The last comprehensive survey of Design skills in English local authorities noted: “Urban design skills and capacity within local planning authorities are woefully low and declining”  Three years later the Housing Design Audit for England concluded that the design of new housing developments in England remained overwhelmingly ‘mediocre’ or ‘poor’.  The two are fundamentally linked.

Unfortunately, the stark conclusion of The design deficit, our latest Place Alliance research report, suggests that at the current rate of change it will take until 2077 to have at least one urban design officer in every local planning authority in England.