Views sought on growth strategies for Shropshire’s key market towns
Shropshire Council is asking people living in or near Shropshire’s main market towns for their views on a series of draft Local Economic Growth Strategies. A six-week consultation starts today (Monday 16 March 2020) and ends on 1 May.
The strategies – which cover Oswestry, Bridgnorth, Ludlow, Market Drayton and Whitchurch – will provide an economic focus for the town and the surrounding area, and outline the key actions that Shropshire Council and the relevant town and parish councils will be looking to deliver during the period 2020 to 2025.
The documents have been created and informed by Shropshire Council, working with the town council, parish councils and businesses in each area. They focus on the delivery of the council’s economic growth strategy in these key market towns, including their wider hinterlands and surrounding parishes.
Five out the six strategies are now complete. Talks with Shifnal Town Council are underway to complete the Local Economic Growth Strategy for Shifnal. Shrewsbury has been taken forward through the Big Town Plan.
Steve Charmley, Cabinet member for assets, economic growth and regeneration, said:
“These strategies will help Shropshire Council to achieve its objectives and deliver our economic vision for Shropshire.
“As well as informing and guiding delivery, these strategies are seen as having a key role in encouraging growth, attracting new businesses and investment into not just each town, but also the surrounding area, which in many cases is largely rural.
“I strongly encourage people to use this opportunity to comment on one or more of the documents. Any comments received as part of the consultation will be carefully considered and used to help update the draft strategies.”
Once drafts have been finalised Shropshire Council officers will work with each town to coordinate the delivery of the action plans. Officers will also support smaller towns to produce an action plan for their local area, if this is something they wanted to do.
The development of these draft strategies was a key action from the wider Economic Growth Strategy for Shropshire. The Local Economic Growth Strategies are fully aligned with the Local Plan Review and other key documents such as the Place Plans and emerging Communities and Rural Strategy.
To read the draft plans and take part in the consultation, go to www.shropshire.gov.uk/get-involved.
The strategies provide the local delivery of the Shropshire Economic Growth Strategy to reflect the geography of Shropshire and the key sectors, growth and ambitions for each of the market towns.
The key market towns are the economic focus for the surrounding (usually) more rural parishes which have smaller local centres within them. The surrounding areas turn to the key market town for key services such as GP surgeries/ medical centres, libraries, transport hubs and secondary and further education provision and well as supermarkets and such.
The strategies are not statutory documents but will act as an evidence base for those that are, as well as guiding the delivery of economic growth priorities locally. The strategies are focused on the delivery of economic growth and will align with other documents such as the Place Plans and will be taken into account as background evidence to inform the emerging Local Plan Review which will allocate land to deliver defined housing & employment land requirements in these towns.