Villagers support housing plans that could boost hopes of railway station

Villagers near Shrewsbury have thrown their support behind housing plans which will boost their chances of getting a railway station for the first time since the 1960s.

The former station, known as Station House, is now in private hands
The former station, known as Station House, is now in private hands

An application has been lodged for 48 homes to be built in Baschurch and includes a patch of land which the developer has vowed to designate for a future train station car park.

Hundreds of people attended a meeting at The Corbet School in July, calling for support to bring back a train station to the village. Residents were told that getting a dedicated car park would provide a crucial boost which could make all the difference.

Official plans were submitted by developer Shingler Homes on August 24, and since then residents have been mostly been adding their support. So far, 24 public comments have been made - 21 in favour and three objecting.

Baschurch Railway Station was closed several decades ago

Patrick Hey wrote: "It is important this planning application is approved. The people of Baschurch and the surrounding villages will benefit greatly from the construction of a railway station. As a student I would personally appreciate the building of a variety of dwellings, so that I may in future be able to purchase a property for myself in the area I was born.

"I am pleased that the developer, Shingler Homes, is willing to provide this opportunity for the good of the wider community. This needs to be taken into consideration when making a decision on this scheme, as if this land is lost then there is no viable alternative."

Phillip Hughes said: "Baschurch itself has grown substantially over the recent years and is continuing to do so. The reopening of the station will bring many benefits to the village itself but also the many people in the local area. For those travelling to work, for leisure for tourism the benefits will be huge.

"Currently the public transport in the rural areas of Shropshire is very poor, forcing more to have to drive. If the train service is integrated with other public transport this will be of great help to the elderly and those not able to afford private transport.

"It makes no sense whatsoever the train passing through Baschurch without stopping when this can greatly improve the lives of so many people living locally and further afield."

Baschurch Parish Council clerk Anne Howls said the authority "fully endorses the comments made and rationale provided in the planning statement attached to the planning application".

Objectors shared concerns over the proximity of the development to their homes as well as increased traffic on Station Road.

At the July meeting, North Shropshire MP Helen Morgan described it as a "now or never" opportunity to get a train station back in the village.

Councillor Dean Carroll, Shropshire Council's infrastructure lead, said the authority would be behind the proposals but, because the land is outside the local plan development boundary, residents would need to show their support to get it approved by the planning committee.

To view the application in full and comment, visit pa.shropshire.gov.uk/online-applications and enter reference 22/03752/FUL

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