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Message from Clive Harridge on Stepping Down as CAP

19 May 2021

I am delighted to welcome Kelley Moore to the role of CAP Secretary–General. Kelley was appointed by CAPs Executive Committee in April and she formally took over the role on the 1 May 2021. Kelley has excellent credentials for the role and I wish her every success.

I would like to use this opportunity to briefly reflect on my time as CAP Secretary- General over the past 10 years and to thank those who helped me over the years.

I was appointed at the CAP Business Meeting in Montreal in 2010 with my position extended every two years thereafter. It was at the CAP 2020 virtual Business Meeting that I formally announced that I wished to step down.

Throughout my time as Secretary-General it was a real honour and privilege to have worked with the wonderful, hard working, unflappable and indomitable CAP Administrator Anette O’Donnell and four truly incredible Presidents: Professor Emeritus Cliff Hague OBE, Christine Platt, Dyan Currie AM and Eleanor Mohammed. In addition I have had the good fortune to have worked with many others involved including CAPs Vice Presidents and our Patron Trudi Elliott CBE. A big THANK YOU to all of you for your invaluable support and guidance to me personally during my time as Secretary-General.

I would like to give special mention and another big THANK YOU to the Royal Town Planning Institute which has provided office and administration support throughout my period of office and also to the New Zealand Planning Institute which has managed our web site in recent years.

An even bigger and public THANK YOU is owed to my lovely wife Judith and amazing daughters Natasha and Rebecca for their unfailing support and incredible perseverance during my time as Secretary-General. Being Secretary-General would just not have been possible without their backing.

Over the years as Secretary-General I have been hugely inspired and truly humbled by the amazing planners I have met from across the Commonwealth. I feel immensely proud to have been involved in CAP and represent an organisation which brings together such a fantastic community of excellent and highly committed planning professionals.

On stepping down from the Secretary-General role I retain many wonderful memories of the incredible people I have met and the activities undertaken. A few highlights include:

  • Representing CAP in meeting Her Majesty The Queen, HRH The Duke of Edinburgh and HRH The Prince of Wales on various occasions at Buckingham Palace, Clarence House and Marlborough House, London.

  • Receiving honorary Fellowship of the Ghana Institute of Planners at their 50th Anniversary Conference in Accra in 2019,

  • Attending several Commonwealth Observance celebrations at Westminster Abbey including hearing an amazing speech by the inspiring Malala Yousafzai.

  • Drinking ‘Singapore Slings’ at Raffles Hotel during a break from the CAP Business Meeting in Singapore (being part of CAP is not all hard work!).

Although I am standing down from the Secretary-General role, I will not be leaving CAP altogether and I will continue as an Honorary Vice President to contribute to the organisation in a number of areas including the roll out of the Rapid Urbanisation Toolkit being developed with the Prince's Foundation and contributing to the Governance Review.

CAP has developed and changed substantially over the years with a growing membership and increasing influence across the Commonwealth and beyond. Some of the key events and activities undertaken by CAP during the time I was in office include:

  • Formal establishment of CAP Young planners Network.

  • Introduction of CAP Awards Programme (2018)

  • Received major project grants from UN Habitat, Prince of Wales’s Charitable Fund, and the Commonwealth Foundation among others;

  • Conducted research into climate change, food security, urbanisation, resilience, health, planning education and other topics

  • Appointed first CAP Patron -Trudi Elliott CBE.

  • Completed governance review of role of Vice Presidents and Trustees.

  • Contributed to the development of the Rapid Urbanisation Toolkit - launched by HRH Prince Charles in video message at CAPs Fiji business meeting.

  • Undertook Subscription review during global economic crisis – led to reduction in subscription rate for a four year period.

  • Secured growth in membership - CAP now represents over 40,000 planners in all regions of the Commonwealth

  • Celebrated CAPs 40th anniversary in 2010 (now arranging our 50th anniversary celebrations)

  • Established a social media profile for CAP (still evolving!)

  • Prepared CAPs Fiji Declaration which called for urgent action by Commonwealth Governments to implement the UN New Urban Agenda and SDGs

  • Redesigned CAPs web site to include Blogs pages and Good Practice Platform.

  • Participated in launch of UNs Planners For Climate Action Initiative at COP 23 in Bonn.

  • Participated in CHOGM events including People’s Forums in Perth, Sri Lanka, Malta and London

  • Conducted surveys of the Planning Profession in the Commonwealth

  • Helped establish the Independent Forum of Commonwealth Organisations

I am sure that under CAPs current President Eleanor Mohammed supported by Kelly Moore and an excellent Executive Committee CAP will continue to flourish and strengthen its position at a global level and be a successful advocate for planners and planning to help make the world a better place for all.

Finally to Kelley, my successor – “Good luck and best wishes for a successful future with CAP. I hope you enjoy being part of this amazing organisation with such wonderful people just as much as I have”.

See the following pages for a few photographs of the many fond memories I have of my time as CAP Secretary-General.

Clive Harridge

May 2021

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