Tag: economy

Grants for the self-employed available from this morning #coronavirus

The economy of Ludlow and Shropshire is dominated by small businesses. Many people work in micro-businesses, those with less than ten employees. At the last count, there were 14,355 micro-businesses in our council area. That’s 91% of all our enterprises in Shropshire. Many working in these businesses are self-employed. They were initially ignored by the government but a £9bn support scheme is now in place. It has strict rules and will not help those businesses that did not submit a tax return in 2018-19 because they had just been established. I have received a lot of desperate pleas from local micro businesses. I hope this scheme will help. Let me know how it works out.

Shropshire Council is consulting on local economic plans – this makes little sense during the #coronavirus emergency

Shropshire Council has been preparing a Ludlow Local Economic Strategy and it is now out for consultation. It doesn’t really work as a strategy. For example, it identifies the lack of affordable housing as a major issue for Ludlow but affordable housing doesn’t get mentioned in the annexed action plans. How can we promote our local economy when we don’t have enough affordable places for workers to live? This consultation is taking place during an unprecedented international health crisis and a very uncertain economic future. Maybe there will be business as usual after Covid-19 but that is not looking very likely any time soon. We should be talking about economic recovery and what sort of local stimulus will be needed. I feel that this consultation is a distraction from the important business of the day.

We need a new market towns initiative across Shropshire to promote our rural economy – we are proposing a new fund on Thursday

It is time we had capital funding to improve our smaller market towns, not just in Shrewsbury and Oswestry. I have put forward a motion for next Thursday’s Shropshire Council meeting aiming to establish a capital fund for investment in the smaller market towns including Ludlow. We must keep our smaller town centres alive. That will benefit residents and visitors. It will also ensure that Shropshire Council maintains its income from council tax and business rates.

Islabikes to move from Bromfield to Ludford to accommodate growth

Islabikes is a growing company based on the Ludlow Food Centre site in Bromfield. It wants to expand and is apply for a permission for works to adapt a unit on Lower Barns Business Park south of Ludford village. These low-key works involve new windows and a glass door to Unit 10, a new porous-surfaced car park, a bike shed and a children’s bike test track. This looks a very good application from a significant Ludlow employer.

Oswestry and Shrewsbury get most of Shropshire Council’s investment cash – Ludlow gets a few crumbs

Numbers dug out by a Bridgnorth resident reveal that the north of the county gets the lion’s share of Shropshire Council’s capital investment. The spend per head in Shrewsbury, Oswestry and Market Drayton is ten times as high as in Ludlow. We get barely more than a quarter of the money that goes to Bridgnorth. Ludlow has gained just 1% of the capital spend across the county. This is not for want of trying. In May, us unitary councillors submitted a proposal for investment in Ludlow to Shropshire Council leader Peter Nutting. Three months later he has still not found time to come to our town to discuss it.

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