NILGA to Host Major Planning and Place-Shaping Conference

NILGA – the Northern Ireland Local Government Association – is set to host a key Planning and Place-Shaping Conference in October in Enniskillen.

The event, which is set to take place at the Killyhevlin Hotel, Enniskillen on 8 October, will bring together leading senior representatives from the NI Civil Service, business, local government, environmental, social economy and academic partners.

The conference ‘Changing Places: Planning, Place-Shaping and Place-Making in Northern Ireland’ is an important local government event for anyone interested in the future of planning, the environment or economic development in Northern Ireland. It is expected to be a focal point in helping to shape and develop local government policy and informing how local councils can effectively lead future planning and infrastructure projects in Northern Ireland.

Planning and Place-Shaping Conference Speakers

  • Katrina Godfrey, Permanent Secretary, Dept for Infrastructure
  • Sara Venning, CEO, NI Water
  • Paddy Gray, Emeritus Professor of Housing – Ulster University
  • Peter Morrow, Aecom
  • David Jackson, Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council
  • Noelle McAloon, Enniskillen BID Manager
  • Ian Humphrey, Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful
  • Robin Hambleton, University of the West of England and Urban Answers

As part of the local government reform programme, local councils now have more responsibilities for planning. Planning is a hugely significant responsibility which councils seek to plan and deliver with local communities as it affects the lives of everyone. It is key that local councils have strong, efficient and focused planning systems which partner bodies respond to dynamically. Local government is a key player in delivering sustainable development, is at the forefront of tackling the climate crisis, is providing more high-quality social housing and is driving the wider Northern Ireland economy.

Cllr Stevie Corr, Chair, NILGA Place Shaping and Infrastructure Network said: “Planning powers are arguably local government’s greatest responsibility in Northern Ireland. Place-shaping is about getting the right things built in the right places, about the spaces around buildings and other key issues including social justice, job creation, regeneration, climate change and sustainable development.

“This conference is a vital opportunity to hear from leaders in the planning sector and discuss how local government can improve our housing policies, build our resilience to the climate crisis, exploit our digital infrastructure to deliver economic success, and develop sustainable tourism in our local areas. 

“We hope to welcome as many people as possible to Enniskillen on 8 October and we look forward to sharing perspectives, ideas and views on how to shape the future of planning in Northern Ireland.” 

Tickets to the event can be purchased at

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