The town council is asking people what they think of the town and what services should be funded in the future. The responses will contribute towards the rewriting of the town plan and setting the budget for the next few years. A short online survey on the town plan asks what people like and dislike about Ludlow and what they would like to change. The council will also host consultation events. Questionnaires on the budget for are being delivered to every household. Again, there is an online survey.
The future of our town
Ludlow’s current town plan was written in 2010 and is out of date. The town council is now preparing a Community Led Plan. The council says:
We want to develop an ambitious five to ten-year vision for Ludlow. To shape this vision and to identify priorities for the town based on local opinion, we need to gain as many views from the community, and from key stakeholders as possible. We plan to use October to gain an initial insight into views from all members of our community and all age groups
We are aware that many people who live, work and visit Ludlow have a great love for the town and care deeply about its future. There is also a wealth of talent within interest groups and individuals who play an enormous part in adding to the vibrancy and lifeblood of the community.
The council has issued a brief questionnaire asking what makes people happy, sad or mad about Ludlow, and how our town could be made better.
You can complete the survey online.
Councillors will also be holding a pop up consultation at Tesco on 18 October and a “fun interactive event” at Ludlow Youth Centre on 19 October, 4.00pm to 7.00pm.
Raising and spending money
You may have already seen the budget consultation, which has been delivered to many homes in the town council area. It begins by saying that Shropshire Council is cutting its funding to Ludlow services and identifies several services at risk.
Twelve outdoor play areas and the visitor information service will lose all funding next year. In “subsequent years”, the annual grant from Shropshire Council to Ludlow Assembly Rooms and the funding of youth activities will go. Funding for the Buttercross Museum from Shropshire Council will end in March 2019.
The main question the town council is asking in its budget consultation is whether people would be willing to face an increase in council tax of 80p a week (Band D) to fund local services currently funded by Shropshire Council. Or would they prefer the funding for services to be scrapped to avoid an increase in council tax?
The consultation also asks how important residents think each of 15 existing services provided by Ludlow Town Council are. These range from the senior citizen’s Christmas Party and Christmas lights, to the Market and Buttercross Museum.
You can complete the budget survey online.
. There are 14 play areas in Ludlow. Twelve are currently operated by Shropshire Council. The popular Linney and the rather underused Sidney Road play area are run by Ludlow Town Council.
. The Assembly Rooms are in the final stages of agreeing a transfer of the property from Shropshire Council to an independent trust. Around £1.55 million will be spent on resolving existing problems with the fabric of the building, and on creating a combined box office and visitor information centre on Castle Street and a ground floor café. It is expected that the work, which is currently in negotiations between Shropshire Council and Assembly Rooms, will put the Assembly Rooms on a much stronger financial footing. The £1.55 million will be provided by the ERDF (an EU rural development fund) and the Arts Council.
. Shropshire Council’s local youth budget is due to shrink next year from £234,950 to £135,000. Further £97,000 will be spent on central support services and smaller scale youth activities. This proposal is subject to agreement by the cabinet next week and to public consultation. The Ludlow and Clee Local Joint Committee currently runs council funded youth services in our area. Under the new proposals, Ludlow will receive £18,000 for 2018/19 with no guarantee of a budget beyond then.