Shropshire Council is withdrawing support for the county’s rural communities

The council customer service point in Ludlow Library is open four days a week. But plans are afoot to reduce its opening to two days a week, Tuesday and Friday. This will mean that vulnerable people will find it harder to access support and get referrals to the food bank. Age Concern told the Shropshire Star that the countywide cuts will be a serious blow for the elderly. Shrewsbury will though get a gold-plated service, far better than Ludlow and other rural towns.

Other cuts to community support are on the way. Shropshire Council is no longer interested in supporting the rural communities in our county.

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Oswestry and Shrewsbury get most of Shropshire Council’s investment cash – Ludlow gets a few crumbs

Numbers dug out by a Bridgnorth resident reveal that the north of the county gets the lion’s share of Shropshire Council’s capital investment. The spend per head in Shrewsbury, Oswestry and Market Drayton is ten times as high as in Ludlow. We get barely more than a quarter of the money that goes to Bridgnorth. Ludlow has gained just 1% of the capital spend across the county.

This is not for want of trying. In May, us unitary councillors submitted a proposal for investment in Ludlow to Shropshire Council leader Peter Nutting. Three months later he has still not found time to come to our town to discuss it.

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Calling on artists in Ludlow and beyond to paint our town’s biggest mural

The former Budgens store in Ludlow is an eyesore. The building is to be redeveloped.

Today, I have agreed with the new owner to use the building as Ludlow’s biggest canvas. All those ugly boards will be painted up as a giant mural during the Food Festival. The project will be designed to encourage people to stop, stare and applaud.

We have less than a month to get this project together.

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No lifts in Ludlow station upgrade. No fully accessible taxi in town. We should stop treating the disabled as second class

Major works are underway at Ludlow station. The scheme is to put a temporary footbridge in place while the old footbridge is repaired along with the steps leading up to it. There are no plans to install lifts for those who are disabled or have limited mobility. A couple of weeks before, Shropshire Council refused a licence for the only fully disabled access taxi in Ludlow because it did not meet the Euro 5 standard. You can’t get into a Ludlow Town Council meeting if you have severe mobility problems.

In Shropshire, the disabled remain second-class citizens. We must change this.

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Sudden death of much loved BBC Radio Shropshire’s Vicki Archer reminds us how vital local radio is in our lives

Like so many listeners to BBC Radio Shropshire, I am shaken to hear of the sudden death of Vicki Archer at the age of 41. She would normally be broadcasting to our county as I type this. Tributes are pouring out on social media and on air. They are richly deserved.

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