Peak tourist season begins – so let’s close Shropshire’s transport network down

What do you call it? A cacophony of road and rail closures? A collision? Or perhaps a conspiracy?

Get ready for closure of the A5 overnight for three weeks. The A49 will be shut at Onibury 24-hours a day for ten days. Drivers will be directed via Kidderminster and Bridgnorth. The main exit from Ludlow town centre will be blocked for three days, so HGVs and coaches will be sent over Dinham Bridge and Whitcliffe. South Shrewsbury is already often gridlocked as the “hamburger” – served without fries – is installed at Meole Brace and Reabrook roundabout is resurfaced. Arriva Wales is stopping trains between Shrewsbury and Crewe for five hours just because there is a football match on. That’s on top of two weekend line closures.

This is truly a “chaos” of closures.

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More Tory troubles at Shirehall as Councillor Robert Tindall resigns whip

Robert Tindall, recently re-elected councillor for Brown Clee, has today announced his resignation from the Conservative group on Shropshire Council.

I’m not surprised that Councillor Tindall has taken this action. He was one of at least three councillors from the south of the county that did not vote for the new leader of Shropshire Council, Peter Nutting. The makeup of the new cabinet has concentrated power further towards the north of the county.

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Tory tensions show at Shropshire Council as new leader and cabinet installed

We knew there had been some shenanigans within the Conservative group on Shropshire Council but we weren’t quite expecting members to be so obvious about their tensions in public.

At today’s meeting of the full council, Peter Nutting was voted in as leader. That was a foregone conclusion as he had been elected Conservative leader days before. But three or more members of the Conservative group sat on their hands and failed to vote for him. Later there was an extraordinary outburst from one Tory councillor who was outraged by the paucity of councillors from the south of the county in cabinet positions or chairing the key scrutiny committees.

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New leader says Shropshire Council is not poor and county needs an airport

Copthorne councillor Peter Nutting, elected as leader of Conservative group on Shropshire Council last night, spoke to BBC Radio Shropshire about his forthcoming role as leader of the council.

He talked about the council becoming a “doing council” and of investment in the business parks in market towns. He wants better quality jobs and sees opportunities arising from HS2 and building a Shropshire airport. In a reference to previous leaders, he said he was not panicked about money, declaring that “Shropshire is not a poor council.”

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Conservatives depose Pate and elect new leader for Shropshire Council

Just a week ago, Malcolm Pate, the leader of Shropshire Council until the 4 May elections, was confident of being re-elected as leader of the Conservative group on Shropshire Council. The Conservative leader is always voted in as leader of the council. Now, the Conservative group have ousted Pate and replaced him by Shrewsbury councillor, Peter Nutting.

Only a week ago, Malcolm Pate used an interview on BBC Radio Shropshire to boast of his confidence in seeing off any “superegos” that might challenge him. His task, he told the interviewers, was to get “the council out of the mire it was in when I took over 15 months ago.”  His belief that he had the backing of his Tory colleagues has proved to be wrong.

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