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15ft wall collapses at Shropshire housing development

By Jonny Drury | Ellesmere | Property | Published:

A large wall on the edge of a housing development in Shropshire has collapsed, prompting health and safety concerns from people living nearby.

The wall that collapsed

Currently, a housing development for 12 large homes is being built in Birch Road, Ellesmere. Building work has begun, but earlier this week residents were shocked to see that a 15ft wall directly under one of the houses had collapsed, with piles of sand from behind the wall also collapsing.

Michael Bambridge, who lives nearby, questioned how this could happen and said a serious accident could have been caused.

He said: “There was a lot of unrest about the development of these large houses in the first place.

“Work began two months ago, and now finally they have started building, then we see that this has happened.

“It is near the entrance and a retaining wall has completely collapsed down the middle.

“How on earth can something like this happen? Surely plans for this were submitted to the council and the work inspected. What about simply health and safety?” Scaffolding has been erected near to where the collapse took place, with the wall underneath a house build. Mr Bambridge is concerned that an accident could have happened, and is wary of something else happening at the site. He said: “This is under the building of the house, with that on sand surely that isn’t safe either, and we don’t want another situation like this.

“I wonder if the health and safety inspectorate have had anything to say on the matter.

“The earth is obviously unstable, we just want to know how safe it is. Residents nearby weren’t really keen on the idea in the first place.”

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No one at Fletcher Homes was available for comment.

Residents have been against a number of housing developments in Ellesmere in recent years.

Only last month a lengthy planning row came to an end after councillors and residents fought plans for 68 homes.

They were celebrating after their three-year fight for the development on Teal Drive to be thrown out was successful.

Government planning inspector David Cullingford dismissed the plans to build the homes after the scheme went to an appeal, after a lengthy process with discussions in the high court by numerousThe planning row has been a lengthy process which has been discussed in the High Court and by numerous planning inspectors. The plans were first turned down by Shropshire Council in 2015 – but the decision was overturned by an inspector after the applicant appealed the decision over claims the council did not yet have a five-year housing supply.

The local authority then appealed against the Government, taking the battle to the High Court where Mrs Justice Lang confirmed that the planning inspector’s ruling was unlawful.

Jonny Drury

By Jonny Drury
@JonnyDrury_Star

Senior reporter covering Oswestry and Mid Wales.

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