Shropshire Star

Ludlow Town Council asks for extra 40p a week in council tax as inflation bites its budget

Residents living in an average Band D two-bedroom semi-detached home in Ludlow can expect to pay £218.92 this coming financial year for the council tax precept set by the Town Council.

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Ludlow town centre. Photo: Google.

This equates to an extra £20.79 during the year and a weekly increase of 40 pence.

However, added to this cost will be precepts to be set by Shropshire Council, West Mercia Police and Shropshire Fire and Rescue Service.

For the budget set last year, Ludlow Town Council's precept rose by £13.49 for the average Band D property.

Gina Wilding, clerk to Ludlow Town Council, said that the local authority delivered services which included Ludlow Market, Street, customer services information, cultural activities permits, Ludlow Museum at the Buttercross, Linney Riverside Park and Wheeler Road Recreation Area.

It is also responsible for children’s play areas, open spaces, Henley Road Cemetery, representations on local planning applications, seasonal and civic events, public conveniences, and grant funding.

Ms Wilding said that the council was committed to safeguarding local services, mindful of the detrimental impact of the financial crisis and to setting a sustainable budget.

She said: "Financial planning and budget setting are difficult in the current economic climate. Inflation is 10.5 per cent and energy prices have risen steeply.

"The running cost for the Guildhall and Buttercross have increased.

"The Town Council has decided that fees charged to use their local services will be kept as low as possible, and efficiency savings will be made wherever possible.

"Between 2022 to 23 and 2023 to 24, Ludlow’s Council’s Council Tax tax base decreased from 3,576.56 to 3,532.64.

"In financial terms, this is an immediate deficit of £8,707.00 in town council’s budget.

"Reasons for the decrease could be holiday home relief, single person discount, low income, or receipt of benefits reductions, and lack of new build housing to bring extra people into the town.

"It is unlikely that Ludlow’s council tax base will increase in future years because new house building now takes place in the neighbouring parish of Ludford.

"In real terms, this means that the council tax burden for the population of Ludlow will increase at a disproportionately higher rate than that of Ludford."