Mixed reaction from campaigners over Shropshire Council's new local plan

Shropshire Council's newest version of its local plan has been met with mixed reviews from campaigners across the county.

An artist's impression of what the development in Tong could have looked like, which has been withdrawn from Shropshire Council's plans
An artist's impression of what the development in Tong could have looked like, which has been withdrawn from Shropshire Council's plans

The 'regulation 19' pre-submission draft of the document was published yesterday and sets out where housing and business land can be built until 2038.

Land allocated for business growth north of Shrewsbury has also been dropped, and a proposed site in Weston Rhyn has been withdrawn in favour of a similar development elsewhere in the village.

An artist's impression of what the garden village in Bridgnorth could look like, which remains unchanged in the new plan

The alterations to parts of the county, and lack of change elsewhere, have been met with mixed reviews from various organisations throughout Shropshire.

The Save Snatchfield Group, created to prevent building on farmland in Church Stretton, had been urging Shropshire Council to consider an alternative development.

Initially, the ancient meadow had been earmarked for a 12-acre site of 70 homes.

Graham Lewis, from the group, said: "We're delighted the plans for Snatchfield are seemingly off the table.

"We need time to see the exact details as we had been putting forward issues to do with the whole of Church Stretton and the problems with building in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

An artist's impression of what the garden village in Bridgnorth could look like, which remains unchanged in the new plan

"I hope they've listened to our advice and they've come up with the right policy moving forward.

"We've never been against housing in Church Stretton, we just need the council to understand the need of the town, as what it outlined before was simply the need for the whole of Shropshire.

"We've worked tirelessly to not just protect Snatchfield, but to get the council to see there's a better way to provide the housing need in Church Stretton."

Meanwhile, plans remain in Shifnal to build 1,500 homes and a business site of at least 41 hectares.

Shifnal Matters has been campaigning against the plans

But in the neighbouring village of Tong, planning officers have stood strong with their decision to not include scaled-back proposals from Bradford Estates to create an employment site on green belt land near Junction 3 (J3) of the M54.

Shifnal Matters, which had been campaigning over development in both areas, said there was "no justifiable reason" for building in Tong.

Zoe Turner, committee member of the group, said: "Shifnal Matters warmly welcomes the news that the J3, Tong development is not to go ahead.

"There is no justifiable reason for that area to be removed from the green belt.

"However the fact that there may be no change in the plans for Shifnal is disappointing."

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