Developers ask MP to discuss Tong M54 homes plans concerns

Developers behind controversial plans to build thousands of homes on land off the M54 near Tong have invited Wrekin MP Mark Pritchard to discuss the proposals after he labelled them 'vague' and 'not credible'.

Mark Pritchard
Mark Pritchard

In a letter sent to residents in Shifnal and the surrounding area, Mr Pritchard said the site 'is completely inappropriate for housing' and criticised claims made by Bradford Estates that new schools and a GP surgery could be provided.

The letter, which constituents received over the last week, centred on Shropshire Council's Strategic Sites Consultation, in which land off junction three of the M54 is subject to 3,000 homes and 50 hectares of employment land.

Responding to the criticism, Bradford Estates, which published its emerging master plan for the site that included two new primary schools, a secondary school and a new GP surgery, said it would welcome a meeting with the Tory MP.

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A spokesman from Bradford Estates, said: "Bradford Estates has made strenuous efforts to discuss its emerging proposals with local elected representatives.

"This has enabled the estate to update, modify and inform points that have been circulating and appear to have given concern to Mr Pritchard.

"The estate would welcome the opportunity to discuss Mr Pritchard's concerns about those proposals he feels are 'vague' or 'do not seem credible'."

Because the development would be built on green belt land, Shropshire Council would have to argue "exceptional circumstances" to be allowed to approve the scheme.

When the council agreed to proceed with consulting on the plans it emerged that part of the reasoning behind the proposal was to help the Black Country Authorities meet a shortfall of space for housing and employment land.

Mr Pritchard's letter highlighted that 'Shropshire Council has already met its own housing targets' and praised Telford & Wrekin Council for questioning the Black Country authorities' claim that they need to build up to 22,000 houses in Shropshire to meet their own housing quota.

The proposals have already been met with strong opposition from residents of Tong and nearby Shifnal, which is also the focus of separate large scale development plans.

The brochure from the Bradford Estates makes its case for the development by suggesting the location of the land makes it ideal for supporting Shropshire Council's economic plans for the county.

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