Author: andybodders

Elections 2021: Ludlow Town Council nominations announced – I am disappointed by the lack of new faces

I confess I am disappointed. There are fifteen seats on Ludlow Town Council. But there are only two candidates for the 6 May election who don’t already sit on the council. One is me and I am elected unopposed to Gallows Bank Ward, the area I live in. That makes sense to me as I deal with a lot of local issues already. Another new face is Alan Tapley, who will standing in Bringewood Ward. This will be the only contested election on 6 May. Everyone else is elected unopposed. No one is standing for Clee View Ward. Those two seats will be co-opted, as will a vacant seat on Hayton Ward unless the town council decides to hold by-elections. All councils need new faces and new ideas. Councils and councillors need to face a degree of challenge. Challenge focuses the mind and drives innovation rather than the same old thing drifting on. I am disappointed that more people have not put their name forward.

Elections 2021: Shropshire Council unitary candidates announced including Ludlow

Local elections will take place on 6 May, now just under four weeks away. Today, Shropshire Council has published the list of candidates for the 74 unitary seats up for grabs. Three candidates will compete in Ludlow South and Clee. There will be four candidates in Ludlow North and Ludlow East. The Lib Dems, Green Party and Conservatives are standing for all four local seats. Labour is fielding a candidate in Ludlow East and an independent is standing in Ludlow North.

Recycling rates have stagnated – here are five steps to recycling heaven in Shropshire

Shropshire Council is in the top fifty councils in England for recycling rates. It recycled 54.6 per cent of its waste in 2019/20 but that rate has not improved over the last five years. Though it’s good news we are among the high recyclers, there is never room for complacency when it comes to environmental matters. The council has become complacent. South Oxfordshire and the Vale of White Horse districts, both rural areas, recycle 63 to 64 per cent of their waste. Why can’t we do the same? Or better still, do better. The way recycling operates in Shropshire can and must be improved. Shropshire Council should set a target of being in the top ten of councils for recycling by 2026. We should aim for a minimum of two-thirds of our waste being recycled within five years.

Expanding Ludlow business could move operation to Wales after lack of council help

One of Ludlow’s most significant employers, Flowfit, is on the verge of signing a deal for expanding its business in Wales. This move comes after Shropshire Council has failed to help the company find a site in Ludlow. Simon Parsonage is Chief Executive of Flowfit, a market leader in everything hydraulic, from distribution to systems and manufacturing has been based on Ludlow Business Park and celebrates 25 years in business in June. At the beginning of the year, Simon contacted Shropshire Council’s Business Growth team. Flowfit has been expanding and wanted to expand further on an adjacent vacant site owned by Shropshire Council or a site close by. Although there were promises to help from council officers, after more than three months Flowfit has not received a valid response. It is now at the point of signing up to expanding on a site in Wales.

We can’t solve climate change and biodiversity loss without solving planning – a view from the grass roots

I am writing from the heart following a battering few years trying to protect biodiversity landscapes from new developments and to get sustainable transport written into housing and supermarket schemes. On biodiversity, all we have got from developments in my expanding rural town is tokenism. Replacement trees within manicured landscapes. Not the untidy scrubby bits of landscape that are or will become biodiversity rich. On sustainable transport, the car remains king. There are no plans for bus routes to serve four major housing developments. The out of town supermarket, with the backing of councillors and planners, doesn’t even have a bus stop. The planning system is working against our national and international ambitions to enrich biodiversity and tackle the climate emergency.

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