New sites needed to help meet Shropshire town’s development targets

New development sites need to be identified to help Cleobury Mortimer meet its housing targets, the town council has said.

The steering group preparing the Cleobury Mortimer Neighbourhood Development Plan (NDP) has put out a fresh call for landowners to come forward after concerns were raised over whether the two sites earmarked in the first draft of the plan were deliverable.

When adopted, the NDP will set out where around 130 homes and business sites will be built in the town in the period up to 2038.

Following a previous consultation with landowners, two sites – one on Ludlow Road and one on Tenbury Road – were chosen by the steering group for inclusion in the plan, a draft of which was published last summer.

But the town council has now suspended the process and opened a new ‘call for sites’ consultation.

A statement from the council said members were “concerned about the possible withdrawal of one site”, and “the traffic impact of other”.

The two sites are owned by the same landowner.

The council said: “Ideally, we are seeking land of at least 6.5 hectares plus additional provision of open spaces and wildlife improvements.

“The town will also need additional land for cemetery space to ensure we have sufficient capacity for the next 100 years.

“This is a very important initiative for our community and we are looking for willing landowners to come forward with proposals for land that they think will be suitable to ensure a good outcome for our community in coming decades.”

Development sites for most towns are set out in Shropshire Council’s new local plan, which is expected to be adopted next year.

The local plan says 200 houses should be built in Cleobury Mortimer between 2016 and 2038, but does not allocate any new sites.

Instead it says new housing will be delivered on land earmarked under the current development plan, “and any residential development allocated within the Cleobury Mortimer Neighbourhood Plan”.

Taking into account housing already built and permitted since 2016, an additional 138 homes are needed during the plan period.

The town council’s statement added: “The town council want to ensure that the best sites come forward and have opted to allocate the land in the NDP rather than leave the job to Shropshire Council.”

The ‘call for sites’ consultation is open until Friday September 17, 2021.

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