Bridgnorth country park homes plans are dropped from 'garden settlement' scheme
A consortium behind plans to build a new 'garden settlement' in Bridgnorth has ditched proposals to build on the town's popular Stanmore Country Park.
The Stanmore Consortium, made up of Apley Estates, Stanmore Properties and other local landowners, said it has dropped plans to build over the green belt land of Stanmore Country Park, and will instead work with the park's Friends Group to improve and develop the setting, with the new housing being built nearby.
Developers said the decision to drop the proposals will be apparent in the 'master plan', set to be released on Wednesday, ahead of the first of three consultation events – independent from Shropshire Council's Local Plan Review consultation.
The proposals for Stanmore include 850 homes to be built up until 2036, as well as a large section of employment land.
A large section of green belt surrounding the site is also being set aside for a further 650 homes after 2036.
The consortium has also stated 2,000 jobs will be created, and confirmed they will be delivered up to and after 2036.
Graeme Manton, of Apley Estates, said: "We have now realised the country park is really an important local asset and people are really keen on it being retained, so we've particularly focused our master plan on designing something that allows us to enhance the country park rather than build on it.
"Shropshire has a housing target it has to meet. There is going to be some development in Bridgnorth – it's definitely going to happen.
"But if the development is going to happen on land that belongs to Apley Estates, it's got to be the right sort of development."
The consortium is now urging residents to attend the consultation events, and said a document outlining community engagement would be submitted along with future planning applications.
Matthew Sutton, of Camargue, the PR agency promoting the scheme, said: "This is a robust consultation exercise and all of the feedback we receive will be closely analysed and looked at by the consortium and ultimately, although there's no planning application currently being prepared, if one did come forward in time there would be very clear statements of community engagement which sets out all the feedback they receive and it's something a consortium has to put forward."
Mr Manton added: "This is a genuine opportunity to try and put these events on and talk to people about the emerging proposals, see what they think and ask any questions."
Three consultation events on the proposals are planned, starting with one from 12.30pm to 7pm on Wednesday, September 25, at the Marches Centre for Manufacturing & Technology on Stanmore Industrial Estate.
It will be followed by the second on Thursday, September 26, between 2pm and 8pm at Castle Hall, Bridgnorth, with the final one taking place between 10am and 4pm on Saturday, September 28, at Low Town Community Hall in the town.