the independent consultancy

market housing - affordable housing - retirement living

0161 457 1454

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Why use us?

  • We provide a personal and adaptable service, according to each client's understanding of the planning system and the level of support they require.

    Our advice is grounded in the previous experience of our team working for housebuilders, high-profile property consultancies and local government.

    Fees are set at the start of a project, taking account of its scale and complexity and utilising stage payments for larger projects.

  • Our focus on long-term relationships means that our clients can be sure of impartial specialist advice with an honest assessment of the prospects of success and any risks involved.

    With Mosaic, our collaborative working means that there will always be a senior member of staff adding value to your project and who is able to respond to issues arising.

Our history

  • Mosaic was co-founded in 2006 by Paul Williams and Leon Armstrong. Having worked for planning consultancies in the past, both wanted to start a practice which could provide a personal and agile planning service to the development industry.

    Since then, Mosaic has established itself as a trusted development partner for numerous clients, providing planning expertise on market housing, affordable housing and specialist care provision for the elderly.

  • Andrew Jalali joined the company in 2013 bringing an enterprising attitude and skills enabling Mosaic to offer housing needs surveys and site promotional documents.

    Samantha Lee joined us in 2018 to manage a growing case load of commercial and industrial applications and support the team.

    As many planning consultancies lose their identity through mergers, Mosaic remains independent, with our long-serving team offering a personal service.

Our services

Some of our main areas of work are listed below, but let us know how we can help with the needs of your own particular project.

Planning applications

Our submissions maximise the prospects for approval by anticipating and addressing the potential planning issues likely to arise:

  • Pre-application discussions
  • Planning Statements
  • Design and Access Statements
  • Supporting statements covering affordable housing, heritage, open space and regeneration matters
  • Site sequential tests and open space assessments
  • Reviewing financial contributions
  • Attendance at Committee
  • Reviewing decisions and attached conditions

Planning appeals

If your application has been refused or not decided by the target date, we will discuss whether an appeal is your best option:

  • Advice on prospects of success
  • Alternative methods of written representations, informal hearing or public inquiry
  • Arranging legal representation where required
  • Producing Statements of Case, Proofs of Evidence and acting as expert witness

Site appraisals

Our blend of planning and development experience means we assess the development potential of land and premises from a practical, commercial perspective:

  • From initial opinions to formal written advice
  • Establishing lawful use and permitted development rights
  • Reviewing opportunities and constraints for alternative uses and new development
  • Recommended strategy with actions and timescales

Project management

Progress through planning usually depends on contributions from other disciplines, which we can co-ordinate on your behalf:

  • Working alongside your preferred advisors or our suggested partners
  • Providing briefs to property professionals such as architects, chartered surveyors or lawyers
  • Involving technical advisors on flood risk, ecology, highways, noise and contamination
  • Reviewing output and co-ordinating the overall case

Community consultation

We manage, host and attend engagement programmes designed to reach a wide cross-section of a community:

  • Graphic design and website production
  • Arranging and publicising consultation events
  • Meetings with council officers, community groups, councillors and businesses
  • Feedback analysis alongside Statements of Community Involvement

Want to read more? Download our Community Consultation brochure.

Planning policy representations

The Local Plan is the starting point in deciding a planning application. Representations to emerging draft policies in order to protect your position or seek a change may be a crucial part of your strategy:

  • Monitoring Local Plan progress
  • Reviewing evidence base
  • Testing draft policies against national guidance
  • Representations on provision of housing and employment land
  • Promotion of specific sites for allocation
  • Attending Local Plan examinations
Community consultation Community Consultation Planning appeals Planning appeals Planning applications Planning applications Planning policy representations Planning policy representations Project management Project management Site appraisals site appraisals

Our recent projects

  • Affordable Rural Housing

    Client:
    MCI Developments with Equity Housing
    Proposal:
    23 ‘rural exception’ dwellings
    Location:
    Proffits Lane, Helsby
    Authority:
    Cheshire West & Chester

    Issues:

    National planning policy provides for limited affordable housing for community needs in the Green Belt as an ‘exception’ to the usual restrictive planning policies. However, despite constructive engagement with the Parish Council, there was vigorous local opposition. Compelling evidence was therefore provided to demonstrate local housing need which was supported by the Planning Committee.

    Outcome:

    Planning application approved in November 2017.

  • Local Plan Representations

    Client:
    Persimmon Homes
    Proposal:
    Release of Green Belt Land for Housing
    Location:
    Hazelbadge Road, Poynton
    Authority:
    Cheshire East

    Issues:

    The draft Cheshire East Local Plan Strategy proposed a low housing target which failed to align with economic growth forecasts. It also lacked allocations in the authority’s northern towns, which are located in an area of high demand and low affordability but constrained by Green Belt.

    Outcome:

    Local Plan adopted with an increased housing requirement and an allocation for 150 dwellings at the site following Green Belt review. Full planning permission is expected in mid-2019.

  • Town Centre Mixed-Use

    Client:
    Rowlinson Construction/Housing Capital Trust
    Proposal:
    117 Private Rental Apartments with offices and ground floor retail
    Location:
    Stockport Sorting Office
    Authority:
    Stockport

    Issues:

    The application involved conversion of a vacant landmark building in central Stockport, close to rail and bus stations. It was necessary to demonstrate how regeneration and town centre living benefits outweighed loss of employment, and that retail uses would not adversely affect the primary shopping area. The incorporation of ‘green walls’ boosted environmental sustainability.

    Outcome:

    Application approved October 2018 following Section 106 legal agreement.

  • Planning Appeal - Greenfield Urban Extension

    Client:
    Persimmon Homes
    Proposal:
    Full application for 300 dwellings
    Location:
    Lee Hall, Westhoughton
    Authority:
    Bolton

    Issues:

    The site was ‘Protected Open Land’, identified to meet long-term development needs. In refusing the application, the Council claimed to have a five year supply of housing land. We demonstrated that many of the claimed sites were unrealistic or unviable, and that a potential by-pass route would not be prejudiced by approving the application.

    Outcome:

    Allowed on appeal after public inquiry December 2017.

  • Conservation Area Redevelopment

    Client:
    Belong Care Villages
    Proposal:
    104 unit specialist care facility
    Location:
    Oxford Road, Birkdale
    Authority:
    Sefton

    Issues:

    Following refusal by the Council, an appeal inspector identified the main issue to be whether the proposal would preserve or enhance the character and appearance of a Conservation Area. The existing building did not make a positive contribution. Although the new building would be of a considerable scale, it could be accommodated by the relatively large plot and design features would break up its massing.

    Outcome:

    Appeal allowed in December 2016.

  • Affordable Housing

    Client:
    MCI Developments with Places for People
    Proposal:
    52 affordable dwellings
    Location:
    Halfpenny Lane, Longridge
    Authority:
    Preston

    Issues:

    Although outside of the Local Plan settlement boundary, the site would become ‘infill’ once adjacent housing already approved is developed. The Council lacked a 5 year housing supply and weight was given to provision of additional affordable housing.

    Outcome:

    Planning permission granted February 2019.

  • Specialist Retirement Living

    Client:
    Belong Care Villages
    Proposal:
    Specialist care village with 72 care spaces, 34 apartments and 3 guest bedrooms
    Location:
    Wirral Waters
    Authority:
    Wirral

    Issues:

    The Council is supporting a new ‘city neighbourhood’ with high levels of housing and employment, together with supporting leisure, retail, community, health and education uses. We provided evidence of demand for specialist care provision to enable older residents and those with dementia to remain part of the community.

    Outcome:

    Planning permission granted April 2019.

  • Temporary Storage Building

    Client:
    Apollo Fire Detectors
    Proposal:
    Aluminium framed building ancillary to existing manufacturing facility
    Location:
    Broadmarsh Industrial Area, Havant
    Authority:
    Havant

    Issues:

    Client sought rapid and cost-effective solution to short-term requirement for storing and packing finished goods. However, local authorities do not support buildings of non-permanent construction without restriction.

    Outcome:

    Time-limited permission granted April 2019.

  • Warehousing and Distribution

    Client:
    United Pallet Network
    Proposal:
    Additional B8 premises (5,000 sq.m.) for new occupier
    Location:
    Fradley Park Industrial Estate, Staffordshire
    Authority:
    Lichfield

    Issues:

    Although the site was within an existing industrial estate, it was partly outside of development boundary in an outdated Local Plan. The existing local employer had to relocate to allow expansion, but we highlighted the lack of alternative large-scale sites suitable for distribution uses.

    Outcome:

    Application approved December 2018.

Some of our clients

  • Aganto Temporary Building Specialists
  • Anwyl Group
  • Belong - your life, your pace, your way
  • Bowsall - delivering affordable housing
  • Equity Housing Group
  • Galliford Try
  • The Guinness Partnership
  • Housing Capital Trust
  • HTS Industrial Building Specialists
  • Magenta Living
  • MCI Developments
  • Melrose Homes
  • Morris
  • Mosscare St. Vincents Housing
  • Novo Property Group
  • Persimmon - Together, we make a home
  • Pozzoni Architecture
  • Rowlinson Construction
  • Southway Housing Trust
  • Spaciotempo Industrial Buildings
  • United Pallet Network
  • "Mosaic are first class. I cannot recommend them enough."

    Mark Hutchinson

    Director @ Aganto Ltd.
  • "I have worked with Mosaic director Paul Williams for over 14 years at various companies and found him to be extremely knowledgeable with a very proactive and ‘can do’ attitude. HisTheir tenacious approach to what can be a very complex process gives you confidence that they will always achieve the right result."

    Phil Dolan

    Managing Director @ Anwyl Land
  • "All the team at Mosaic are professional, proficient and commercial in dealing with any planning problem I throw at them. Over the years they have managed dozens of planning applications for me successfully. They are cost-effective and quick to respond to any query I may have. I would recommend them to any land owner or developer."

    Andrew Garnett

    Director @ MCI Developments
  • "Mosaic were very straightforward to work with. They understood our planning requirements and advised us at every turn in getting the best result in the quickest time."

    Steve Welch

    Project Manager @ Unipart Rail
  • "Mosaic have managed a number of schemes on our behalf. Their commercially-led approach to planning has enabled us to focus on our core business with the confidence that our applications will be dealt with in a professional, personal and diligent manner. I would definitely endorse working with them."

    Leigh Cresswell

    Business Development Director @ Partner Construction
  • "UPN extended the buildings on our 19 acre hub facility site at Fradley Park, Lichfield from 120,000 square feet to 170,000 square feet. Due to operational pressures, the work had to be carried out as quickly and seamlessly as possible. Thanks to Mosaic the whole project was carried out successfully within the minimum time frame. They understood our planning requirements and provided help and guidance at every stage."

    Geoff Allard

    United Pallet Network

  • "We have worked with the Mosaic team for many years and Their understanding of the affordable housing and Extra Care sectors are second to none. Their depth of knowledge of the planning process , coupled with a commercial edge, helps bring a tremendous amount of added value and opportunity to what sometimes can be a challenging industry to deliver in."

    Roy Carthy

    Senior Business Partner @ Your Housing Group

Meet the team

Paul Williams

Director

BA (Hons) MTP MRTPI

Likes:

About Paul:

After working for Stockport Council, housebuilder Persimmon and property consultancy Bidwells, I’ve had direct experience of pretty much every aspect of planning. As well as giving me in-depth knowledge, this means I automatically see projects from a range of perspectives. Planning advice should not be provided in a vacuum, divorced from the likely reactions of the community or the commercial realities of implementation.

I help my clients to make sense of a planning system which has become incomprehensible to many after decades of piecemeal reform, by providing clear advice about realistic outcomes and the best ways to achieve them.

In addition to working alongside colleagues through our team-based approach, I have focussed on promoting strategic sites and appearing at Local Plan Examinations throughout the North West.

Leon Armstrong

Director

BA (Hons) DipTP MRTPI

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About Leon:

I have been a planning consultant for over a decade and gained experience across the residential, industrial, health care and retail sectors. I predominantly focus on residential developments, involving analysis of five year housing land supply, affordable needs and regeneration matters.

I have obtained permission for housing schemes from small rural exception developments in the Green Belt to large contaminated sites in the urban area. I gain satisfaction from bringing derelict land back into use and providing affordable housing for those in need, such as young families and first time buyers.

Andrew Jalali

Senior Planner

BA (Hons) MSc MRTPI

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About Andrew:

I manage a range of development projects and have secured permission for changes of use, market and affordable housing and industrial developments including distribution warehouses and manufacturing facilities.

I lead our community consultation service, providing the management, hosting and graphic design for meetings, events and websites to engage with all sections of society.

I have found that local politics in planning can make the process both exciting and dramatic, which helps bring into perspective the importance of promoting the benefits of a development, such as in the delivery of affordable homes.

Samantha Lee

Planner

MTCP (Hons)

Likes:

About Sam:

Since graduating from the University of Manchester with my planning masters, I have been involved in a range of projects from large regeneration schemes in prominent locations to securing permission for changes of use and advertisement consents in out of town areas.

Being good with numbers, I enjoy analysing the housing demand figures and five year housing land supply. I am able to translate this confusing and overwhelming information into pictures and diagrams with the range of design and mapping software under my belt.

The housing market is a concern to many people, especially the younger generation. I would like to become a specialist in this field during my time with the company; I intend to develop my understanding of housing and employment projections so that the need for new housing can be clearly communicated to others.

Come say hello!

Mosaic Town Planning
10th Floor
Chancery Place
50 Brown Street
Manchester M2 2JG
Tel:
0161 457 1454
Email:
enquiries@mosaictownplanning.co.uk