Peter Wilkinson is the Managing Director of Landmark Planning Ltd. He has been a practicing planner for 40 years, having worked in both the public and private sectors in a wide variety of capacities. Locally and worthy of note, he was City Centre Manager for Leicester City Council from 1994 to 1999. Since that time, he has run Landmark Planning Ltd from its base in the city.
How would you describe what your business does?
Landmark Planning undertakes all work in relation to the town planning process, from planning applications to appeals. This ranges from managing multi-million residential and commercial development schemes, to small certificates of lawful use or enforcement cases, for both public and private clients. Two of the largest current schemes relate to the £60m new centre for Nottingham College, and a 7 hectare commercial scheme for Brackley Property Developments at Broughton Astley.
A much broader description is available at www.landmarkplanning.co.uk where a wider range of recent projects is described.
What are the biggest opportunities for your business?
The biggest opportunities for the business in the future, as we emerge (hopefully from the Covid crisis!) relate firstly, to major housing developments to satisfy the government’s 300,000 a year target; and secondly, the repurposing of property assets as a consequence of all the economic changes resulting from Covid.
What are the biggest challenges for your business?
- Securing sufficient work when most companies and individuals will be short of capital for new projects, as a consequence of surviving the economic downturn.
- Planning is frequently about liaising with a wide range of partners to prepare schemes and then promoting them to other stakeholders, such as public or public bodies. Covid restrictions and remote working make this so much harder to secure effective engagement.
What would you identify as the key strengths of Leicester?
- The city is centrally located within the country.
- Leicester is blessed with a vast range of small businesses and communities with an outstanding entrepreneurial spirit.
What are the top three ways in which Leicester can develop to support the business community?
- Substantially improve transport links, both within and adjacent the city, as well as lobbying to improve extra-region communications both North-South, but also East-West.
- Continue to invest heavily in improving the physical environment of the city, particularly the centre and the Waterside.
- Market and promote the city: particularly to attract new investment in 21st century sectors, that have substantive prospects to create wealth and employment going forward.