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Job description: Senior town planner

Written by: Jennifer Jackson
Published on: 20 Mar 2019

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What is involved in the role of a senior town planner? Find out about the key responsibilities, skills required and career opportunities it could lead to.

JD Senior Planner

As a senior town planner you will have the responsibility of being the key point of contact for clients, delivering expert planning advice to help them through the process. You will typically have a varied project workload including strategic residential, town centre regeneration and large scale commercial, retail and industrial work.

With your extensive knowledge of the UK planning process you will lead project teams, build relationships with new and existing clients and identify potential sites for development.

Key responsibilities

As a senior town planner you are likely to have a combination of the following responsibilities:

  • Preparing and submitting planning applications, appeals and pre-application enquiries
  • Undertaking regular community engagement, committee meetings and public examinations
  • Conducting research and undertaking planning appraisals to establish the development of potential of sites
  • Researching and designing planning policies to guide development
  • Writing high quality reports with recommendations
  • Communicating with all stakeholders involved in the planning process
  • Attending site visits and client meetings


You will typically require:

  • Chartered membership with the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI)
  • An RTPI accredited degree
  • You will also need a full driving licence

Relevant experience

For a senior town planner position it is anticipated that candidates will have:

  • Extensive planning experience, either within a consultancy or local authority environment
  • Demonstrable experience of the planning process including the preparation and submission of applications and appeals
  • Strong report writing skills and experience of delivering recommendations on a range of major planning applications
  • Excellent communication skills, both written and verbal
  • A proven track record in client liaison
  • The ability to mentor and guide junior members of the team


Standard working hours are Monday-Friday 9:00am to 5:00pm. You may need to work additional hours to meet particular project deadlines or to respond to urgent planning requests.


Salary is negotiable depending on skills and experience, however, a typical salary range for a senior town planner is £30,000 - £45,000 per annum plus benefits. This can vary depending on organisation and location.

A recruitment expert’s perspective:

"A senior town planner’s role is an integral part of any planning team, whether it be within a private consultancy or local authority. They hold the responsibility of building and nurturing client relationships, delivering technical work whilst also being a mentor to more junior members of the team. 


"The planning sector is busier than ever and with large scale, innovative developments being proposed nationally, it’s an exciting time for ambitious, hardworking planners to take the step up to senior planner."

- Harriet Allan, senior consultant, Penguin Recruitment

Career opportunities

Career progression opportunities are available for ambitious senior planners. Next steps may include:

Penguin Recruitment is currently recruiting for the following senior town planning roles:

To discuss a number of exciting senior planner opportunities across the UK get in touch with Harriet Allan at Penguin Recruitment on 01792 365104.

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