Day: 1 June 2016

Shropshire is falling behind on bringing empty homes into use, denying hundreds of people a decent home

Questions will be asked at a Shropshire Council meeting this Thursday to try to find to why this county has such a poor record on bringing empty homes back into use. If Shropshire Council had kept up with the national trend on reducing empty homes, we would have another 770 homes available in the county right now. If it had just kept up with reducing the number of homes that have been empty for more than six months, then we would have an extra 323 homes in occupation. Why is this? The main problem in this county has been a lack of investment. Shropshire Council is now investing less than ever and denying itself future income.

Two in five Ludlow people will be aged 65 or over by 2039. Are we glad to be grey?

The prospect of 40 new retirement apartments at Stone House has caused some consternation. Several people have commented that we should be concentrating on homes for young people, not increasing the retired population in the town. I have commented on this in a recent post. We know that Ludlow’s population is older than average but what are the trends? Over the last decade, Ludlow has become older at a slightly faster rate than Shropshire as a whole and at a much faster rate than all of England. New projections from the Office of National Statistics suggest that one-third of Shropshire residents will be aged 65 or over by 2039.[1] In some areas of Ludlow, more than a third of the population is already of this age. If current trends continue, 40% of Ludlow will be elderly by 2039. The big question is does this matter? Should our town and county grow old gracefully or should we develop policies to encourage younger people to live and work here?

Linney Hobbit House thrown out by planning inspector – the decision will help us protect our town against harmful development

Plans for a partly subterranean house near the castle mound on the Linney have been thrown out by the planning inspectorate. The plans for a so-called ‘Hobbit House’ were rejected by council planners last September. The decision to refuse this scheme is a textbook application of local planning rules. It will strengthen the case against other controversial developments at the bottom of the Linney and on Burway Lane. This is a good decision for Ludlow. We are already committed to hundreds of new homes in and around the town. There is no need for a single house in a location that would have damaged the setting of the castle and our historic centre.

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