Author: andybodders

It’s a farce – Shropshire Council’s Norwich crew closes Ludlow roads for unnecessary work on ‘Super Saturday’

Yesterday, contractors drove 200 miles from Norwich to resurface Dinham and Linney. That’s despite the council’s commitment to using local contractors and to becoming carbon neutral. The works also began on a day when King Street was closed and pubs and cafes reopened. The work was four days later than scheduled. No one in Shirehall seemed to know this was happening. Or of they did, they didn’t care about the disruption to traffic and trade on the most important day for Ludlow this year. This work was not necessary. The residents of Dinham and Linney don’t think the work should have been done. But a mile away, Parys Road is collapsing. The recent patching on this road will not survive next winter. This problem is not about broken roads. It is about a broken highways operation in Shropshire Council. The council has embarrassed itself this weekend. But I don’t think it cares so much as a pothole.

Hospitality in Ludlow reopens this weekend – enjoy a cake and a beer (and take care) #ludlowisopen

Ludlow is at its best when the pubs throng with customer and the tables in its cafes and restaurants are full. When there is a crowd on King Street and a crush on the market. Being close to strangers has long been part of our national experience.  Shambling along the streets. Jostling at the bar in the pubs. Crowding into the markets. At pop concerts. Less pleasantly, on trains and queuing for toilets. From today, we can go to cafes and pubs. From Wednesday, Ludlow Market is expected to have more stalls. Being closer that one metre has been banned. Along with shaking hands and hugging friends. It won’t be Ludlow as normal. It will be close encounters and a strange kind. But life will begin to come back to our town centre. People should, of course, take care. Media headlines have concentrated abuse of lockdown rules. But most people in Ludlow have shown common sense during lockdown and I am sure they will continue to do so.  We should stay local and shop local.

Bromfield Post Office and Village Shop to close from the end of August – we need to think of alternative provision

Ludlow Farmshop has announced that Bromfield Post Office & Village Shop will close permanently on 31 August 2020. This is a big loss to Bromfield parish, whose residents have benefited from the convenience of a local store, along with postal and banking facilities. But the operation has been loss making for several years. Those losses, funded by the Earl of Plymouth trustees, have increased. Covid-19 has been the final blow. With the temporary closure of The Clive and Ludlow Kitchen, and reduced trade on these reopening, no more losses can be sustained. It is expected that post office staff will be transferred to other parts of the business. I don’t think we should give up on a post office service in Bromfield. The parish has an elderly population and many rely on the shop for newspapers and groceries, as well as post office services. Commenting as Shropshire Councillor for the parish and chair of the parish council, I think we should explore options for a post office service for at least a few hours a week in Bromfield.

Local radio has excelled during #coronavirus but BBC axes Clare from the Eric and Clare breakfast

Our local media has served our community well during the Covid-19 crisis and lockdown. National news provided us with the big picture but what we have needed most is the local picture. Our local newspapers and local radio have given us that. We are coming out of the emergency in a better position than we might have done because of the strength of our local media. Despite this success, the BBC today has announced cuts amounting to £25m in regional broadcasting, including to Inside Out and local radio. BBC Radio Shropshire has fronted its breakfast programme with two presenters for nearly a decade. Eric and Clare. It proved a successful format for a programme aired when the news is at its busiest and the number of listeners is at its peak. Today, the two presenter format has been abolished by BBC managers. Although no announcement has been made, the future for now will be breakfast with Eric Smith but without Clare Ashford as a co-presenter.

Ludlow Town Council set to increase the number of market stalls and pitches from 20 to 30 #recovery

Ludlow Town Council meets on Monday night to discuss, among other matters, expansion of the number of trading pitches on the market in the light of the government’s decision to reduce social distancing from two metres to one metre. Hopefully this, along with the reopening of pubs and cafes, will bring the town centre back into life – though we must all act with caution and safety and its will be a very long while before we witness the crushes of old on King Street and on the market. If the town council agree the plans on Monday, the new arrangements will be in place from Wednesday 8 July.

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