Special meeting to decide fate of Ironbridge Power Station plans

An extraordinary meeting will decide the fate of plans to redevelop the former Ironbridge Power Station site.

A special meeting will take place to discuss amendments to the plans for the former power station site.
A special meeting will take place to discuss amendments to the plans for the former power station site.

Harworth, the firm behind the plans has submitted an 'amended proposal' for the site, seeking to address the reasons which saw it rejected in a shock refusal last month.

Details of the amendments have not yet been confirmed, but the refusal was based on concerns over the level of affordable housing included in the proposal, worries about the amount of funding to address impacts on local roads, and the lack of a firm agreement on plans for a GP surgery on the site.

Harworth, which bought the site for £6.4m, wants to build up to 1,000 homes on the land, along with a retirement village, primary school, shops, a rail link, business, sports and leisure sites.

The shock refusal at the August 10 meeting of Shropshire Council's South Planning Committee, led to speculation that Harworth may seek to challenge the decision on a planning appeal.

However, it now seems that the company has come back with fresh changes, which councillors will be asked to consider at the special meeting on September 20.

They will first be given a verbal update on the situation at the September 7 meeting of the South Planning Committee.

It has also emerged that the amendments can only be considered because the formal refusal notice has not been issued.

The notice was delayed after Harworth lodged a challenge to the decision on procedural grounds.

Shropshire Council said that challenge had been dismissed but the firm had then submitted the amended proposal.

A spokesman said the amendments are "considered to be material to the committee’s resolution to refuse the application".

The spokesman said: "The September 7 committee will be a verbal update for members on new developments since the application was considered on August 10.

"An application would not normally be reported back to committee after a resolution has been made, but there have been material changes which the committee should be aware of before a decision is issued.

"A refusal notice could not be issued immediately after the August 10 committee as the applicant Harworth initially lodged a challenge regarding a procedural matter which necessitated the council obtaining legal advice.

"After this advice confirmed that a decision could be issued, Harworth then submitted an amended proposal seeking to address the refusal reason. The amendments are considered to be material to the committee’s resolution to refuse the application.

"As such, it is appropriate to report the application back to the committee before issuing a decision.

"The full details of the amended proposals are scheduled to be considered by Shropshire Council’s southern area planning committee at an extraordinary meeting on September 20."

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