We offer training in a variety of subjects related to landscape and visual assessment, sustainable urban form and renewable energy and how these subjects contribute to planning. We have trained local authority officers on what to take into account when considering the landscape and visual effects of wind energy. We have explored how landscape character relates to food, guiding local community groups on how to explore this further. In Wales we have trained developer’s landscape architects and planners on how to use LANDMAP in landscape and visual impact assessment and in public inquiries. The more general use of LANDMAP in planning has also been the subject of other training sessions for local authority officers and council members.

We can structure training to last a whole day or a half day depending on the subject and number of people involved. Contact Simon White for further details.

Sample training themes:

Landscape and visual impact in relation to wind energy

We can train groups of development control planners, council members and other groups on what landscape and visual issues to take into consideration when dealing with wind farm proposals in planning. Issues include an overview of the planning framework, the specific characteristics of turbines, principles of assessment including sensitivity, magnitude of effect and significance, design and cumulative impact issues. We show what information should be expected in environmental statements to assist robust decision making and if and when to call in expert assistance.

Our experience in this area includes numerous wind farm strategies, landscape and visual impact assessments, advice to local authorities on wind farm applications and expert witness at public inquiries.

Use of LANDMAP in planning

LANDMAP is the detailed landscape information source covering the whole of Wales promoted by the Countryside Council for Wales (CCW). It can be considered to be complex which is offputting to those not familiar with its structure and content. We can reveal what is important in LANDMAP and how to use and get the best out of it for planning purposes. We can train groups of planners, members, developers and others. Themes covered include how to help development fit with the landscape, how to inform landscape sensitivity, monitoring and management and LANDMAP’s use in landscape and visual impact assessments. We can also show how its application can be an essential component for success in planning inquiries in Wales.

Our experience derives from involvement in the first pilot studies on the LANDMAP method, production of several LANDMAP studies for local authorities, numerous visual and sensory assessments, public inquiries and quality assurance and training on the subject for CCW.

Sustainable Urban Form in planning

We can offer training on sustainable urban form with an emphasis on the relationship of landscape with settlement taking into account urban design principles. Issues such as sustainable settlement form, green infrastructure, landscape sensitivity and capacity, the urban fringe, policy and design would be covered. Facilitating local food production can also be offered.

Simon White’s experience includes urban design training, lectures on sustainable urban form, work as an urban design officer, national demonstration projects linking landscape to planning policy and public inquiries on settlement, and public inquiries on settlement extensions. Simon Michaels is an expert in local food as well landscape issues.

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