The Royal Town Planning Institute’s (RTPI) South West region has elected Phil Bisatt as its new chair. Phil, Taunton Deane Borough Council’s planning policy officer, has worked in local government for more than 30 years in a variety of planning and transport policy roles.
He is also joint branch secretary of the Taunton Deane and West Somerset branch of UNISON, and a district council representative on the union’s South West regional local government service group executive.
He has been a director of the national transport campaign group Railfuture and maintains active interests in environmentally-friendly transport and promotion of access to the countryside.
Phil Bisatt said: “There are so many ways in which planners play a crucial role in our society. Their professional expertise makes a real difference to the lives of those living, working, travelling and relaxing in the region.
“Planners help bring investment in jobs and services; they address the important issue of housing need; they work to conserve the best of our heritage; drive up standards in design and construction; help to build community; and ensure efficient decision making.
“Being a planner is not always easy and, very often, resources are inadequate, but these are important jobs and I am proud of what planners have achieved.”
RTPI regional chairs are elected for a one-year term. Phil Bisatt succeeds Paul Barnard, Plymouth City Council’s assistant director of development, as South West chair,
The RTPI represents 23,000 planning professionals working in the public, private, charitable and education sectors globally.
The South West region covers Wiltshire, Somerset, Cornwall, Devon, Dorset, Gloucestershire, the Channel Islands and the Isles of Scilly.