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December 2023

Stephen has worked with us for over 5 years as a Senior Planning Officer.

His role involves helping to deliver 1,100 new houses in Fordingbridge, as well as supporting other housing applications throughout the district. Stephen takes a lead role in this, and works with urban designers, ecologists, landscape architects and other colleagues at NFDC.

He's worked in town planning for over 45 years across one county council, seven district councils and two national park authorities, in roles ranging from drawing office cartographer to planning director at Dartmoor National Park.

Stephen says that if his job wasn't done, all the houses that we need wouldn't get built and our local environment would be impacted. He says: "Planners shape the future town and country environment we live in, and at the same time try to protect what we love about the Forest."

His favourite part of his role is seeing new housing developments being built which reflect the best qualities of the Forest. Stephen has just overseen the last big strategic site through Planning Committee, and is starting to see the completion of part of one of the sites in Fordingbridge, as well as people moving in and new trees being planted.

When asked what the most unusual thing he's done at work is, Stephen says: "Playing a tuba on the front lawn for the Kings Coronation as part of New Forest Brass Band." One of the biggest challenges he's overcome is working from home and juggling multiple major planning applications at the same time.

One of Stephen's favourite things about working at NFDC is walking the common at Bolton's Bench during his lunch break. When asked what Stephen's favourite thing about the New Forest is, he says: "The Ornamental Drive as I love trees!"

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