Eight of us took part in the February litter pick. Because of our numbers we were able to disperse widely and pick up rubbish from places including the churchyard, Bull Ring, the Gaskell field and children’s playground, Bridge Road, Southfield Road and Farley Road. A big pile of full bags was the result of our efforts. The reward for our efforts, as it has been these past several months, was a refreshing free cuppa from Jo and Sue at Tea On The Square – very welcome on a cold morning!
The next litter pick will be held at 10:00am on Friday 10th March. All are welcome – meet in The Square in Much Wenlock. Further details are available from me or from Julian Walker 01952 728082 or firstname.lastname@example.org. We’re very willing to have a blitz on other areas outside the town – if you know of any litter black spots, please let us know.
Ironbridge Power Station has closed and it is now being decommissioned. After many years of generating power for the grid it is obsolete. The owner, Uniper, will now try to extract the company to its best advantage.
Meanwhile the host community has to fight its corner. It sits – just – within Shropshire Council and is its single largest NDR (business rates) contributor. It has an obvious link with the World Heritage Site of Ironbridge and is close to the boundary of the electoral division of Much Wenlock.
There is obvious potential for the site to be redeveloped over time and clearly there are concerns about the end use(s) and the impact that they might have on the locality. There are significant opportunities for local employment and for regional economic regeneration. I recently met with Cllr Claire Wild, within whose electoral division the power station sits, and Cllr Nicola Lowery, who is the Member for Ironbridge in order to open up lines of communication ahead of the Shropshire’s and Telford’s discussions with Uniper about the future of the site. We are determined to ensure that local communities’ voices are heard in coming months. The Shropshire Star has our story.
The excavation of the flood attenuation ponds at The Shylte (Stretton Road) and The Sytche are progressing well after the Christmas break.
Before Christmas there were some issues with mud on the road and, as a result of my intervention, the road was reswept on 23rd December. The contractor has installed further wheel washes at the Shylte site compound and Sytche and has also created a tarmac area at Shylte to try and prevent as much mud getting on to the Highway. I understand that the highways situation is now much improved.
Voting is your democratic right as a citizen of the UK.
Local elections for town and parish councils and for Shropshire Council take place on 4th May. You may vote only if you are on the electoral register. Individual voter registration means that it is no longer the responsibility of the “head of the household” to list the names of voters. It is now down to the individual. To check if you’re on the register, send an email to email@example.com or call 0345 678 9015.
If you’re not on the register, there are a number of ways in which you can apply. For many of us, our national insurance number and our date of birth, coupled with a smartphone means we can register in less than two minutes. Just go to www.gov.uk/register-to-vote. If you’d rather complete a paper form, please contact 0345 678 9015 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
As part of the Inspector’s Examination of the Site Allocations and Management of Development (SAMDev) Plan, Shropshire Council committed to an early partial review of its Local Plan, extending the plan period from 2026 to 2036. Strategic options include:
- Housing Requirement
- Strategic distribution of future growth
- Strategies for employment growth
- Delivering development in rural settlements
Much Wenlock, of course, has a Neighbourhood Development Plan which was adopted in July 2014. It covers the period from 2013 to 2026 and clearly the roll forward to 2036 raises a number of important issues. I am keen to ensure that the consultation process recognises the Neighbourhood Plan’s importance and the local tensions around housing numbers. I therefore spoke at Shropshire Council’s Cabinet meeting today (18th January). You can hear what I said at about 22:40 and Portfolio Holder Cllr Mal Price’s response at around 28:10.
3rd December saw the sixteenth Christmas Fayre hit the streets of our town.
I rolled out of bed at 5:30am to take my place marshaling in Barrow Street by The Raven Hotel ensuring that stallholders could transport their wares to the marquees. Despite the cold and the early hour, folk were cheerful and looking forward to a busy day. They weren’t disappointed. By 10:30 when the stalls had been dressed and stocked, the streets were packed.
Parking at Wm Brookes School filled almost immediately and the park and ride service from Edge Renewables site on Stretton Road was soon in full flow. Folk trying to drive past the town encountered some delays simply as a result of the volume of traffic on our narrow streets.
All of the stalls that I saw seemed to be doing a thriving trade. The hot food was flying out, visitors from far and wide browsed the jewellery and art stalls, and charity raffle tickets sold well. I know, because I invested heavily (and won a couple of prizes)!
This event was very well-received and deserves our support – a few folk work very hard to make a success of it and they need more. If you’d like to help, contact email@example.com
I recently referred to the Boundary Commission’s exercise to reduce the number of MPs from 650 to 600 and the proposal to split the current Ludlow constituency – of which Much Wenlock is part.
Having taken soundings locally, and also being asked by Much Wenlock Town Council, I spoke at the Boundary Commission hearing in Shrewsbury on 7th November. I made the case for Much Wenlock to be part of the new Ludlow & Leominster constituency with changes to the proposals to exclude two Bromyard wards. This counter-proposal means that the new constituency elector numbers would still satisfy the required criterion. See www.bce2018.org.uk.
Our MP, Philip Dunne, spoke along similar lines in the same session and we were supported by Lord (Jeff) Rooker, the former Labour minister, who nowadays lives in Ludlow. The comments on the consultation will be published in early 2017 as part of the secondary consultation.
On Friday five of us set off from The Square armed with bags and pickers to find more litter around the town. Farley Road, as ever, yielded most but the usual selection of discarded bottles, cans and packets from around the town swelled the bags which Shropshire Council provides.
Unusually for our tidy-ups, it would be possible to identify the culprit of one bit of detritus that was found this week – a vehicle number plate that seems to have become detached from a 2011-registered Mercedes-Benz Vito panel van. I suspect that the owner didn’t drop it at the side of the road – it’s most likely to have come loose unintentionally.
The next litter pick will be held on Monday 5th December, starting at The Square at about 10:15am. We’re holding this, unusually, on a Monday because it’s immediately following the Christmas Fair. The organisers always arrange a tidy-up after the Fair has cleared away but we expect to be able to carry out a second “sweep” to good effect. If you’d like to join us, just turn up as arranged. Hi-viz jackets and pickers are provided but, if you have your own, bring them along and wear a pair of gardening gloves. Sue and Jo at Tea On The Square kindly provide us with a complimentary cuppa to reward our efforts when we finish.
A couple of years ago, BT carried out an exercise seeking to identify community views regarding little-used public telephones. BT is now undertaking a formal 90-day consultation process, commencing this month, in respect of a further list of 214 payphones in Shropshire.
There are only two on the list in my Much Wenlock division – in Homer and in Quarry Road, Broseley Wood. At the previous consultation it was evident that only six calls had been made from the Homer payphone in the previous twelve months. BT now say that, in the past twelve months, no calls* have been made from this payphone. This may be a reflection of the increasing use of mobile telephones.
I’d be very interested to learn your views on this if you’re a Homer resident or if, for instance, you walk in the area.
Meanwhile, in Quarry Road, Broseley Wood, the classic red phone box has had no calls made from it in the past twelve months. It seems likely that Broseley Town Council will ask for the box to be retained if the telephony equipment is removed. I’d like to know what your views are on this.
As we know, at present the quality of the mobile signal in Much Wenlock, Broseley and the surrounding area varies according to where you are and which network you use. I’m frequently attending meetings with network providers urging them to invest locally so that the signal improves but, until that time, folk on the move may have to reply on a payphone in an emergency. I look forward to hearing from you either by phone(!) – 01952 728802, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- In my original post, I misread the schedule and indicated that three calls had been made from the Homer payphone in the previous twelve months. In fact it was a big round zero!
Today four of us gathered to go litter picking along Bridgnorth Road and Farley Road which is usually where most of the litter is found. We also covered Barrow Street, Hunters Gate, Swan Meadow and Walton Hills where, unsurprisingly, there wasn’t much to collect. One of the enjoyable aspects of this walk around our streets is chatting to folk, who are appreciative of our efforts.
Nonetheless, as well as the usual bottles, cans and packets, we collected a couple of hub caps and a piece of red bodywork which looked as though it belonged to a tractor or similar. We left our collected rubbish in St Mary’s Lane car park where it will be picked up, as arranged, by Shropshire Council.
The lovely folk at Tea On The Square provided a complimentary cuppa to thank us for our efforts afterwards. If you’d like to join us in our next session it will be held on Friday 18th November. Just turn up in The Square at 10:00am.