Oswestry Town Councillors made a unanimous decision at Wednesday's meeting to support future development plans presented by Oswestry Civic Society.

At the development and planning committee, councillors heard from David Ward, planning adviser to the Civic Society, who outlined details for Oswestry 2050, a plan that considers Oswestry’s growth in population, transport and the need for housing.

Mr Ward’s presentation followed on from a meeting held by the Civic Society in January, which saw around 70 members of the public, and many town councillors, attend to hear of the future plans.

Mr Ward said: “It is predicted that by 2050, Oswestry’s population will be around 35,000. However current plans in place by Shropshire Council only cater for around 25,000.

“This 2050 plan works towards determining the future shape of settlements, roads and getting Oswestry to make a name for itself.

“The Civic Society are looking at the ‘bigger picture’. We are looking at creating new communities in between Oswestry, Gobowen and Whittington.

“Each village could develop its own identity, and community living would be fostered. The villages would capitalise on their existing strengths, such as The Venue and sports facilities at Park Hall.

“We also have national assets here in Oswestry - the Hillfort could be made into a country park, and the Orthopaedic Hospital would be better linked.”

Mr Ward said that the Civic Society particularly wanted to concentrate of transport links and bringing communities closure together.

Councillor Duncan Kerr said the 2050 plan was a credit to the Civic Society.

“The way I see it is that this is the only alternative. I wish the Civic Society all the best.”

Cllr John Price said: “I take my hat off to the plan. It does drive land value up, and although I’d rather see natural growth in the villages, this plan is the war forward. It’s a big job to plan but it’s common sense.”

The council agreed to support the concept of the development, and made a motion to plan meetings with neighbouring town and parish councils to discuss working together.

The committee also agreed to provide an open door to the Civic Society for future plans.

Cllr Chris Schofield added: “This plan could solve a lot of problems for Oswestry.”