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New panel members wanted for SWT Quality Review Panel

23 August 2021 : Council news, Planning and development

Somerset West and Taunton Council is inviting applications for membership of a Quality Review Panel, which is being formed to support high standards in new developments in the district in accordance with the emerging Design Guide SPD.

The panel will play an important role furthering the council’s commitment to achieving high quality and sustainable places that meet the needs and consider the future demands of communities.

It will provide independent expert design advice, to ensure exemplary development across Somerset West and Taunton that will add to the area’s character, creating healthy, attractive and distinctive places to live and work.

Taunton was designated as a Garden Town in early 2017 reflecting the council's commitment to deliver significant housing growth focused on a number of new garden communities as well as a regenerated town centre. The Garden communities will provide 8,500 new homes and associated employment and community facilities at three urban extensions by 2028.

The Council has also declared climate and ecological emergencies ensuring that both are addressed as strategic priorities for planning policies and design guides for new development.

Leader of the Council, Cllr Federica Smith-Roberts, said: “The council is working to improve the quality of new development, strengthen the connections between town and country through a network of green spaces, deliver more prosperous town centres and improve connectivity.

“The new Quality Review Panel will contribute to this, helping us achieve a higher quality natural and built environment, supporting healthier and happier places.”

The panel will have around 16 members with a wide range of skills and expertise, and applications are welcome from experts in the following areas:

  • Architecture
  • Town planning / urban design
  • Landscape / ecology
  • Heritage / townscape
  • Sustainability / low carbon design
  • Transport planning
  • Civil / structural engineering
  • Inclusive design
  • Development delivery

Recruitment packs can be requested by emailing somersetwestandtaunton@frame-projects.co.uk.

Applications should be addressed to Frame Projects, which is managing the Quality Review Panel to maintain the independence of its advice.

The closing date for applications is Monday, 13 September 2021.

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