Get to know ... Our planning guru, Paul White

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Our planning guru, Paul White has over 30 years’ experience in the town planning field, including planning research and private planning practice.

Paul’s interest in Planning goes back to the 1980s, an exciting era with the beginning of out-of-town shopping and new settlement proposals. “The London Docklands Development Corporation had just started to get the generation of the Isle of dogs underway and I thought planning was a profession worth looking into”, says Paul.

He was elected as a member of the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) in 1989 and since then has advised on planning matters for a wide variety of clients in the public and private sectors and given evidence at Local Plan and appeal inquiries for various commercial, institutional, housing and new settlement proposals. He is listed in the current edition of the Expert Witness Directory.

Paul has worked in the Chichester area for the last 20 years or so and successfully secured planning consent for a variety of proposals including large residential urban extensions, greenfield and redevelopment schemes, institutional facilities, commercial horticultural development, and purpose-built student accommodation.

He is experienced in dealing with planning matters at all stages of the planning process from initial development appraisals, Local Plan and Neighbourhood Plan land promotion, planning applications, appeals and planning enforcement.

His most unusual project was actually on his very first job, acting as document carrier for the senior partner who gave evidence at a public inquiry for the first M & S out of town retail store in Lisburn, NorthernIreland.  

“The plane was delayed because it had to be de-iced and I was almost late for the inquiry start,” says Paul.  “Because of the political troubles at the time, it was arranged that we travelled to the inquiry venue in an armed convoy. Whoaa – did I feel important!”

Generally speaking, his jobs aren’t that perilous. He is currently working on a wide range of residential applications, appeals and NeighbourhoodPlan proposals across the South East as well as bespoke replacement dwellings and redevelopment schemes in the Chichester Harbour Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and South Downs National Park.

When he’s not planning, he used to participate in Ironman Triathlons, but now prefers the less strenuous pursuit of cycling to the pub!

If he hadn’t been a planner, Paul may well have been a solicitor or plumber: “There’s more money in plumbing!”

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