Shropshire Council planners have given planning permission for the demolition of Harvest House and its replacement by a modern 4-storey residential block with 11 apartments for young people (16/00761/FUL).
I support this development, as does the town council, but I wanted the scheme to go to the South Planning Committee for decision.
This is a significant development of modern design in a conservation area. There are also strong objections from the nearest neighbours. I believe that major planning decisions like this should be made in a public forum, not behind closed doors. However, it was decided that the decision will be made by officers in Shirehall not by the planning committee. I think that was wrong in principle.
Funding for the Foyer is secured for another year. This follows a determined campaign by People4Ludlow and councillors. But there are significant doubts over whether there will be sufficient income after March 2018 from Shropshire Council. The council wants to fund the project but it is facing a two million shortfall in its budget in 2018/19. Everyone is expecting that the financial black hole to get bigger. Without some degree of security on funding, it is unlikely that the Foyer extension will go ahead.