Garden Village around Tong
This remains potentially a very big issue. The Bradford Estate (managing director, Viscount Newport) originally proposed building so called Garden Villages, to the tune of 10,000 houses, over a number of years in the middle of the Green Belt near Tong and Junction 3 of the M54. The latest proposal is for 2,500 houses and about 37 Ha of employment land but this has not been included by Shropshire Council in the Draft Plan that is shortly to be examined. We have been supporting the local Tong Action Group in their campaign.
Save Mortimer Forest
Forest Holidays, a company 15% owned by the Forestry Commission, planned to build 68 large-scale holiday houses with an on-site shop, take-away food facilities, a restaurant, bar and cycle hire facility, near the peaceful beauty spot of High Vinnalls in Herefordshire, near the historic town of Ludlow and just 400 metres from the boundary with Shropshire.
Forest Holidays have now abandoned these plans.
CPRE Shropshire, along with CPRE Herefordshire and the ‘Save Mortimer Forest’ action group strongly opposed the idea, believing that it was a bad deal for wildlife, local people and for the Forestry Commission itself. Wildlife habitat would have been destroyed and, although the public would still have had access to the area, visitors to Mortimer Forest – who are attracted by the unspoilt beauty, peace and tranquillity of the forest – would not want to walk through a busy holiday park! Effectively, this reduced the area of forest which the public could actually enjoy – and all for a derisory return for the Forestry Commission (although the luxury cabins would have rented out at up to £4,000 per week, the Forestry Commission would have received only £3,000 per cabin, per year.)
So it is great news for this campaign which you can see the result of at
Ironbridge ex-power station site
The now redundant Ironbridge Power Station site (350 acres in all) was bought in June 2018 by UK regeneration company Harworth Group. The 350-acre site includes a large chunk of greenfield land as well as the brownfield ex-power station. It’s in the Shropshire Council area but right on the border with Telford & Wrekin.
Harworth's December 2019 planning application for 1,000 houses and other development was recommended for approval by Shropshire Council in September 2021 at the third time of asking (it had already received approval from T&WC). The original expectation that there would be 15% affordable housing has been reduced, via the justification of a "viability report", to only 5%, with a further 5% promised within a retirement village. The ability of the local road junctions, even with improvements, to cope with the extra traffic remains a contentious issue.
There is also an application for mineral extraction. The greenfield site will be levelled for housing by removing sand and gravel.
Poultry Units - Tasley
CPRE Shropshire remains extremely concerned about the increasing number of large poultry unit applications coming up in the county and is supporting the Tasley Action Group in its fight against such a unit near Bridgnorth, which would house nearly a quarter of a million chickens producing over 2,300 tonnes of manure every year. The application was originally passed by Shropshire Council in September 2017 but the TAG got that decision quashed in the Appeal Court in May 2019, on the grounds that Shropshire Council had not properly considered the environmental effects, mainly the disposal of the manure. A revised application was submitted in June 2019 but has yet to be re-determined, under further strong and determined opposition. The waters have been further muddied by the inclusion of the site at Footbridge Farm within Taylor Wimpey's plans for 1,050 houses at Tasley.
The Tasley Chicken Factory Farm Action Group successfully fundraised for their Appeal - see the button further below.