What is the future for our county? The big plan debate. Ludlow, 30 November 2017

The Ludlow and Clee Local Joint Committee (LJC) is to hold a special meeting on 30 November to discuss Shropshire Council’s draft local plan. This sets out ambitious policies to expand housing and employment across the county.

Ludlow councillor Andy Boddington is chairman of the LJC, says:

“This opportunity to debate our ideas about the future of the county. Shropshire Council’s new plans aim for economic growth and building nearly 1,500 homes a year across the county. Much of this will be in the north and east of the county but we also need to work out what is best for the more rural areas, including Ludlow.”

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Ludlow still faces rates hikes despite lower bills after MP’s intervention and appeals

After effective negotiations and some successful appeals, the overall business rates bill for Ludlow has gone down. The town had been facing above average increases after the revaluation of properties last year. It is still facing above average increases but more than seventy businesses have had their rates bills reduced since the increases were announced.[1] One in nine Ludlow businesses will see a reduction in rateable value and the changes have moved three local businesses out of the business rate regime altogether. The reduction in rateable values for those businesses that pay rates under the current rules amounts to £120,000. That’s a 10.4% reduction and good news for local companies and traders.

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Council leader should apologise for using vulnerable refugee children to justify council’s financial black hole

A rather unpleasant row has blown up over comments made by Shropshire Council leader Peter Nutting on BBC Radio Shropshire earlier in the week. Speaking on why the council is struggling to balance its budget, he said that ten child refugees had been taken into care, claiming they have cost the council £1 million. He identified the nationality of the children. This was careless talk that could turn public attitudes against supporting vulnerable young people. It was also dangerous talk that could threaten the youngsters themselves.

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Planning application submitted for 200 homes south of Rocks Green and A4117

Pickstock Homes has submitted a planning application for 200 homes behind the Nelson Inn. The application is a so-called hybrid application. It is in outline for the full site and a full planning application for 68 of the homes. The site is allocated for housing in the local plan, SAMDev. The scheme is essentially the same as that presented to the town council and Ludford parish council last summer. It is expected to take six years to build.

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Approval of housing on Friars Walk has brought me to the end of my tether on planning in Shropshire

Council officers have approved a plan for two homes on Friars Walk. This scheme has been controversial from the outset. The town council objected, as did several residents. I objected and three times asked for the scheme to be called in to the South Planning Committee. All requests were refused. I was so angry I complained. I was due to meet council leader Peter Nutting at 9.30am yesterday morning to discuss the matter. That meeting was postponed for a week after the planning committee chair could not attend for perfectly acceptable personal reasons.

Yesterday lunchtime, officers approved the scheme, something they seem to have been determined to do since the beginning of the year. I am furious about this.

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