Plans for permanent traveller site in north Shropshire

Plans have been filed for a caravan site for five traveller families near Market Drayton.

The proposal would see space for 10 caravans, five amenity buildings and access improvements installed on grassland on the north side of the A53, between the roundabouts at Drayton Meadows and the Gingerbread Man pub.

A statement from planning agent Philip Brown Associates said: "Each family pitch would accommodate two caravans, of which no more than one would be a static caravan/mobile home. The site access is located at the eastern end of the site.

"The proposed caravan site is located on the edge of Market Drayton, with ready access to the town's wide range of community services and facilities.

The traveller site would be on the north-west side of the A53. Photo: Google Maps

"The access is located at the end of a lay-by on the A53 and, on the outside of a bend in the A53. As a result, the site access has excellent visibility in both directions along the bypass.

"Traveller sites have a number of characteristic features which, depending on the particular setting, can be atypical in the countryside such as caravans, hardstandings, utility buildings and residential paraphernalia.

"As a result, some degree of visual impact must be accepted and if an adequate supply of gypsy sites is to be provided, some degree of visual harm must be acceptable."


The proposals have attracted more than a dozen public comments, some in support and some in opposition.

Mr Dereck Chidlow wrote: "I see this proposed development as a positive for the community and the town."

Mrs Trina Whittaker said: "Fully supportive of this application, there is no reason why this application should not be approved when David Wilson have built over 100 houses opposite [at Drayton Meadows] and another 250 dwellings have been granted approval.

"It is a positive for the town and as a local to this proposed site I'm welcoming of this community."

Miss K Prince wrote in support, saying: "The entrance is near a roundabout, so vehicles should not be going at an excessive speed past this site, and at a speed suitable to notice people emerging from site safely.

"There is also a pedestrian crossing the other side of the roundabout, which will enable the residents to cross the road safely, within a short distance of the site. I have previously broken down in this lay-by, and used the pedestrian crossing myself, it is accessible within minutes."

But Mr Ian Johnston said: "The entrance from the lay-by has poor visibility regardless of what the application states. Should lorries, or any vehicles, be parked there it is almost impossible to see vehicles coming from the right hand side (coming out of proposed site).

"It is a 60mph road and even with the new roundabout many vehicles are already travelling at a fair speed by the time they reach the end of the lay-by. This is not a safe exit and entrance.

"[Policy] states that a site should be 'away from' existing settlements. Although it is across the road from a new housing estate and an established one, it remains close to them – approximately 200 metres from the established settlement and 100 metres from the new housing estate.

"Land across from the proposed site has planning permission for 250 homes. Surely this renders the proposed site not 'away from' settlements."

Mr Andrew Petrie wrote: "I have genuine concerns over the proposed site having a detrimental effect on devaluing house prices in the area."

The proposal is being considered by Shropshire Council.

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