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Planning Policy Officer / Full time

South Oxfordshire and Vale of White Horse District Council

£36,456 – £41,55

Milton Park, South Central


Additional Documentation:

Role overview

Are you a dynamic and enthusiastic town planner with experience in local and ideally neighbourhood plan-making? South Oxfordshire and Vale of White Horse District Councils are looking for an ambitious planning policy officer committed to place-making and high quality customer service. If you are ready for a new challenge with opportunities to develop professionally, this could be the role for you.

The successful applicant for this important role will join the councils at an exciting time to help deliver the work of the policy team. The immediate focus will be to support communities which are preparing neighbourhood plans for many of our towns and villages. This will include advising them on correct procedure, ensuring that their plans are aligned with the districts’ current and emerging development plans, and helping to manage the examination and adoption of neighbourhood plans. This post will also contribute to the progression of Local Plan work as required.

Planning Policy Officer Responsibilities.

- guide and advise neighbourhood planning groups to ensure that they are following regulations and procedure correctly.
- ensure that neighbourhood plans being prepared conform with the districts’ existing and emerging local plans.
- assist the community groups preparing neighbourhood plans by offering accurate and clear guidance and advice on their emerging plan policies.
- attend meetings with community groups, councillors and consultants (including evening and weekend meetings when necessary).
- prepare neighbourhood planning documents and reports for colleagues and councillors as required.
- prepare the council’s formal response to draft Neighbourhood Plans.
- manage the district councils’ formal public consultation, examination and referendum responsibilities for neighbourhood plans, including acting as programme officer for neighbourhood plan examinations if required.
- provide professional advice and training on neighbourhood plans, planning policy and development matters to the public, Members and other professionals.
- assist in the supervision of the work of junior planning or technical officers.

Planning Policy Officer Requirements:

- minimum of 2 years experience of working in a planning office including experience of preparing planning policy documents.
- good IT experience in Windows environment and good keyboard skills.
- experience of working within a customer focused environment dealing with the public.
- good, accurate written communication skills.
- good oral skills and experience in giving clear, succinct and well argued presentations - formally and informally.
- confident working with maps and plans.
- an excellent knowledge of planning legislation and guidance, and the ability to interpret these for non-planners.
- diplomatic, tactful and able to maintain discretion in difficult circumstances.
- able to manage projects.

Your essential qualifications:

• a Degree or Diploma in Town Planning, or a related discipline, or equivalent level of experience
• full/licentiate membership of the Royal Town Planning Institute
• hold a full and current driving licence
• have the use of a car insured for business purposes (you will need to be able to get to and from villages across the district)

If you have the following experience or qualifications – it’s a bonus:

• Previous experience of preparing or assisting preparation of neighbourhood plans
• Experience of carrying out Sustainability Appraisals and/or SEAs for development plans
• additional education in a related discipline

About the councils:

South Oxfordshire and Vale of White Horse District Councils are forward-thinking local authorities, based in one of the most attractive areas of the country. They are looking for a professional, competent and enthusiastic person who can communicate well at all levels. An excellent benefits package is on offer including annualised hours (flexible working) and a career average pension scheme.

Salary: £36,456 – £41,555 per year
Duration of role: Fixed Term Contact (12 months)

Hours per week: Full time (37 hours per week)

Location: Milton Park, Oxfordshire

Benefits: A basic 24 days annual leave per annum, rising to 29 days after five years. You also have all the bank holidays to look forward to and time off between Christmas and New Year. Flexible working and annualised hours – a flexible approach to work that our employees love! Salary pay awards – most jobs give scope for a pay increase after six months or the following April (depending on your start date) and we also review salaries each April. A generous career average pension scheme which includes life insurance of three times your salary. No car park costs as there’s ample free parking available. A childcare voucher scheme which parents appreciate. The opportunity to purchase a bike through Cyclescheme (cheaper than directly through a store) so that you can cycle to work! A salary sacrifice car lease scheme – a fully inclusive driving package for a fixed monthly cost. Various schemes to keep you healthy (reduced gym membership, free swims, contributory medical schemes, wellbeing appointments, free eye tests for DSE users, after work sports clubs and more). We give you two days per year to volunteer within the local community.

Contract type
Fixed Term Contract

£36,456 – £41,555 per year

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