Revised proposals for signage and lighting at the Wheatsheaf are a great improvement

Last July, Marstons submitted a planning application to spruce up the outside of the Wheatsheaf on Lower Broad Street. At the time, I said the plans “do not suit historic Ludlow and will damage the historic character of Lower Broad Street.” New plans have now been submitted. They remove a large sign one the west wall by the Broadgate. Plans to replace the pub name panel on the front of the pub have also been dropped. These plans are a great improvement and I think they are now fit for approval (17/03335/ADV).

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Should we have an A&E unit in Shrewsbury or Telford or in both towns? Vote now…

If there must be just one A&E for Telford and Wrekin, Shropshire and mid-Wales, where should it be located? At the Princes Royal Hospital (PRH) in Telford or the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital (RSH)?

This will be the main question asked in the Future Fit consultation on the future of Shropshire health services. We are expecting that to be launched in the next few weeks. There is a third option, that we keep both A&Es, though that will not an option health bosses will put forward in the forthcoming consultation.

Let us know your views by voting below.

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Shropshire Council is planning to raid the tills of Ludlow charities with business rate hikes – it’s an immoral tax on volunteers

We have more from the Directorate of Very Bad News at Shropshire Council. The council is planning to cancel all discretionary business rate relief for charities, sports clubs, youth clubs and a lot of other social enterprises across the county. In Ludlow, and voluntary and social enterprises could face an annual bill of more than £20,000 from next April.

This is nothing other than a tax on our volunteer community. It is a disgusting raid on the funding of good causes.

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Shropshire Council has one of the highest gender pay gaps of all councils – it must stop making excuses and tackle the problem

At 2pm on Maundy Thursday afternoon, just as everyone was slipping away for the Easter break, Shropshire Council issued a press release detailing how much men and women are paid by the council. I have taken a reality check on this. Its positive tone belies the reality that Shropshire Council is bumping along the bottom on closing the gender pay gap. Only 12 councils in England pay women less than Shropshire Council.

Maundy Thursday was a good time to bury bad news and there was certainly bad news to bury. What the council was anxious to slip out before the Easter break was that it is one of the worst performers on equal pay in the England. Only 12 of more than 300 councils in England have a larger gender pay gap than Shropshire Council.

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Hike in car parking charges for Ludlow confirmed as scrutiny at Shropshire Council fails

I felt physically ill when I sat down at Shropshire Council’s Performance Management Scrutiny Committee last Wednesday. We were there to yet again to argue against a damaging rise in parking charges in Ludlow from next September. It was the second time the matter had come to scrutiny. The last meeting looked like a stitch up. I knew the moment that I walked in at this meeting we were due a repeat. And it proved to be so. We are get charges until 8pm on the streets in the town centre and they will be set at £1.80 an hour, the highest outside Shrewsbury. There is no justification for this.

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