Planning and Conservation Trustee

Planning and Conservation Trustee

At a glance


  • Architecture / Surveying
  • Research (qualitative / quantitative)


London, SW1A 2BJ
Mainly at home
Travel limit? No limit


Either in or out of office hours Estimate of time needed:
0-5 hours / month, 0-3 hours / week or 3-7 hours / week
Attend six Board meetings and 4-6 PCWG meetings a year. There will also be email exchanges between meetings and planning responses to review.

London Gardens Trust (LGT) is seeking someone to join the Board to strengthen our response to planning and conservation issues, to help drive forward our strategic intention to become the trusted voice of London's parks and gardens.   

What will you be doing?

You will play a key part in our responses to planning and conservation issues. The London Gardens Trust responds on behalf of The Gardens Trust in its role as a statutory consultee in the planning process.  We also want you to play an active part within our Planning & Conservation Working Group (PCWG), ideally acting as joint Chair. This Group responds to planning applications with impact on London's Parks and Gardens, especially those at Grade II, or unlisted heritage assets, which Historic England does not respond to. 

You will attend Board meetings (current six times a year) and help set strategic direction regarding planning matters that affect our parks and gardens. 


We also want  you to: 

- play an active part within out Planning & Conservation Working Group (PCWG), which is increasingly under pressure to respond to planning applications, for eg: reviewing letters by others, doing responses for one borough.

- Ideally acting as joint Chair, Vice chair or Chair (with the existing Chair) for the PCWG, and help chair meetings (PCWG meets 4-6 times/year)

- Assist with the smooth running of the group by familiarising themselves with our systems and procedures for responding to applications.

- We should have one member per borough, who responds to applications in that borough. However we do not currently have this coverage, and our Planning & Conservation Officer is tasked with recruiting more volunteers. Any support they can be given would also be helpful.

- Checking responses that our group members have drafted, and should be checked before being sent.

- with the group, occasionally meet up at parks which are subject to planning applications to jointly discuss significance of the gardens, and help arrive at a decision regarding the harm or benefit for the application in question

- be a team member and assist with the direction of our paid Planning and Conservation Project Officer, whose remit it is to recruit more volunteers to the group, to assist our boroughwide coverage.

- Help with any future Planning Inquiries, to share the load with the current chair.


The Group responds to planning applications which impact on London’s Parks and Gardens, especially those at Grade II which Historic England does not consider.

What are we looking for?


  • Experience of working within, or knowledge of the Planning system (paid or voluntary)
  • Responding to planning applications – or an interest in doing so
  • An interest or experience in Landscape & Heritage planning & historic conservation issues
  • Sufficient time to assist our friendly group with good humour!
  • Ability to use filing systems and general, basic IT (office 365)


  • Working with ‘Friends’ groups/volunteers
  • Commitment to the Charity’s cause and objectives and willingness to act as ambassador to external bodies, charities
  • Trustee/Board experience
  • Any experience of LVIA/planning would be welcome!
  • Be organised and willing to pitch in!

What difference will you make?

Parks and gardens in London are increasingly under threat from development. We need your help to protect them in two areas.

Firstly, to boost understanding and strategic direction of planning matters at Board Level, and

Secondly, within our Planning and Conservation Working Group, to assist our current board member who is also chair of this group.

You will make a big difference by being a key part of our Board and our small Planning and Conservation Working Group. The Planning Group responds to planning applications which impact on London’s Parks and Gardens, but needs more members.

You will be able to bring your organisational skills to the Board and our PCWG.

Whatever mix of skills you bring, you will be helping save London’s Parks and green spaces from development of all kinds, or ill informed decision making at an early stage! Those that are increasingly under threat are those which are unlisted or listed at Grade II, which Historic England does not consider.

What's in it for the volunteer?

Your work will benefit London’s open spaces and help LGT become a more effective voice in protecting and enhancing them.  LGT makes an important contribution to the Gardens Trust in its role as a statutory consultee in the planning process.

Additionally we are a small friendly team. We would like to carry out more visits to parks and gardens that are the subject of planning applications or development proposals, and make these more social events.

We’d like to carry out more training for new members of the group, and this is best done ‘in the field’ discussing green space issues or simply enjoying the landscape and a cup of tea!

A few more details

LGT is committed to the spirit and the letter of the Equalities Act. We will increase the diversity of our Board by recruiting people with as wide a range of skills, life experiences and backgrounds as possible. We welcome applications from anyone, regardless of their race, disability, gender reassignment, marital status, pregnancy or parenthood, religion or belief, gender, age or sexual orientation.  

Before you apply

To register your interest, please provide a brief CV, contact details and a covering letter outlining why you wish to apply for the opportunity and how you meet the person specification. The closing date for applications is 15 January 2021. Shortlisted applicants will be invited to an informal discussion with a Trustee Panel. Don’t worry if you don’t fit all of the criteria, we would love to hear from you as we have vacancies in our Planning Working Group, as well as the Board.
  • Environment
  • Gardens and parks
  • Local / community
  • London Gardens Trust (LGT) is a charity affiliated to the national Gardens Trust (GT). LGT seeks to: 

    • champion all  London green space and make observations on planning proposals,
    • ...