Ludlow land saved from bungalow development
A plot of land in Ludlow which has been at the heart of the community for more than 20 years has been saved from development.
Shropshire Housing Group had applied to Shropshire Council for permission to build a group of social housing bungalows on land at Sidney Road in Ludlow.
But at a meeting of the South Planning Committee, councillors voted against the application.
In refusing the application, they said that the development, which would have comprised of five, one bedroom assisted living bungalows which would have been suitable for the elderly and frail, would lead to a loss of amenity space.
They also heard that to make way for the homes a large tree, which is subject to a tree preservation order, would be felled. They said this was unnecessary and gave it as a further reason for the plans to be refused.
The site is popular with families and teenagers and has a well-used footpath.
Objectors to the scheme included Ludlow Town Council and numerous locals.
A petition against the development had attracted more than 70 signatures and 25 comments had been lodged on Shropshire Council's planning portal.
Councillor Tracey Huffer, who represents Ludlow East, said: "I am very uncomfortable with the scheme but I can see the need for social housing. I do not like the loss of group space but my main issues are with the footpath. We get a lot of people using it as a shortcut. Nothing has been done to address the situation. However, the loss of group space has a huge impact."
Councillor Vivienne Parry, who represents Ludlow South added that the space had been used by the public for more than 20 years. "This has always been a public space."
She added that the area was prone to flooding and that bungalows at the rear of the proposed site were damp.
Councillors also raised concerns over parking and the fact that the bungalows would be one bedroom, but as they were for the elderly and frail, they would need space for carers, which would not be available.
Councillor Cecilia Motley, who represents Corvedale said she felt the scheme had not been thought through properly in regards to the design of the bungalows. She said: "If there is rising damp in the houses at the back, who is to say it's not going to affect these houses? That does not seem very bright to me."
Councillors voted to refuse the planning application.
A spokesman for Shropshire Housing Group said: "It was in a site which was suitable for development and within easy reach of the town centre. The scheme retained an area of open space."