Call to demolish 'eyesore' Telford pub amid squatter fear
A former Telford pub is a dangerous eyesore and may be attracting squatters, a parish council has been told.
The Old Shawbirch, in Trench,called last orders more than two years ago and has been vandalised and burgled since closing.
Wrockwardine Wood and Trench Parish Council heard planning permission for four new homes on the site was granted in 2017, but work has not begun.
Councillor Charles Smith said that the building needs to be knocked down and Councillor David Wright – Telford and Wrekin’s portfolio holder for housing – promised to find out who owned the site so planning enforcement officers could pursue them.
Councillor Smith said: “It’s a real eyesore.
“Is it lived in? There are lights on at night and it’s becoming a dumping ground for building materials.”
Councillor Lynda Madeley said squatters and anti-social behaviour had been seen at the derelict building, on the corner of Trench Road and Furnace Lane.
Councillor Smith – who, as well as being a parish councillor, represents Wrockwardine Wood and Trench on Telford and Wrekin Council and chairs the borough’s planning committee – said: “Really we need to get some pressure put on planning officers for Telford and Wrekin Council to actually get on to the owners and get it tidied up.
“The building itself needs to be knocked down.
“I’m concerned that some young kids are going to get into there and there’s going to be an accident.”
Councillor Wright said he would find out who the current owner is.
Planning permission to demolish the existing pub and build four homes on the site was granted in November 2017.
The applicant in that case was Hadley-based Central UK Vehicle Leasing Ltd, and consent was granted on condition that work began within three years.
In a design statement accompanying that application, Andrew Lane of Priorslee-based ASG Architects Ltd wrote: “The existing pub has been closed for a time due to insufficient trade.
“The applicants have maintained the building, however it has been subject to various acts of vandalism and theft over recent time.”
Former MP Councillor Wright was elected to St George’s and Priorslee last year and won a seat on Telford and Wrekin Council in this year’s May 2 local elections. Shortly after he was appointed to the borough’s 10-member Labour cabinet.
Wrockwardine Wood and Trench Parish Council had three vacancies ahead of this week’s meeting. Councillor Wright was co-opted to fill one of those.