Shrewsbury Business Chamber call for infrastructure investment

Shrewsbury Business Chamber has lobbied for the economic expansion of the town through the Local Plan Review, support for the North West Relief Road, direct London trains and other associated matters. We are now pressing Shropshire Council and Shrewsbury & Atcham MP Daniel Kawczynski on the need to follow this through and provide the roads, schools, medical facilities and public transport to support this development . To date much of the expansion has been housing construction; land zoned for employment has not yet been developed through a lack of roads and other services. Delays in bringing forward employment space makes it very difficult for Shrewsbury based firms to expand, attract new business to the town and also recruit staff, especially in high value sectors such as engineering, telecoms and medical services.  

Much of the infrastructure is funded through a tax on the proceeds of house sales, but in practice -other than roads to serve the houses – development and the supply of these support facilities lag some way behind occupation of the houses. This creates cross- town congestion and a strain on existing educational and medical facilities.

Looking to the wider area, members of the Chamber Executive will be attending one of the regular discussion meetings with our Member of Parliament scheduled for 28th February. We will be pressing him for details of the Governments proposed ‘Marches Infrastructure Fund‘ to improve England/Wales cross border road and rail links, and also his thoughts concerning HS2, aware that the latter is supported by West Midlands and Northern business and political organisations. We would be interested in Shrewsbury Business Chambers thoughts concerning this proposal – should it go ahead despite the ever increasing cost? 

At the time of writing Flybe, the UK’s largest regional airline, providing business and leisure access to all parts of the British Isles and ‘nearest Europe’ is seeking financial support from the Government. Is this justified?  Or could other airlines provide the same service (to businesses in particular) without the subsidy? Again , we would be interested in Chamber members’ views – please come along to the next meetings  (see www.shrewsburybusinesschamber.com ) and let us know .

Charles Howell 

cth@cgpooks.co.uk

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