We’re thrilled to announce our‘Nexus: Year in Review’ Series!

Each week, we will be sharing stories about the people and projects that make Nexus – filmed by each person using their own equipment, predominantly during lockdown. In the year that we’ve been privileged to be RTPI Planning Consultancy of the Year 2020, there have been some challenges but also, thankfully, some real highlights!

Zoe Knott

Some of our Nexans have been with us their whole careers, right from graduation. It’s always rewarding to watch team members grow into the brilliant, highly skilled planners they are today. One such individual is Zoe Knott from our Reading team. Zoe joined Nexus near the beginning of our company’s history, 7 years ago, and has worked her way up from Graduate to Associate Planner. Today, she works on major strategic planning schemes for up to 2,500 houses and leads on our IEMA certification.

In this clip, Zoe shares her professional journey and relays why Nexus’ community and family feel is really important for her.

Gemma Williams

When Nexus started out, there were just 3 planning consultants in total. 8 years on and there are 35 of us today! Our Manchester office is the second largest independent planning consultancy in the region – and to tell us a little bit about what it’s like is Manchester’s Office Manager, Gemma Williams.

Gemma did a business administration apprenticeship after finishing school at 16. Before joining Nexus, she worked for a number of different companies, which involved security, architecture and even rugby players! Today Gemma’s role very much involves looking out for everyone’s wellbeing, and she is the first to say it’s the people who make a job special. Hear her story and what it’s like working for Nexus.

Amy Perikova

Education is a hugely important aspect of life, and one which the Nexus team is particularly passionate about. We love working with schools to help them improve the learning experience for their pupils – however the proposals are not always straight forward!

Amy Petrikova, one of our Principal Planners in the London team, recently worked on a new STEM building at Northwood College to provide a significantly enhanced science teaching space. The team had to overcome several challenges including objections from the Council regarding heritage issues. Find out about the scheme and its outcome in our latest ‘Year in Review’ clip.

James Singer

What did you want to be when you grew up? Some of us knew very early on, but for James Singer, a career in town planning was never on his radar until after University! Today, James is an Associate Director in our London team, specialising in retail and town centre planning. The past year has been pretty eventful, pandemic aside. James was appointed as an expert to the Government’s High Streets Task Force and recently became a new dad. And that’s in addition to his day job!

In this ‘Nexus: Year in Review’ clip, James shares his story and passions for town centre planning – particularly in light of how our interactions with town centres have changed in the past year.

Heather Lindley-Clapp

Retail & Leisure Studies are an important part of planning. They fundamentally help an area identify its barriers to being a thriving destination and, when done right, ultimately help bring communities back to life.

Someone who knows this well is Heather Lindley-Clapp, a Director in our Manchester team. She recently led a Retail & Leisure Study which covered ten town centres in West Cumbria, on behalf of Allerdale and Copeland Councils. Hear how the team worked extensively with the public and stakeholders, to really get to the heart of planning for the future.

Katya Samokhvalova

Have you ever rebelled against your parents – and it turned out to be the best thing you did? This is exactly what happened to one of our newest Associate Planners, Katya Samokhvalova, who was originally going to study dentistry but rebelled at the last minute.

Born in Moscow, Katya has always been drawn to reimaging places and shaping our environment. She has now been a town planner for the past decade and has never looked back! Katya joined Nexus last year during the pandemic and remote working, and recently joined the NLA as a Retail & Hospitality Expert. We’re thrilled to have her on board in the London team!

John Penrose

Last month, our Manchester team was thrilled to receive Council approval for BXB’s proposal for a complex brownfield site at Cowley Hill in St Helens, Merseyside. The scheme will deliver up to 1,100 homes and a new local centre – but it certainly wasn’t without its challenges! Senior Planner Jon Penrose shares the journey of how we reached this successful conclusion.

Asma Saleem

One of our Nexans, Asma Saleem, has studied and worked in a number of different sectors before joining Nexus Planning. She has a degree in Microbiology and a master’s in Business Administration, and has worked in a bank as well as a Dental Practice. These days, Asma is responsible for the 14 planners in the Reading office, handling all things finance, events, fire safety and first aid. It’s fair to say we’d be lost without her!

Zena Foale-Banks

We love a Masterplan at Nexus Planning. One of our London-based Principal Planners, Zena Foale-Banks, walks us through the South of Romsey Town Centre Masterplan in the latest ‘Nexus: Year in Review’ series. As an area which wasn’t living up to its full potential, the team prepared a Masterplan to bring the South of Romsey back to life – putting people at the core. Hear how relationships with key stakeholders in the town ultimately made this project successful.

Jon Penrose

For many planners, inspiration starts at a young age. For Jon Penrose in our Manchester team, motivation began with the various regeneration initiatives he witnessed growing up in Liverpool. As a Senior Planner today, Jon specialises in delivering homes and strategic land projects. Hear about Jon’s journey in our latest ‘Year in Review’ series.

Zoe Knott

It’s incredibly rewarding to receive a resolution to grant for a major opportunity site we’ve been working on for a number of years. Even better when it’s for up to 1,100 new homes! Associate Planner, Zoe Knott, explains how we achieved this result in Daventry, in the latest of our ‘Year in Review’ Series.

Heather Lindley-Clapp

It’s no secret 2020 and 2021 have been challenging years so far. For several Nexans, juggling personal and professional lives while working full-time from home hasn’t been easy. In this clip, Associate Director Heather Lindley-Clapp shares her experiences of the past year, and explains how she’s got through it with the support of her team.

Hywel James

We’re privileged to work on a broad range of interesting projects at Nexus, across a number of different industries. Principal Planner Hywel James talks about a distinctive piece of work we recently completed for the film industry.

Together with the Reading team, Hywel secured planning permission for the expansion of commercial filming operations at internationally renowned film and television studio, Bray Studios, in Berkshire. The TV series now being produced is expected to be one of the biggest of all time, up alongside Game of Thrones!

Amy Petrikova

In the latest instalment of our ‘Nexus: Year in Review’ Series, Amy Petrikova, shares her story. A Principal Planner at Nexus since 2013, Amy took some time off work to travel a few years ago and sadly suffered a life-changing accident. Returning to work wasn’t easy. Hear how Amy has overcome these challenges through the support of those around her.

Sophie Bleasdale

The second in our ‘Year in Review’ series, today we hear from Graduate Planner, Sophie Bleasdale. Sophie joined Nexus straight out of university and assists the Manchester team with a wide range of projects. In this clip, she discusses one of her first projects: an application on behalf of the NHS Property Services, which will see the demolition of a rundown and surplus clinic to make way for new, much needed family homes.

Roger Tustain

To kick-start the series, we hear from Managing Director, Roger Tustain, to give us some insights on how Nexus has evolved since it started in 2013, and what the past year has been like for the team.