Dear Friends and Colleagues
In light of the current situation we wanted to share some of the forward planning Seaxburh Partners has been doing in order to support our clients and development teams in the coming months.
As you’re aware, we already work from home offices and therefore our day-to-day work will continue as normal. Given the recommendation to limit non-essential travel and in-person meetings, we have set up a new conference/video call service so that we can arrange virtual meetings in lieu of face-to-face as will likely be required. Please let us know if we can support your meetings.
We are assuming that planning projects will continue. Where site visits are required, as long as we are showing no symptoms, we will attend with appropriate precautions in line with current Government advice.
Meanwhile, we have also explored alternative ways to engage with local stakeholders and the public in the early and formal consultation phases of a project. We are aware that some Councils are already cancelling committee and other public meetings, that many influencers and decision makers are staying at home, and accept that public events are no longer advisable.
We expect this situation to continue for some time so have established a range of costed options that will enable us to arrange ‘virtual’ engagement activities – such as public exhibitions, VIP briefings, presentations and feedback gathering – complemented as necessary by ‘real-world’ activities such as PR, advertising and direct mail.
These options are likely to evolve over time and will be bespoke to the project in hand but, at the moment, we do not expect costs to be over and above a traditional face to face engagement programme. And, who knows, they may catch on!
You may be aware that we have an in-house designer and close links with a web/video team, both of whom are able to support us, and you, with the above.
We have been working with some of our non-planning clients on internal and external communications around COVID-19. Should you need any help on this front, please let us know.
We will continue to closely monitor Government advice and will adjust our activities accordingly.
Finally, and most importantly, we send our very best wishes to you, your teams and your families. Stay safe, and we will see you (most likely virtually) very soon.
Niki and Lucie