Frontline Events Ltd has withdrawn its application for a change of use of land at Rock Hill Farm, Greete, south west of Ludlow (22/03770/FUL). The application has been controversial with more than 70 local people objecting on the grounds that this quiet, rural location is not suitable for war gaming events and the level of traffic the events would generate.
Richard Huffer is Shropshire councillor for Clee division, which includes Greete parish. He said last week:
“Greete is down narrow, twisting backroads while are often a single carriageway width. It is totally unacceptable place for events that will generate a lot of traffic.
“Local people are really worried about how the character of this rural area is being changed from quiet rolling hills dedicated for farming to solar farms and now this application for war gaming.
“Thankfully, this application has been withdrawn. I hope it would never have been approved.
“There were a lot of comments supporting the proposal but most seem to be made by people that seem have no knowledge of the area. These comments have clearly been prompted by the applicant. They have a common theme. That it is quiet sport that leaves no damage. That dressing up as Nazis is just playing.
“Fantasising is not a planning consideration as planning is not about morals, but do we really want to have people playing Nazis and bearing swastikas in rural Shropshire? Do we really want people play acting and having fun in denial of the horrors of the second world war?
“We live dangerous times with the war in Ukraine and China’s threats to Taiwan, and growing threats of use of nuclear weapons. This is not a time to play at war when so many people’s lives are threatened, are forced into fighting and are dying. War is never a game.
“We can expect a lot more applications for diversification of farm use. Family farms are under threat of extinction in rural Shropshire as their costs soar and they don’t receive high enough farm gate prices to balance the books. They want to take on new activities and diversify to keep their heads above the water.