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The new recruits have strengthened the company across the country with the addition of one Senior Planner, two Associates and the promotion of James Lacey to Equity Partner after 12 years at Vail Williams.

James leads the planning team nationally which now includes Associates Jane Terry in Guildford, and Louise Cutts in Solent and James Williams in the Gatwick region.

The new arrivals represent a strengthening of Vail Williams’ offering, with experience ranging across the public and private sectors, ready for an improving economic climate in which clients are seeking to develop and advance their property interests.

Associate Jane Terry brings 30 years of expertise having previously worked at Bell Cornwell and at Head of Service level for a local authority, with experience of county, city and district councils.

Associate Louise Cutts boasts a 20-year career in the public sector, including 10 years as Principal Planner in the Major Applications Team at Eastleigh Borough Council.

Fellow Senior Planner James Williams cut his teeth advising private sector telecommunication companies on the roll-out of mobile networks, before gaining significant experience in planning policy for local authorities, including advising on Gatwick Airport’s potential expansion.

James Lacey said: “At Vail Williams we’ve grown a very strong reputation for the expert planning support we offer our clients. These three new appointments build on that to create a truly market-leading team which I am very proud to lead.”

James is promoted to Equity Partner after joining Robert Shaw and Partners in 1999 that was acquired in 2003 by Vail Williams. James has achieved planning permission for housebuilders, institutions, public sector and land owners over the last 16 years. He has worked on schemes across the UK.

Matthew Samuel-Camps CEO said “James Lacey’s appointment is a huge credit to him and a reflection of the work that he has led in building our planning practice and its first-rate market reputation.

“It also reflects the partnership’s commitment to giving colleagues in the firm the opportunity to develop within the business.”

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