previously, he was employed for 25 years in Local Government in Greater Manchester, the last 15 years as Team Leader for Development Management in the southern part of Trafford.
Mr Paul Barkley LL.B. (Hons.), M.Sc., LARTPI, Solicitor (non-practising) qualified as a solicitor in 1986 initially working in the field of Family Law and subsequently Child Protection with South Glamorgan County Council. He joined local government in 1996 dealing with litigation matters in the fields of Housing, Environmental Health, Licensing and Planning, subsequently specialising in the latter, particularly enforcement and acting as advocate at public inquiries. This led to an increasing involvement in planning matters generally within the Local Planning Authority including advising members at Planning Committee. In 2006 Paul was appointed to The Law Society's Planning Law panel. Since 2010, Paul has operated a private sector Planning Law consultancy business. Paul is the Legal Associate member of the Panel.
Mr Tim Smith LLB (Hons) is a solicitor and partner in a City law firm, having trained and qualified with a regional practice. He has specialised in Planning & Environmental Law for over 20 years. Although all of his career has been spent in private practice he has advised both private and public sector clients on a range of planning matters including planning litigation in the Courts. He has been a member of the Law Society's Planning & Environmental Law Committee since 2009 and a member of the Law Society's Solicitor Judges Division since 2014. He also sits on the Joint Tribunal of the Law Society and Bar Council. In 2013 he was appointed as a part-time Tribunal Judge in the First Tier Tribunal (Social Entitlement Chamber) where he handles a range of social security appeals. Tim is a lay member of the Panel.
Miss Lauren Thompson MA Planning MRTPI. Lauren Thompson BA (Hons) MA MRTPI became a Chartered Town Planner in 2015 and has worked as a planning practitioner since 2003. Lauren has worked in both the public and private sectors as well as undertaking work on a voluntary basis throughout her career. Lauren worked in a Cheshire based Council's Development Management team for almost ten years before specialising in advising private sector clients on retail and housing developments acting on behalf of several large planning consultancies. She now leads the Planning and Development team for a small ethical house builder based in North Wales. Lauren has also sat on the RTPI's Membership Assessment Advisory Panel which governs the membership process for the RTPI. Lauren acts as a volunteer for Planning Aid and continues to be part of the North West Planning Aid Task Force which coordinates volunteer activities across the North West.
Mr Antony Fussey MRTPI (Rtd). Tony Fussey BSc (Hons) MRTPI (Rtd) became a Chartered Town Planner in 1979. He is originally from the East Riding but armed with a geography degree from the LSE, moved west to work in the West Riding County Council's development plans section. After reorganisation in 1974 he took up development control with Kirklees Council and ended 25 years in local government as Area Planning Officer with Malvern Hills District Council. He then joined the Planning Inspectorate, retiring as a senior inspector in 2016 after 20 years. He was involved in a wide range of local plans and appeals, as well as the training of new inspectors, but specialised in enforcement and gipsy/traveller cases. He was appointed as a magistrate in 1979 and is now one of the longest serving in the country
Time taken to investigate and determine a complaint
The time taken will depend on the complexity of the case, the amount of documentation to be studied, the timings of the Panel every 3-4 months and whether an appeal is made against the decision of the Panel. Investigations therefore generally take at least 6 months before a decision can be reached.
If the Panel finds that a member has breached the Code, the Institute may:
- Warn the member as to his or her future conduct;
- Reprimand the member;
- Suspend the member's membership of the Institute; or
- Terminate the member's membership.
What happens depends on the severity of the breach of the Code, and any mitigating factors with the particular case. The Panel will also decide whether to name a member in any publicity it makes when a breach of the Code is found.
Further information on professional standards and making a complaint is available online or by email.