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Shropshire Council votes to scrap Shirehall refurbishment and 'condemn it to history'

By Nick Humphreys | Shrewsbury | News | Published:

Shropshire councillors have voted to stop refurbishment works at the authority's Shirehall headquarters and "condemn it to history".

The Shirehall in Shrewsbury

Work had started to make the building more eco-friendly, including installing solar panels. But since a large number of its office-based workforce have been operating from home during the Covid-19 pandemic, a proposal was brought forward to get rid of the site in favour of a "slimmed down" civic centre in Shrewsbury.

Of the councillors in attendance at the virtual full council meeting, 44 voted in favour of stopping the works.

Council leader Peter Nutting described the building as "a big, ugly lump of concrete", and said it was time to move on.

Covid-19 coverage:

He added: "It's a cold building. I'm pleased that everyone seems to be up with the idea. Doing this will be good for Shrewsbury and Shropshire."

Councillor Nutting also said that there are a number of options for a potential new site in the town and didn't think the council should "corner itself too quickly" by earmarking one.

Councillors were all in agreement to move from Shirehall, but some raised concerns including what would happen to the Abbey Foregate site and that welfare of workers should be taken into consideration.

Julian Dean asked that the council consider subsidising workers who have to pay extra in bills due to being at home, and Hannah Fraser suggested that remote working and building at Shirehall might mean the council might not be doing the environment as much good as it thinks.

Nick Humphreys

By Nick Humphreys
Senior Reporter

Senior reporter for the Shropshire Star focusing on Shrewsbury.

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