BRIGHTON firm Griffith Smith has beefed up its team of planning experts by hiring Jill Whittaker from Brighton and Hove Unitary Authority.
She joins forces with planning expert Bob Hinton, an old adversary. Together, they aim to provide planning services to clients dealing with local authorities - from private citizens to major developers.
Until now, Whittaker has spent her whole career in public practice. She was employed by Brighton Council for 12 years and she then spent a further year as a senior commercial lawyer at its replacement body, the Unitary Authority.
Whittaker said the move would allow her to concentrate on planning, her principal area of interest and expertise.
"It was the right opportunity at the right time," Whittaker commented.
She added that one of the attractions of working in priv-ate practice was that more resources would be made available to her.
A spokeswoman for the unitary authority's legal services department said the whole team wished Whittaker well in her new position.
She added that the team had recently been awarded ISO 9001 quality accreditation and was going from "strength to strength".