Welcome To

Silverback Planning Solutions Ltd

Mark Turner BA(Hons) MA

"A pragmatic planner who wants to solve problems"

Expert Planning Solutions Tailored to Your Vision

With over two decades of dedicated experience in the intricate world of planning, I bring a wealth of expertise to the table. Having served across various councils in Berkshire, Hampshire, Surrey, Kent, and Norfolk, including a tenure as a Chief Planning Officer, I understand the nuanced challenges inherent in navigating the planning landscape.

Unconventional Problem-Solver with a Track Record of Success

My journey began long before I delved into planning, honing my skills in problem-solving roles that demanded innovative thinking and a penchant for challenging conventional wisdom. I firmly believe that the status quo isn’t always the best path forward, and my tenure reflects a history of breaking barriers and finding solutions beyond the ordinary.

A Unique Perspective: Bridging the Gap Between Public and Private Sectors

My time as an Associate Partner in a private mixed practice in Oxfordshire provided invaluable insights into both sides of the planning equation. Collaborating seamlessly with surveyors and architects, I ensured that the focus remained on securing planning permissions, even amidst differing perspectives. This ability to understand and navigate the complexities from all angles is what sets me apart in delivering tailored solutions for my clients.

Passionate Educator and Mentor

As a firm believer in giving back to the profession, I’ve dedicated myself to nurturing the next generation of planners, surveyors, and solicitors through lectures in universities and mentoring programs like the RTPI’s Leadership Nurture scheme. My passion for planning extends beyond professional endeavours, and I take pride in instilling this enthusiasm in others, ensuring a legacy of excellence in the field.

Committed to Every Client, Every Time

Regardless of the scale or complexity of the project, I approach each client’s application with the same level of dedication and care. From multi-million-pound developments to modest home extensions, I treat each endeavour as if it were my own family’s application, ensuring that your vision receives the attention and commitment it deserves.


  • First-class honours degree in Urban and Environmental Planning
  • Masters Degree (with merit) in Town Planning
  • Chartered member of the Royal Town Planning Institute, contributing to its Conduct & Discipline Appeals Panel

After more than 20 years seeing the system being blamed by all, I believe its time to use it properly, to deliver the beautiful developments it should.

Here are examples of some of the projects I have worked on.

The Royal Courts of Justice

Formal Proceedings

I have 100% success with appeals in Public Inquiries, Informal Hearings and Written Representations, acting for both Local Authorities and private clients.  I have also regularly given evidence in the Courts, being praised by Justice Ouseley for the manner in which I had explained a complex history of over 50 years of planning breaches. 

Park Place, Remenham

Park Place, Remenham

I spent several years working with the owner of this stunning listed building and registered historic estate.  Plans were approved that facilitated the restoration of the house and allowed for new dwellings.  When it was sold, Park Place was the most expensive dwelling in the country, £150 million.


Protection of Tourist Economy

I am the only planner in the country to have successfully put forward planning arguments to the Courts to prevent hotels, which were vital to the Council’s tourist economy, being used to house asylum seekers.  This was even more relevant as, only a matter of weeks before, the same Judge had dismissed actions from other Councils who had tried to make the same arguments.

Dilapidated Dwelling

New dwellings in the Green Belt

Following several unsuccessful applications and appeal decisions, my client instructed me.  I was able to put forward a complex argument to demonstrate that the building in question, although dilapidated ,remained in lawful use as a dwelling.  Once this had been approved I put forward a scheme to demolish this building (and the accompanying sheds) and replace it with a contemporary design family home.

Planning exists to protect the public interest. It should be easy to access, easy to understand, and easy to play a part in. Unfortunately that is not the case which is where, as your consultant, I come into my own.

What People I've Worked With Say About Me

"Self praise is no recommendation"

"Mark Turner is an extremely able planning officer and one of the best public inquiry witnesses in the business. He has a deep grasp of and enthusiasm for his subject, which translates into real attention to detail within written planning evidence. His presentational skills are excellent and he presents compIex planning arguments at hearings and inquiries with flare and conviction."
"Mark is extremely approachable, cooperative and provides highly professional and effective planning advice. With his many years of experience in senior positions at various Local Authorities, we have found his approach to be more relevant and less onerous than with other planning consultants. Accordingly, we have full confidence in his advice and extensive knowledge."
“I first worked with Mark almost 20 years ago when I was a very junior barrister and he was an enforcement officer at Slough BC. Since then he has risen up through the ranks and we have kept in touch. We worked together over the last couple of years on significant planning enforcement matters arising in Great Yarmouth. He is an outstanding planning and enforcement officer. He combines a deep understanding of these two areas with an ability to quickly see the wood for the trees. I am sure that he will make a success of private practice and be an asset to any client who instructs him.”
"I was having my usual battle with the council who were refusing to grant planning permission for an extension on my house. Mark came into his own, fighting for me in my appeal. The end result was a very comprehensive and well thought out set of documents, that showed off all the errors in the council’s decision, and demonstrated how little my extension would affect anybody who lived anywhere near me. Basically, I live in the middle of nowhere, and it’s virtually impossible to see my house from any angle. So, what their problem was, I don’t know, but I think it was something to do with me. The planning inspector completely agreed with everything that had been put forward, almost quoting Mark word for word in her decision. Mark stayed in touch after the decision to make sure the builders could get straight on with the work. He was a great help to me, during a very frustrating time in my life."
Chris Tarrant OBE
TV Personality
“Mark offers vast experience in planning from both sides of the fence. He is a first rate planner who can be trusted to get it right.”