Local Government Regeneration Officer

The Job and What's Involved

In recent years local authorities everywhere have been investing heavily in regeneration. The term 'regeneration' can refer to various aspects of community development. It can mean, for example, economic regeneration in an area where the local industries have closed down, housing redevelopment in a rundown, unattractive residential area or social regeneration in an area of low income and skills, high unemployment and poor access to healthcare and education.

Regeneration is closely linked to community development and in some authorities is covered by the same department.

A local government regeneration officer:

  • Works on developing and delivering projects which support business start-ups, business growth, the creation of new jobs, the development of new skills and neighbourhood renewal.
  • Works with local communities and networks such as Local Strategic Partnerships, which are aimed at improving the quality of life.
  • Advises groups on the availability of grants from local and external sources.
  • Secures funding for organisations involved in housing improvement.
  • Secures funding for improving public transport networks.
  • Arranges training for voluntary or commercial groups.
  • Promotes tourism to the local area, both from within the UK and from abroad.
  • Helps implement action plans for neighbourhoods in need of priority treatment.
  • Helps local companies with local and international trade.
  • Promotes the local area as a location for investment.
  • Organises exhibitions and conferences promoting local urban renewal schemes.
  • Produces press releases and handles press interviews.
  • Prepares and circulates agendas for meetings.

In the course of their work, local government regeneration officers are likely to liaise with:

  • Other local authority departments such as planning and finance.
  • Networks such as the Association of Town Centre Management (ATCM).
  • National organisations which provide funding.
  • Potential developers to ensure their plans do not conflict with the council's regeneration strategy.
  • Trade union groups.
  • Business groups such as Chambers of Commerce.
  • Legal advisers in drawing up legal agreements.

Local government regeneration officers usually work 37 hours a week, but there might be some visits to groups in the evenings or at weekends. Most councils offer flexible hours, sometimes by a part-time or job-sharing contract. An increasing number operate flexitime schemes.

A local government regeneration officer is based in an office, but spends a lot of time travelling to meetings with various organisations and agencies.

Regeneration officers usually wear clothes appropriate to the occasion, for example dressing smartly when meeting with the Chamber of Commerce, but more casually when meeting local neighbourhood groups.

Starting pay for a local government regeneration officer is about £20,000 a year.

Getting Started with this Career Choice

Regeneration officers can work for a local authority, a contracted-out organisation or for a community agency. Jobs are more common in cities and are generally increasing as local authorities spend more on urban renewal. Job vacancies are advertised in Jobcentre Plus offices, on local council websites, in national newspapers, in professional journals and on the official website for local government recruitment www.lgjobs.com.

Most local authorities request that prospective employees complete a questionnaire about their medical history, and in some cases a medical examination may be required.

Education and Training

Most entrants to the job of local government regeneration officer have a degree, with preference given to those with degrees in subjects related to regeneration, such as social studies, housing or education.

A higher national certificate/diploma (HNC/HND) in a relevant subject may be an acceptable alternative for some authorities.

Several years' relevant experience in either the public or private sector is often also required, so this is may not be suitable as a first job after graduation.

A Few More Exams You Might Need

Most entrants will be trained on the job and are often encouraged to study towards postgraduate diplomas or higher degrees, particularly in subjects related to regeneration, such as community work, urban renewal, industrial development, crime studies, employment or the environment.

Local government regeneration officers are also usually expected to undertake Continuing Professional Development to keep themselves up to date.

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Skills and Personal Qualities Needed

Local government regeneration officers must have:

  • Negotiating skills for securing funds.
  • Decisiveness.
  • The ability to communicate with a wide range of people.
  • The ability to manage a budget.
  • Networking skills and a good memory for names and faces.
  • Tact and diplomacy.
  • Shrewd judgement.
  • The ability to work on their own initiative without supervision.

Your Long Term Prospects

There may be opportunities for promotion to such posts as senior regeneration officer, regeneration manager, principal regeneration officer or group leader. These internal vacancies are sometimes available only to serving local government employees.

It may also be possible to move into managerial or strategic planning posts in other departments of a local authority.

Get Further Information

Association of Town Centre Management (ATCM),
1 Queen Anne's Gate, Westminster,
London SW1H 9BT
Tel: 020 7222 0120
Website: www.atcm.org

Employers' Organisation for Local Government,
Layden House, 76-86 Turnmill Street,
London EC1M 5LG
Tel: 020 7296 6781
Website: www.lgjobs.com

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