15 June 2016
It is with very great sadness that we report that David Alderson, a planning director here at WYG, has passed away.
David, who headed our Milton Keynes office for eight years, contributed significantly to our planning business. He was passionately committed to good planning and had worked for over 30 years in the public and private sectors, mostly at senior level. Before his career in consultancy, David held senior management positions in local government, including as a Corporate Manager and Head of Planning, Transportation and Regeneration at Northampton Borough Council.
Of his many achievements, David was particularly proud of his work for the Defence Infrastructure Organisation, providing much-needed homes for returning soldiers. Most recently, he led the team which secured planning approval for more than 900 homes for soldiers and their families on Salisbury Plain, the culmination of three years’ work. In 2015, WYG’s Salisbury Plain Masterplan, again led by David, was highly commended in the Royal Town Planning Institute’s Awards for Planning Excellence. Also last year, the new Beacon Barracks in Stafford, a home for 2,500 military personnel and 346 families, opened on time and to budget, following work by David with a large multi-disciplinary team.
David was a kind and wise friend to many, not just at WYG and throughout the profession, but also within his local community. Unfailingly courteous, dapper and a real gentleman, David also had a wonderfully dry sense of humour. His witty quips, sense of fun and grace under pressure made the Milton Keynes office a great place to work. In addition, he was an inspirational mentor to the many young planners in his charge.
Outside work, David was a huge Middlesbrough football fan, keen rambler and gardener, and a great cook. He was extremely knowledgeable about history and politics and kept his finger on the pulse of current affairs.
Perhaps David’s character might best be summed up in his own words. Interviewed by Planning magazine last autumn for an article on the Beacon Barracks project, David said: “It was the warmth people felt about our armed forces that helped [the project] move so quickly. It shows what can be achieved if everyone adopts a ‘can do’ philosophy: that spirit is replicable across any project if people choose to get involved."
David’s ‘can do’ philosophy has been a great inspiration to us all.
Our thoughts and prayers are with David’s family.