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Celebrating the successes of 2016   
17 December 2016 | Posted by Sophie Hetherington
Season's Greetings from Beacon Planning!

We're wrapping up our busiest year to date, and our team is looking forward to relaxing over the holidays. We'll be using the skills we learned during our Birthday Event at the Cambridge Cookery School, to indulge in some tasty festive treats!

We have enjoyed public recognition of our work, with the annual survey of national planning consultancies listing Beacon within the 50 leading employers of planners in the country, and joint 7th in the east of England. We were also proud to have several of our projects nominated for awards. Examples include a scheme to upgrade student accommodation at Trinity College won the title of ''Best Conservation, Alteration or Extension of an Existing Building'' at Cambridge's 2016 Design and Construction Awards. Beacon, as a company, was shortlisted by the East of England branch of the Royal Town Planning Institute for its work in the preparation of a Masterplan for Girton College, Cambridge. In addition to this, the Heong Gallery, which opened to the public in February, was nominated for the regional RIBA East Awards 2016.

2016 has been highly successful for our Planning team, which has expanded considerably. Rebecca Flood joined us in April, John Dudding in August, and Janine Richardson in September, each bringing unique knowledge and expertise to the table. This combination of skills has brought positive outcomes to a wide range of projects, including acting as expert witnesses in a public inquiry regarding a wind turbine application in Bodham and obtaining planning permission for many varied schemes including 175-home development in Blofield (Norfolk), Christ College Library, The Heong Gallery at Downing College, and many more.

The Heritage team, joined by Emma Sharp in March, has also moved from strength to strength, winning approval for the restoration, conversion, and extension of heritage assets across the country. Notable projects include providing heritage advice to the GroundWork gallery in King's Lynn, preparing the Conservation Area Appraisal for Wisbech, supporting works to many private residences, Churchill College, and St John's College Cambridge. Some longer-term projects also came to fruition, including plans to enhance the Cambridge Union Society.

The company's commitment to supporting professional development was shown when planning consultant Ella Murfet gained RTPI membership in April, qualifying as a Chartered Planner. The Planning team also hosted a work experience student, Nathan Makwana, who has since joined Cambridge City Council as a trainee planner. In the Heritage team, 2016 has seen Head of Heritage Jo Burton complete her MSt in Interdisciplinary Design for the Built Environment, and Sophie Hetherington graduate with an MSt in Building History, both at Wolfson College, Cambridge.