Ian - Senior Planning Manager

CALA Homes (SHC) Ltd

What does your department do?

The Planning team is ultimately responsible for obtaining the best possible planning permissions in the quickest possible timeframes.

Planning is involved from the start of the Land/Planning process right through to the completion of the project. We input into the initial site appraisals; undertake pre-applications with the Council; submit and progress planning applications; & engage with key stakeholders. Upon receipt of planning permission, we discharge planning conditions and remain on hand to help the site and technical teams if changes/amendments to the scheme are necessary.

What do you do on a day-to-day basis?

Day-to-day life in Planning is never dull and is extremely varied. In the space of a single day, we can spend time liaising with architects, consultant teams, Planning Officers, Residents Associations, Parish Council’s, Councillors, to name just a few.

What do you like about what you do?

House building is a very dynamic and face paced industry and I enjoy being part of a wider team that strives to overcome the continual challenges of delivering a successful planning permission.

Why did you choose this career?

I wasn’t wholly sure what I wanted to do until I left University. I always knew I had an interest in cityscapes, architecture and the layout of towns/cities. The idea of creating quality new environments within which future generations would live was particularly appealing to me -  and this ultimately lead me to pursue a career in Town Planning. 

What qualifications did you need to get this job?

I have a BA (Hons) Degree in Geography and a Masters Degree in Town and Country Planning.

Is there any particular advice you would give to someone looking for a career in your area of work?

Approach everything with a positive mind-set. Embrace challenges as an opportunity not a frustration and look to gain as much experience in as many areas of planning/construction as you can in the early part of your career.