Controversial Shropshire developments remain unchanged in updated plan

Controversial proposals for a garden village in Bridgnorth and large-scale development in Shifnal will go ahead as previously outlined, according to Shropshire Council's new local plan.

An artist's impression of what Tasley Garden Village could look like
An artist's impression of what Tasley Garden Village could look like

The latest version of the document, published today, sees land in Tasley remaining the preferred option to deliver 1,050 homes and at least 16 hectares of employment land by 2038.

It also sees plans for the expansion of Shifnal, which include about 1,500 homes and 41 hectares of employment land, remain unchanged.

Proposals to release land from the green belt in both areas for business sites and potential development after 2038 is also set to be approved when the document goes before Shropshire Council's cabinet on December 7.

However, a revised submission by Bradford Estates for green belt land at junction three of the M54 near Tong failed to win over planning officers, who have maintained their stance that the area is unsuitable for an employment site.

Local plan's main developments

The plan includes development in:

  • Albrighton, where 500 dwellings and five hectares of employment land could be built

  • Bishop's Castle, where 150 dwellings and three hectares of employment land could be built

  • Bridgnorth, where 1,800 dwellings and 49 hectares of employment land could be built

  • Broseley, where 250 dwellings and a three-hectare business site could be built

  • Church Stretton, where 200 dwellings and two hectares of employment land were set to be built before 70 homes at Snatchfields Farm were withdrawn

  • Cleobury Mortimer, where 200 dwellings and two hectares of business land could be built

  • Craven Arms, where 500 dwellings and 15 hectares of employment land could be built

  • Ellesmere, where 800 dwellings and nine hectares of employment land could be built

  • Highley, where 250 dwellings and three hectares of employment land could be built

  • Ludlow, where 1,000 dwellings and 11 hectares of employment land could be built

  • Market Drayton, where 1,200 dwellings and 35 hectares of employment land could be built

  • Minsterley and Pontesbury, where 155 and 175 dwellings could be built respectively

  • Much Wenlock, where 200 dwellings and two hectares of employment land could be built

  • Oswestry, where 1,900 dwellings and 57 hectares of employment land were set to be built before 30 dwellings on land at Trefonen Road were withdrawn

  • Shifnal, where 1,500 dwellings and 41 hectares of employment land could be built

  • Shrewsbury, where 8,625 dwellings and 100 hectares of employment land were set to be built before nine hectares of employment land near Battlefield Roundabout were withdrawn

  • Wem, where 600 dwellings and six hectares of business land could be built

  • Whitchurch, where 1,600 dwellings and 20 hectares of business land could be built

  • Clive Barracks, Tern Hill, where 750 dwellings and six hectares of employment land could be built.

  • Former Ironbridge Power Station, where 1,000 dwellings and six hectares of employment land could be built

  • RAF Cosford, which is set to expand with Ministry of Defence facilities and a Midlands Air Ambulance HQ being built on 221 hectares of surrounding land

Eddie West, principal planning policy officer, said the two Bridgnorth garden village proposals had been "reassessed based on more up to date information" but the same conclusion had been reached in favour of Tasley over a rival site in Stanmore.

Mr West said: "There's been a lot of views locally on this but ultimately we've reassessed it based on more up to date information.

"Ultimately, having been through that reappraisal process, we're not proposing to make any changes to our plans in Bridgnorth.

"Affectively, the site allocation proposal in Bridgnorth remains the same in the most up to date version of the local plan and we'll be seeking cabinet approval with that."

Duty

Mr West added that Bradford Estates, which had previously spearheaded plans for 3,000 homes, employment land, schools and open space near Tong, had come forward with scaled-down proposals for employment land only.

Mr West said: “We have reappraised that and continue to think there are insufficient reasons we would release that land from the green belt.”

The council is now also proposing to accept 30 hectares of employment land need from the Association of Black Country Authorities (ABCA), having already agreed to take on 1,500 houses to help ABCA achieve its housing targets.

Mr West said this was partly down to the council’s legal ‘duty to cooperate’ with neighbouring authorities, as well as the fact Shropshire had already set targets for housing and employment which were above the minimum required.

The news comes as controversial sites earmarked for development have been dropped from Shropshire Council’s new local plan.

The latest version of the plan, published today, sees land at Snatchfield Farm in Church Stretton and off Trefonen Road in Oswestry, removed from the list of potential housing sites.

Meanwhile a proposed site for 60 homes off Weston Rhyn’s High Street has been withdrawn in favour of an alternative site for the same number of properties off Trehowell Lane.

Land allocated for business growth near Battlefield Roundabout on the A5 to the north of Shrewsbury has also be dropped from the plan.

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