Issue date: 19 February 2001

The BA (Honours) in Architecture and Planning at the University of the West of England has received national acclaim from the RTPI (the Royal Town Planning Institute) in a UK-wide competition.

The 'Award for Planning and Education' was made as part of the RTPI National Awards for Planning Achievement 2000. The judges commented on the groundbreaking nature of the course which is unique in bringing together the disciplines of planning and architecture in one joint honours degree giving dual professional qualifications. It is the first time that a University course has been selected for this award by the RTPI.

The award was presented to Sandra Manley of the Faculty of the Built Environment at the Millennium Britannia Mayfair Hotel in London where 400 guests included MP's Michael Heseltine and Sir Sydney Chapman, Baroness Hamwee and Sir Peter Hall (Honorary Doctorate - UWE)

Comments from the judges included: "We were impressed by the extensive consultative process, which underpinned the design of the course, and by the establishment of the advisory panel including students themselves".

Jim Claydon, the Head of the School of Planning and Architecture says the new award is meeting an important skills gap in the market as well as bringing together two professions responsible for shaping our cities and towns. "It looks as though the demand for dual skills will come from three sources - local authority planning departments in need of deeper understanding of design matters, architectural practices needing greater planning

knowledge within their firms and some who will work independently as architect-planners. I believe our graduates will be well equipped to bring creative design led solutions to urban problems. The course is now five years old and the first batch of graduates have found their way into work satisfactorily."

Jim Claydon also believes the course is helping to bridge a growing gulf between architects and planners at a time when the problems of the built environment need the two professions to work in tandem.


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