News in brief

Zac returns

Zac Oliver, the Broseley boy suffering from a rare form of cancer, has returned from successful initial treatment in Philadelphia. The four year old is receiving CAR-T gene therapy not available to him on the NHS, which may give him a 60 to 80% chance of survival. Zac’s family are waiting to find out the next step in the process and are still raising funds to cover costs – visit Zachariah’s Fight Against Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia to keep up with news on Zac’s family’s fundraising drive.

Chinese celebration

Chinese New Year this year falls on Tuesday 5 February, and Newport will this year be celebrating early, with a street market and entertainment on Sunday 3 February. The event will run from noon to 5pm along the cobbled St Mary’s Street and there will be stalls, food, balloons, crafts and fun rides, as well as Chinese decorations and performances. Visit Newport Chinese Festival 2019 on Facebook for details.

Duck dates

Ironbridge’s giant ducks have starring roles in a limited edition charity calendar – and they’re also going to feature in a mural for sick and injured children. Julie Ward, who arranged the striking art trail and was nominated in the Telford Community Pride Awards, says, “We’re currently working on a mural that we’re donating to the Children’s Unit at Princess Royal Hospital, and a few of the family are also doing something very special very soon – but that’s a secret!”

Crier farewell

Bridgnorth’s town crier has announced that he is hanging up his tricorn hat. John James, who’s 83 years old, has held the position for 17 years and is set to give up the role. Bridgnorth Town Council is as yet unsure whether they will be seeking a replacement.

Legacy funding

Thanks to the Telford 50 Legacy Fund, groups across the borough have received funds for their community buildings and facilities. Local beneficiaries include the Ironbridge Coracle Trust, who aim to develop a museum shed, the Coalbrookdale and Ironbridge Community Centre, for refurbishment of their toilets, and the Exotic Zoo, who’re planning to develop an engaging and peaceful sensory area.

Greenbelt gripes

Shifnal residents are expressing concern about possible loss of green belt in their area due to development. Many residents are also worried about how already oversubscribed services and busy roads will cope with growth, as well as the effect new housing estates and employment areas will have on local monuments, wildlife and conservation areas. Their concerns are linked to wider proposals in the Local Plan Review by Shropshire County Council, which sets out chosen sites for development including Shifnal. The consultation period ends on Thu 31 Jan. Details are available at libraries and council offices or go to

Ironbridge regeneration

The new owners of Ironbridge Power Station, Harworth Group, held an open day in October to engage with the local community about their plans for the site. To read the two alternative visions for the site, visit Harworth expects to develop a more detailed masterplan early this year, with final details on the preferred option being released later in the year.

Volunteers sought

Over the past 18 months, Bridge Advice Service has assisted numerous local people, mostly regarding benefit and employment problems. The team are hoping to develop their service this year and is looking to recruit two extra volunteers, who would receive training and support. If you’d like to find out more, email [email protected] or call in to Bridgnorth Community Hub, off Severn Street Car Park, on Mondays between 10am and noon.

‘Broxit’ mooted

In a potential move that’s been labelled ‘Broxit’, Broseley Town Council are considering a shift from Shropshire County Council to Telford & Wrekin Council. Members voted to request a community governance review following a row over Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) funds which Broseley councillors feel are being denied them. The two councils disagree about money available from development, which town councillors want to be used to improve drainage in the Birchmeadow, while the county council say it is needed for ‘critical infrastructure’.

Voter costs

Shropshire Council, which announced a spending freeze in November, has revealed that the cost of chasing up household voting forms in 2016 exceeded £35,000; equivalent to over 14,800 KS2 free school meals; more than 4,000 hours of personal care for vulnerable and elderly people; or repairs to almost 300 pot holes. By law, residents must register on the electoral roll and the council must also ensure the register is up to date.

Defibrillators installed

Four defibrillators have been installed in villages in south Shropshire, with the lifesaving machines being placed at Brockton School and Shipton Village Hall, as well as in two redundant phone boxes at Stanton Long and Easthope.

Council surgery

Councillor David Turner is holding an advice surgery on Saturday 12 January at 10.30am at Much Wenlock Museum. David hopes to be accompanied by a town councillor and a representative of the police. He adds, “Of course, if any resident has a problem that they think I can help with, they can contact me at any time on 01952 728802 or [email protected]

Licence review

The BBC Is reviewing licence entitlements in a consultation to end on Tuesday 12 February. There are several options, which include continuing to provide free licences for those aged over 75, which would mean funding would have to be found through cuts elsewhere in the service. To review the issues and have your say, go to or call 0800 232 1382.

  • Published on 17th December 2018

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