Tag: local plan review

Ludlow is running out of spaces for business – urgent action is needed

I have already written on the problems that engineering company Flowfit has had finding premises for expansion. It had hoped to move to the biodigester site but in recent weeks, Shropshire Council has ruled that out. The ground breaking biodigester closed in 2012 and has only had sporadic use since. Shropshire Council now says it will not decide on the biodigester’s future until the end of 2023, more than a decade after the facility stopped processing food waste. At least one other light engineering company was eyeing up the site. But it has now been sterilised for two and a half years. Council officers have told companies that employment land is in demand in South Shropshire. I am now asking for urgent action on providing employment land in Ludlow.

Dark day for Shropshire as local plan narrowly voted through in council meeting shambles

The Greens were in the gods, the sound system was in the pits and the Speaker was stage left. As for Robert Tindall, he exited Theatre Severn stage right in Shakespearean style. Robert, Tory councillor for Cleobury North, was dismissed from the Southern Planning Committee in a callous act by the council leader just because he voted for what his constituents believed in. It was a dark day for Shropshire. The wrong plan for our county. And the wrong approach to democracy for our modern age. It confirmed that planning in Shropshire under the current Tory regime is about politics, not policies.

We need to protect views of historic Ludlow and landscapes across our county in the next local plan

Shropshire Council is currently discussing its approach to planning through to 2038. The latest consultation closed at the end of September. One of the arguments I have made is that we must protect the most important views across the county from being disrupted or destroyed by sprawl of housing and employment development. I am proposing that the revised local plan designates and protects key views of historic monuments and important landscapes across the county.

It is time to plan for expansion of Ludlow to 2038 and beyond – we need a garden suburb

Shropshire Council is concluding its consultation on how the county will development from now until 2038. For Ludlow nothing changes from the existing plans. I think this is a mistake. My long held view is that we should plan for a flourishing garden suburb east of the A49. That hasn’t been a popular view but if we had put in place a masterplan for that area in 2012, we would not have had housing developments imposed on us at Foldgate Lane and off Bromfield Road by planning inspectors. No future development is not an option available to us. We can either plan for a sustainable development east of the bypass or just leave Ludlow’s future to the whims of planners and inspectors as they make day by day decisions based on a planning rulebook that seems to have little relevance to Ludlow.

We must build an 1,800-home Ludford Garden Suburb by 2065 to ensure that Ludlow thrives

We can just bury our heads in the sand and hope housing development doesn’t happen. But we can no more hold back housing than you can stop the tide. Ludlow will expand. Half the town hates that. The other half thinks it is essential. Shropshire Council’s local plan has ambitious growth targets for the county but these pose dangers for a town like Ludlow which has seen decades of unplanned, incoherent growth. We need to bring an end to “Beetle Drive” planning in Ludlow. We can’t continue adding one limb at time. We must begin planning for a Ludford Garden Suburb and ensure that we leave a legacy that generations can be proud of. It might take fifty years to build. But that’s okay in the landscape of planning. Especially if it’s a well-designed landscape.

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