What is the procedure for rough sleepers in Shropshire over the winter?

Rough sleeping is one of the big problems of modern society. There are a lot of reasons why people rough sleep, including difficulties with the benefits system and problems with housing. Very often rough sleepers have mental health problems, sometimes triggered by trauma as is often the case for ex-military rough sleepers.

Shropshire Council has good rough sleeper policies and offers accommodation all winter long. But not everyone wants to take this up and many refuse mental health support. This is where specialist workers like the Shrewsbury Ark can do a lot to help. But some cases prove to be difficult to resolve and people cannot be forced to take help.

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Dodgy pedestrian crossing between Aldi and Tesco on Station Drive is to be fixed

Thank you everyone who has reported the problem with the pedestrian controlled lights outside Aldi on Station Drive. This is a busy crossing that links our two supermarkets together.

But it hasn’t operated properly for several weeks. Previously the lights changed fairly quickly and people got used to that. Now, they take around fifteen seconds to change. The problem has been caused by roadworks by Western Power Distribution last year disrupting sensors. Shropshire Council says it is going to get it fixed as a priority.

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I am putting in place a stricter comments policy immediately

Way back in the late 1980s we were running a very early version of social media at the Open University. One Friday night, I was alerted to an abusive conversation going on about how much debate it would take to hang all the homosexuals in Britain. I shut down the debate immediately. I suspended the officer from all university computing (ergo, he would use lose his job), went to his 21st birthday party and floored him in my office first thing Monday morning. It is rumoured that everyone stopped work in the corridor as I made the man (young and foolish) justify his case to to get back online.

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Fifty-year plan to improve Mortimer Forest looks good

If you down into the woods this weekend, spare a thought for how they are managed and might be improved. The Forestry Commission has published a fifty-year plan for the Mortimer Forest and wants to hear views by 1 February.

The plan’s vision is for the 1,029-hectare forest to be become a haven for people, nature and the economy. Broadleaf cover will be increased to over one-fifth of the forest over the next ten years and to much larger areas over the subsequent decades. Views including from Ludlow will be improved. There is no mention of building accommodation in the forest.

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Ludlow’s Corve Street to be properly resurfaced in February with three Sunday closures

Corve Street was resurfaced by Shropshire Council’s former contractors, Ringway, in 2017. It was a very poor quality job that began to fail within weeks. It was immediately clear that the road would have be resurfaced. That work will now take place on three consecutive Sundays, 10th, 17th and 24th February. The work is timed to be least damaging to local trade, the visitor economy and buses.

I am glad this work is going ahead. It will be disruptive but Corve Street will be much the better for it.

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