North East planners follow optimism south

Craig Stockley, Anne-Marie Mombeyarara and Steve Hesmondhalgh of Steve Hesmondhalgh & Associates. (S)

Craig Stockley, Anne-Marie Mombeyarara and Steve Hesmondhalgh of Steve Hesmondhalgh & Associates. (S)

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A North East planning consultancy is moving its main office to the Harrogate district to take advantage of the area’s “economic optimism”.

Managing director Steve Hesmondhalgh said his firm, Steve Hesmondhalgh & Associates, had shifted its main operation to new offices at Bishop Monkton on the back of a raft of new contracts for clients based in the county; it retains a smaller base in County Durham.

Mr Hesmondhalgh, who has a background in both local authority planning and private practice, said: “There is growing economic optimism in North Yorkshire and we’re seeing an increase in the number of clients who recognise the potential for development, which can only be good news for the local and regional economy.

“Our new offices in Harrogate reflect this confidence and we’re looking forward to working on some exciting schemes.”

Mr Hesmondhalgh and associate Craig Stockley have over 30 years’ planning experience between them and work closely with a team of consultants that includes architects, economic and housing policy specialists, transport engineers, ecologists and landscape architects. The firm has a reputation for taking a highly commercial approach to the planning process.

Mr Hesmondhalgh added: “Changes to policy and incentives from government will all change the UK’s landscape in the coming years: there are great opportunities throughout North Yorkshire in both villages and urban areas.”