Overview of the role

Work with, and provide technical and administrative support to chartered town planners.

Details of standard

Occupation summary

This occupation is found in the planning, construction, architectural, infrastructure, environmental and local government sectors. Town Planning Assistants may work in local authorities, small consultancies, large multi-disciplinary consultancies, central government or other organisations undertaking planning work.. The broad purpose of the occupation is to work with, and provide technical and administrative support to Chartered Town Planners to deliver new developments and to shape and create sustainable places for the benefit of the public. They also help members of the public and/or clients to navigate the planning system and explain its rules and requirements. The work includes both office based work and site visits. Town Planning Assistants need to be willing and able to travel for site visits. Town Planning Assistants research and compile site history and undertake initial site analysis for developments including producing documentation and graphical representations as well as checking compliance with legislation and environmental designations. They assist Chartered Town Planners with community engagement and consultation and provide members of the public, clients and councillors with relevant planning advice. Town Planning Assistants manage a caseload of planning applications under supervision and support Chartered Town Planners to deliver projects. Town Planning Assistants who are Associate Members of the Royal Town Planning Institute must abide by the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) Code of Professional Conduct and ethical standards They must also abide by an Employer Code of Conduct.. In their daily work, an employee in this occupation interacts with a range of both internal and external stakeholders such as Chartered Town Planners, developers and clients, as well as members of the public and local councillors. They also need to interact with specialists in a range of occupations including Architects, Surveyors, Building Control, Housing Officers, Urban Designers, Ecologists, Historic Environment Officers, Transport Planners and Landscape Architects. The role is varied, office based with meetings and visits on site.. An employee in this occupation will be responsible for their own work including undertaking preliminary research, initial analysis and interpretation of written policy documents, case law and planning legislation, and planning history of a site or area and making recommendations to Chartered Town Planners. They work under the supervision of Chartered Town Planners for more complex analysis and assessment work including writing reports and processing major planning applications. They are expected to manage their workload to set deadlines and work in accordance with health and safety and environmental considerations..

Typical job titles include:

Assistant town planner Enforcement assistant Planning assistant Planning support officer Planning technician Technical support officer Town planning assistant Town planning technician

Occupation duties

Duty KSBs

Duty 1 Research and compile site history including any land use policy restrictions and constraints

K1 K3 K4 K5

S1 S2 S4 S7 S9

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5

Duty 2 Undertake initial site analysis through site visits, taking site photographs, analysis of maps

K8 K9

S2 S3 S8

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5

Duty 3 Measure proposals for development, as represented on a site plan or in elevation, to understand the size and scale of the proposed buildings and structures

K8 K10

S2 S8

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5

Duty 4 Summarise policy constraints, site research and baseline analysis with regards to planning applications or proposal for developments and present the information clearly and concisely in written and verbal format to Chartered Town Planners

K1 K2 K3 K4 K5 K11

S1 S2 S4 S6 S9 S11

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5

Duty 5 Review environmental and other specialist designations and reports to provide a preliminary assessment of the environmental and physical impact of planning applications and/or development proposals.

K4 K5


B1 B2 B3 B4 B5

Duty 6 Monitor and check proposals for development, planning applications and/or completed proposals for compliance against relevant local, strategic and national planning requirements including statutory obligations and conditions. Commence Enforcement investigations under the supervision of a Chartered Town Planner.

K1 K2 K3 K4 K5 K6 K7 K10

S1 S2 S11

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5

Duty 7 Apply relevant legislation and national and locally adopted policy when working on planning projects and casework.

K1 K2 K4 K6 K11

S1 S2 S4 S6

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5

Duty 8 Provide clear and relevant advice to members of the public, councillors, agents and/or clients on planning issues, face to face, by phone and by email and other communications.

K1 K2 K3 K4 K6 K7

S1 S5 S10 S11

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5

Duty 9 Manage a caseload of straight-forward planning applications and representations to development plans under supervision.

K1 K2 K3 K4 K5 K7 K10 K11 K12

S1 S2 S4 S6 S7 S9

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5

Duty 10 Assist Chartered Town Planners with consultation and/or community engagement on planning applications and/or strategic or local plans including taking part in technical discussions on proposals for development with members of the public and/or councillors and justifying the stance you take.

K7 K9

S5 S10 S11

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5

Duty 11 Attend and speak at planning meetings, in an office environment and on site, and keep an accurate record of meetings

K1 K2 K4 K7 K9

S3 S5 S9 S10 S11

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5

Duty 12 Support Chartered Town Planners to deliver projects including following a project plan and ensuring key timescales are met.


S1 S2 S6 S9 S11

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5

Duty 13 Describe and code plans, planning documents, and supporting material accurately within a relevant workplace document filing system or casework management system

K2 K6

S6 S7 S11

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5

Duty 14 Work as part of a multidisciplinary team, knowing who to consult and seeking advice from other disciplines where relevant

K2 K3 K4 K5 K7 K9 K10 K11 K12

S1 S2 S5 S6 S9

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5

Duty 15 Prepare documentation including graphical representations, maps and site plans and present to clients and/or local authority committee under supervision.


S4 S5 S8 S10

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5

Duty 16 Assist Chartered Town Planners with planning appeals, collating casework materials and supporting documentation and responding to written evidence and other planning information presented by the opposing side.

K1 K2 K6 K10

S1 S2 S4 S6 S7

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5



K1: Legislation and Policy: The features of current town planning regulations, policy and guidance. Appreciation of the implications of case law for planning applications and statutory plan making Back to Duty

K2: Planning Process: Forms of development management and development plans that happen in planning and their supporting administrative processes. How to respond to requests for technical information about proposals and planning issues. Back to Duty

K3: Data collection: Where to find current and historical data on single sites and wider areas for development. Back to Duty

K4: Environmental procedures and sustainability: The features of environmental and ecological designations and processes relevant to the planning system. Where to find information identifying potential flood risk for developments and matters such as energy and climate change. Back to Duty

K5: Conservation and design: The features of the natural and historic environment that can be affected by developments and how they can and should be protected by the planning system. The features of technical constraints related to design. Back to Duty

K6: Conditions, appeals and enforcement: The features of monitoring compliance of authorised and unauthorised developments and support the processing of planning appeals. Back to Duty

K7: Stakeholder engagement: The wider decision making and political context in which planners work. Including the types and sizes of organisations working in planning, statutory authorities and other consultees, including the local community Back to Duty

K8: Mapping and graphics: Map preparation and analysis including taking measurements from maps. Methods and techniques for creating and explaining graphical representations including specialist graphic tools and mapping technologies as appropriate, and taking site photographs. Back to Duty

K9: Health and Safety: Responsibilities under health and safety legislation on safe working practices Back to Duty

K10: Size and scale: How to assess the size and scale of developments and structures in relation to planning policy and impact on adjacent developments Back to Duty

K11: Report writing: How to select and present information about policy constraints, site research and baseline analysis Back to Duty

K12: Project Management: The requirements for projects, including timescales, deadlines, cost implications, and identifying milestones/targets Back to Duty


S1: Data analysis: Research, collate and compare data relating to development proposals, applications and other planning considerations Back to Duty

S2: Policy analysis: Apply legislation, local and national policy and regulations to projects and casework Back to Duty

S3: Site analysis: Take and edit site photographs correctly, and take site visit notes accurately Back to Duty

S4: Report writing: Write reports and summaries and prepare initial documentation for planning proposals and policy representations Back to Duty

S5: Communication: Communicate effectively with members of the public, clients and other stakeholders. Respond to queries in writing and verbally. Use community engagement techniques to encourage participation in the planning system. Back to Duty

S6: Casework: Process own casework of projects including checking planning documentation for completeness and taking action in response to missing documentation Back to Duty

S7: Data monitoring: Consult, create and where necessary maintain records on relevant planning registers Back to Duty

S8: Mapping: Create accurate drawings, maps and digital illustrations. Interpret drawings and maps, and use appropriate mapping tools Back to Duty

S9: Presentation – internal: Discuss and present planning information, documentation and findings to colleagues Back to Duty

S10: Presentation – external: Prepare and deliver presentations to external audiences e.g. members of the public or other community or professional stakeholders Back to Duty

S11: Administration: Provide administrative support to line managers and peers. Keep an accurate record of meetings. Use appropriate case management systems. Back to Duty


B1: Take care for their own health and safety Back to Duty

B2: Reliability, integrity and respect for confidentiality on work related and personal matters, including appropriate use of social media and information systems. Follows their employers Code of Conduct. Back to Duty

B3: Commitment to their own Continuing Professional Development Back to Duty

B4: Work effectively both on their own and as part of a team Back to Duty

B5: Demonstrate time management skills, prioritise workload, work under pressure and be able to meet critical deadlines Back to Duty


English and Maths

Apprentices without level 2 English and maths will need to achieve this level prior to taking the End-Point Assessment. For those with an education, health and care plan or a legacy statement, the apprenticeship’s English and maths minimum requirement is Entry Level 3. A British Sign Language (BSL) qualification is an alternative to the English qualification for those whose primary language is BSL.

Professional recognition

This standard aligns with the following professional recognition:

  • Royal Town Planning Institute for Upon successful completion of the apprenticeship standard and following a period of relevant experience, an application for Associate membership of the RTPI can be made.

Additional details

Occupational Level:


Duration (months):



this apprenticeship will be reviewed in accordance with our change request policy.

Status: Approved for delivery
Level: 4
Reference: ST0936
Version: 1.0
Date updated: 09/05/2024
Approved for delivery: 15 June 2021
Route: Construction and the built environment
Typical duration to gateway: 24 months (this does not include EPA period)
Maximum funding: £12000
LARS Code: 633
EQA Provider: Ofqual
Employers involved in creating the standard: East Suffolk Council CBRE Edgars Ltd Basildon Council Indigo Planning Savills Greater Cambridge Shared Planning South Cambridgeshire District Council St Albans City & District Council Brighton & Hove City Council Winchester City Council

Version log

Version Change detail Earliest start date Latest start date Latest end date
1.0 Approved for delivery 15/06/2021 Not set Not set

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