What are the prospects for the property sector in Yorkshire and Humber?
Very strong, certainly from a planning perspective. There are a great deal of planning applications being submitted and more importantly, being granted and delivered. Hopefully, central government will continue its pro-development stance with whoever is in power next May, as more permissions across the region will help to create more opportunities for existing businesses and residents and also to bring more companies and people into this great county.
What is the best project you have been involved in?
I am currently working on the preparation of a planning application for a 50 acre scheme at Junction 26 of the M62, which should create circa 500,000 sq ft of mixed employment space and create up to 1,000 jobs, which has proved very interesting so far and I would have to say is the best project I have been involved in to date.
What is your favourite building in the region and why?
Huddersfield Railway Station never fails to impress me with its grand imposing frontage - plus great pubs. I fully agree with John Betjeman who described it as “the most splendid station facade in England”. Hopefully it will see the benefits of the proposed £15bn northern investment plan as an integral link between Leeds and Manchester.
If you could change one thing to improve the property industry in this region, what would it be?
It would be for the Government to give more resources to Local Planning Authorities that have been through a great deal of cuts and staff reductions during the recession. Often these numbers have not been replenished, despite the volume of planning applications being submitted rising dramatically.
Who has inspired you?
My parents, who have always encouraged me without being pushy and allowed me to follow my own path through life.