Upcoming debate asks ‘How do we make the Planning System work for Business?’

5 April 2016

Derby Business School will team up with national leading law firm Freeths LLP to host the third in a series of debates, which will ask the question: how do we make the Planning System work for business?

The debate will take place on Wednesday, April 13 at the University of Derby’s Kedleston Road campus, offering an evening of inspiring discussion and intellectual debate with high profile business leaders on the current state of the UK Planning System and their visions for the future.

Many people in business think the UK Planning System is broken. In the 21st Century we now have a high cost system that does not deliver results with any degree of confidence and is plagued by delays. The problem is: how to fix it?

The evening will be hosted by Chairperson Mike Copestake of Freeths LLP, with guest speaker Derek Latham, Chairman of Lathams Architects and Robert Bruce, Partner in the Planning Team at Freeths LLP.

Speaking ahead of the debate, Mike Copestake said: “Recent research from the Spatial Economics Research Council suggests that, amongst other things, planning restrictions substantially raise house prices and have a negative impact on retail productivity. In this debate, we want to explore why this is, whether those restrictions are in the public interest and if not, how they should be changed.

“I am delighted to be chairing this event alongside Derek and Robert both of whom are senior and well known practitioners in the field of Planning and look forward to their insights into this important subject.”

Dr David Russell, Dean of the College of Business at the University of Derby, added: “The College of Business and the University of Derby are delighted to continue our association with Freeths, providing a series of thought provoking debates and discussion with high profile government and business leaders on contemporary matters affecting the region’s business.”

Vice Chancellor at the Freeths Debate

Mike has been a partner at Freeths’ Derby office for over 20 years and will be sharing his extensive knowledge of the challenges facing the East Midlands business sector through his experience in commercial legal practice.

Derek Latham is an Urban Designer, Architect, Landscape Architect, Town Planner, Conservation Architect and was principal of Lathams for 35 years. He now advises Historic England on its Urban Panel and is a Visiting Professor at the University of Derby.

Robert Bruce, a partner in the Planning and Environment teamat Freeths has more than 15 years’ experience advising on planning, highways, compulsory purchase, infrastructure, and local government law and, more recently, the community infrastructure levy. He has represented clients on the £3.5bn redevelopment of Brent Cross and acted on a Judicial Review of the original decision of the Government relating to HS2.