Category: Housing and Planning

Heritage and Conservation dilemmas considered at Neighbourhood Planning Master Class

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On Thursday 16th Leeds Planning School’s masterclass on 16 November addressed the dilemmas for planners in making local character, heritage and sense of place central to their policies. The three speakers provided lots inspiration and ideas on heritage, design and articulating public concern to an audience of over 30 neighbourhood planning group members and built environment professionals.

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Latest Developments in Neighbourhood Planning – September’s RTPI Yorkshire and Leeds Beckett University Conference

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At our recent conference in collaboration with RTPI Yorkshire we welcomed six fantastic speakers to discuss the latest developments in Neighbourhood planning.   Opening the conference was Steve Hoey, Head of Neighbourhood Planning & Housing at Locality, who delivered a national overview of local planning uptake, what neighbourhood plans can achieve on the ground and why people should get involved.

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Investment Opportunity – Kirkstall Valley Development Trust

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This is a one-off chance to create a centre for sustainable education in two heritage mills based in 200 acres of green space in inner Leeds involving the universities, community and private sectors.

Kirkstall Valley Development Trust is one of Leeds most ambitious community driven projects. The Trust was set up in 2016 to develop a learning and leisure park over 200 acres of inner Leeds and to refurbish two heritage mills that lie at its heart. The Trust are working with Leeds City Council, University of Leeds, Leeds Beckett University, the Centre for Alternative Technology and local community groups to create:

  • A Centre for Future Cities (CFC) in Abbey Mills teaching practical and high level skills for sustainable living, focusing on water, energy, food and housing.
  • Environmental education particularly aimed at young people
  • Energy, growing and nature projects
  • On site power sourced from the river and solar panels
  • New parkland and wildlife areas
  • Improved access, with cycle and walk ways
  • Two refurbished heritage mills
  • Workspace for sympathetic small businesses
  • Flexible community space
  • A public café / bar, events and exhibition space

The CFC intends to be a genuine partnership space bringing together different sectors. It will focus on key areas of city life that need to be, and are being, transformed: transport, energy, food and nature, housing and work. It will do this by:

  • Providing real world opportunities for research and learning from an early stage in development
  • Co-creating and sharing knowledge and understanding between different groups – communities, enterprises, policy makers, researchers, learners
  • Being an exemplar of sustainable good practice in urban scale developments
  • Recognising challenges, evaluating and adapting

Further details can be found at the Trust’s website here

**INVESTMENT OPPORTUNITY**

During 2017 the Trust will undertake development work financed by our community share issue (running until April 20th) which will hopefully followed by a development grant from Heritage Lottery to pay for architectural and surveyor fees, project management, marketing and community engagement. Initially we are looking for investors via our crowdfunding page which can be accessed by clicking the link below.

We are very close to our initial £40,000 target so please do support us if you can!

Planning and Housing Strategies in the Combined Authorities – Leeds Planning Network Master Class 16 February

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Planning and housing strategies are essential for economic growth in the Combined Authorities and delegates at the Leeds Planning Network event in February had the opportunity to study three different approaches.
Speakers from Greater Manchester Combined Authority, South Yorkshire and Leeds City Regions provided much needed insight into the impact on planning and housing strategies on the city devolution agenda. They were ably chaired by consultant and researcher Jane Kettle, and addressed an audience of around 50 practitioners. Identifying a choice of strategies, the three speakers shared a vision that links housing growth to rising prosperity.

Anne Morgan, Planning Strategy Manager for Greater Manchester set out the benefits and challenges of the Combined Authority. The ability to produce a Greater Manchester spatial framework has made it possible to identify strategic growth areas, and plan collectively and consistently across ten local government areas. The spatial framework is supported by Mayoral compulsory purchase powers, and benefits from the potential to create Mayoral development companies. It has enabled the authorities to identify priorities, not only for economic growth but for the enhancement of green infrastructure. But it has also entangled the Combined Authority in public controversy over the loss of green belt land as tough decisions on housing allocations are made.
You can look at Anne Morgan’s  presentation here: Anne Morgan – GMSF Leeds .

While the route to becoming a Combined Authority has not been smooth in South Yorkshire, a collective approach to planning and housing has emerged from the bottom-up. A housing compact agreed between registered providers in South Yorkshire was hailed by Tony Stacy, chief executive of South Yorkshire Housing Association, a leap forward in co-operation and joint planning. The compact between local authorities and housing associations demonstrates a willingness to work collaboratively in meeting housing need. It has resulted in a joint bid for housing investment and plans to radically expand the number of new homes built. Housing – once excluded from the priorities of the city region – is now seen as a key part of the infrastructure of economic growth.
 You can look at Tony Stacy’s presentation here: Tony Stacey – Devolution, housing and Planning

An infrastructure investment framework has enabled the West Yorkshire Combined Authority to co-ordinate strategic planning in the Leeds city region and neighbouring areas. Colin Blackburn, Head of Infrastructure, stressed the need for a shared approach to planning and placemaking. While political structures evolve slowly, it is co-operation between authorities on development frameworks, land acquisition, site selection that makes combination possible. Significant challenges to housing delivery persist, and the Government White Paper provided few solutions, but agreement on strategy and consistency in approach are key achievements for West Yorkshire authorities.
You can find Colin Blackburn’s presentation here: Colin Blackburn RTPI – Planning and Housing Under Devo

 

By  Quintin Bradley

 

 

Planning Network Master Class: Planning and housing strategies in the combined authorities -16th February, Leeds

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Thursday 16th February 2017
17:30 – 19:30
The Rose Bowl (5th floor), Lecture Theatre RB538,
Leeds Beckett University,  Woodhouse Lane,
Leeds LS1 3HB

Master Class pic 16th Feb
What has been the impact of city devolution on planning and housing strategies? What new approaches have been taken by the combined authorities and what benefits have they seen?
 
Chair: Jane Kettle, Housing Consultant and Researcher
Our Panel:
 
Colin Blackburn, Head of Infrastructure & Investment, West Yorkshire Combined Authority
Anne Morgan, Planning Strategy Manager, Greater Manchester Planning & Housing Team
Tony Stacey, Chief Executive, South Yorkshire Housing Association
Followed by Q & A with the Panel

        Book Here!

Planning and the Future of Retail – Leeds Planning Network Masterclass

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Where is the retail market going now, in location, development and acquisition, what market trends are identified for new developments or retail opportunities, what is the impact on the high street, and the future for the independent retailer?

 

Chair: 

Cathy Barnes – Director and Professor of Retail Innovation, The Retail Institute, Leeds Beckett University

 

Panel:

Gerald Jennings – President Leeds Chamber and York & North Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce, formerly Portfolio Director, Land Securities (North & Scotland)

Julian Dobson – director Urban Pollinators Ltd, author of ‘How to Save Our Town Centres: a radical agenda for the future of High Streets’ published by Policy Press 2015

Followed by Q & A with the Panel

 

CLICK HERE TO BOOK

Upbeat community planners thank Leeds Beckett for practical help

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More than fifty volunteers from Leeds communities took part in an upbeat and enthusiastic neighbourhood planning workshop organised by Leeds Beckett University’ School of the Built Environment & Engineering on 30 January. They worked together to shape a vision for their communities helped by practical tips on plan-making and design from the university’s planning and housing lecturers. This was the second event in a programme of activities in which Leeds Beckett puts the skills and knowledge of its staff at the service of neighbourhoods in Leeds. Feedback from the workshop was unanimously positive and delegates went away with fresh ideas on how to deal with the thorny issues they face in the community.

Quintin Bradley, Senior Lecturer in Planning at Leeds Beckett University, said: “Sixty communities in Leeds, and many others across Yorkshire, are setting out a vision for how their local community will develop. They need technical assistance and expert advice to do this neighbourhood plan. Leeds Beckett is making sure they get the help they need.” The workshop was organised by Leeds Planning Network, one the new research clusters set up by the School of the Built Environment and Engineering supported by the Centre for Knowledge Exchange.

Delegates heard from Jeff Newton and John Steel, community volunteers in Boston Spa who are in the final stages of their neighbourhood plan. They talked about their innovative new designs for the high street and plans for a renewable energy scheme. Jeff and John stressed that plan-making was hard work but they were enthusiastic about the future and the improvements they wanted for their village (see their presentation below).

Detailed guidance on the legal aspects of plan-making was given by Bob Pritchard, specialist planning lawyer and guest lecturer at Leeds Beckett. He spelled out what a neighbourhood plan could achieve and what should go in it. This was vital information for delegates learning to write planning policy that will guide development in their community over the next twenty years (see his presentation below).

Following this, there were three discussion groups each focusing on themes requested by delegates at the previous workshop. Will Sparling, PhD candidate at Leeds Beckett gave help to inner-city communities working together on common problems. Planning lecturer, Harvey Pritchard gave advice on planning for infrastructure, while Jenny Fisher, principle urban designer for Leeds City Council helped delegates work on improving the look and feel of their neighbourhoods. Delegates were full of praise for the Leeds Beckett event and gave the organisers many more ideas for future workshops.

Copy of Leeds City Council “Neighbourhood Planning & Design Issues” Document to download

The next neighbourhood planning workshop is 16 April 2016 but in the mean time Leeds Planning Network will be holding two planning masterclass events on Tuesday 1st March (Details here)  and Thursday 17th March (Details here

 

University planning experts to help neighbourhoods shape their future

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Planning experts at Leeds Beckett University will be working with community groups across Leeds to help them shape the look and feel of the places they live.

In a series of workshops, Leeds Beckett’s planning department within the School of Built Environment will be working with neighbourhoods to help them plan their future and have a say in the development decisions that affect them. The workshop series is free for neighbourhood planning groups in Leeds.

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The first workshop will be held on Saturday 7 November at Old Broadcasting House, Woodhouse Lane from 10am onwards and will showcase the experiences of neighbourhood planning groups in the city on the theme of ‘turning your ideas into reality’. The workshop will start with presentations from groups in Leeds at an advanced stage in neighbourhood planning followed by small group workshops to encourage communities to learn from each other and share experiences.

Planning lecturers and practitioners will be on hand to provide ideas and advice on policy, planning law and development plans and to point groups in the best direction. The workshop will highlight what it is possible to achieve through neighbourhood planning and suggest other options available to communities to help them meet their goals.

Hosting the workshop is Senior Lecturer in Planning and Housing, Dr. Quintin Bradley. He said “This is an opportunity for academics at Leeds Beckett University to lend our expertise and experience and help local communities plan their future. We can provide impartial advice that neighbourhoods can draw on to help them realise their ideas. This is the first of a series of workshops that will deal with the core practical issues facing neighbourhoods and planning experts will be on hand to give help where it’s needed most.”

Speakers confirmed so far include:-

Jill Bolton – Linton Neighbourhood Plan,

John Unwin / Doug Morley – Kippax Neighbourhood Plan

Dawn Carey Jones – Hyde Park Neighbourhood Plan

Howard Bradley – Seacroft Neighbourhood Plan

 
Bookings can be made via the eventbrite page at the following link