Skip to main content
Close Menu Open Menu

Lord Richard Best Awarded Honorary Membership by RTPI for remarkable commitment to planning

The Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) has announced the Honorary Membership of Lord Richard Best OBE DL FAcSS HonRIBA in recognition of his exceptional dedication to planning.

A life peer and cross bencher in the House of Lords, Lord Best has been a prominent figure in housing and planning-related organisations.

Lord Best graduated from Nottingham University in social policy before serving as director of British Churches Housing Trust. Serving as Director of the National Federation of Housing Associations from 1973 to 1988, he played a pivotal role in defending the role of not-for-profit housing during a crucial period of growth for housing associations in the UK. His leadership included championing planning policies that facilitated the creation of mixed and successful communities.

Moving on to become the CEO of the Joseph Rowntree Foundation (JRF) and Joseph Rowntree Housing Trust, Lord Best led the organisations from 1988 to 2006. His role included creating one of the largest funders of economic and social research in the UK, emphasising short policy and practice recommendations.

Appointed to the House of Lords in 2001 as one of the first 'people's peers,' Lord Best continued his advocacy for good housing and planning policy. He chaired numerous commissions on housing across the UK and served on various committees, including the House of Lords Built Environment Committee and the Affordable Housing Commission. His commitment extended to roles such as President of the Sustainable Energy Association and Co-Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Housing and Care for Older People.

Lord Best's contributions have earned him an OBE in the 1988 New Year Honours and honorary degrees from the Universities of Sheffield and York. His appointment as an Honorary Member by RTPI further solidifies his status as a leader in the planning profession.

The RTPI's decision to award Honorary Membership to Lord Richard Best highlights his exceptional impact on housing and planning policies, making a lasting contribution to the creation of sustainable and thriving communities.

On receiving the Honorary Membership, Lord Richard Best said, “I am delighted to become an Honorary Member of the RTPI.  I have worked with the Institute on legislative change on many occasions and strongly support their role as a tireless advocate and upholder of the professionalism of the sector.  I look forward to championing the RTPI’s endeavours not least in securing the resources planners need to undertake their vital work.”

Victoria Hills, Chief Executive of the RTPI said: "We are delighted to award Honorary Membership to Lord Richard Best in recognition of his exceptional contribution to the planning profession. His leadership and advocacy have been instrumental in shaping planning policies and practices that have had a positive impact on countless individuals and communities. We are delighted to welcome Lord Best into our professional family."

Back to top