Ben returns from NZ to lead engineering division

Ben Miller

Expansion continues at one of Wales’ leading architectural and planning consultants’ practices with the appointment of Ben Miller as Senior Engineer.

Mid Wales-based Hughes Architects has appointed Ben as it expands its drainage engineering, highways design and structural engineering services. He joins the teams based at Newtown, Welshpool and Aberystwyth covering Wales and the borders, including Shropshire and Herefordshire.

Ben, who is relocating to Wales following a successful career working in Australia and New Zealand since 2004, has worked with several large engineering consultancy companies in London, Canberra and Wellington.

His clients have included Transport for London, UK Highways Agency, City of London, and Wellington City Council.

Drainage solutions

Ben’s principal focus will be in the development of drainage solutions and strategies as part of the Welsh Government’s Sustainable Drainage Systems (SuDS) regulations and SAB approvals process within the local authorities and national parks.

Drainage proposals for any new development of more than one house in Wales, or where the construction area is more than 100sqm, have to be designed and built to SuDs regulations. Similar regulations exist within the English planning system.

Ben said: “I’m really looking forward to coming to Wales with my family for a new and exciting chapter in my career. I see that Hughes Architects is a dynamic architectural practice with quality projects and clients throughout Wales and England.

SAB approvals with local authorities and national parks

“I am aware that the changes to the sustainable drainage regulations in 2019 mean it is more important than ever to be able to provide in-depth compliant drainage solutions and designs to ensure the successful processing of the majority of the planning applications submitted.”

“These regulations are important as they are part of the solution to the improvement of water quality in the natural receiving environments and provide flood mitigation measures that benefit the communities these new developments are part of.”

He added: “I was inspired to see that Hughes Architects has signed up to the RIBA Climate Challenge and I’m proud the sustainable drainage design focus will be a part of these important climate improvement goals.”

“By providing these engineering services as part of an architectural and planning one-stop-shop we can provide our clients with an efficient and effective design service, as many of these design features should be realised at concept design with the development.

“Sustainable drainage solutions are produced at the same time as the building designs which reduces the potential for hold-ups in the planning application process.”

Drainage surveys and engineering

Doug Hughes, Managing Director and Principal Architect at Hughes Architects said: “We’re now in our 20th year of business and while the past year has been surreal in many ways, the demand for architectural and planning services has continued within what is a buoyant property sector.

“Drainage design has become a crucial part of our work. It ensures we can provide the best possible service to our clients as well as offering these services to property developers, architects and others.”

He added: “Ben brings with him a wealth of experience in civil and structural engineering at a senior role on significant projects. His knowledge and background are second to none and we’re very pleased to have him join the team at such an important time.”

Ben will work from Hughes Architects offices at Aberystwyth, Newtown and Welshpool.

More details about Hughes Architects can be found at www.hughesarchitects.co.uk