WORK could soon start on the second housing development to be built by Shropshire Council’s housing company after planning permission was granted.

The council’s northern planning committee approved the application for 23 houses and bungalows on a site at Ellesmere Wharf at a meeting on Tuesday.

It is the second scheme by Cornovii Developments Ltd to win approval, with plans for another two in the pipeline.

The company was set up by the council in 2019 with the aim of building 1,000 houses across the county in five years.

Cornovii says the Ellesmere development, which will be accessed off Bridgewater Street, has been designed with a range of property types to address local need. The site had previously been earmarked for 60 flats.

Ellesmere Town Council and Ellesmere Rural Parish Council both supported the application and there were no representations from members of the public.

Eight of the properties will be affordable homes – six as affordable rent and two to be marketed as shared ownership.

The development includes an area of public open space which is slightly smaller than planning policy would normaly require, and the developer will make a financial contribution towards improving nearby public spaces to compensate.

Planning officers recommended the application be approved and the committee voted unanimously in support.

Councillor Gerald Dakin said it was good to see the derelict site finally being developed.

He said: “I’m very pleased to see it’s moving on, because it’s exactly the kind of houses we want to see in this kind of location.

“I like this development very much indeed and it’s very much needed.”

A report to the planning committee by case officer Philip Mullineux said the council’s conservation team raised concerns about the impact of the proposed development on the town’s conservation area, but these are outweighed by the benefits of the scheme.

The report says: “It is considered that development as proposed offers an acceptable range of dwellings and public open space along with a financial contribution towards improvements to existing open space/recreational facilities that is considered acceptable with consideration to the location and existing nearby open space provision.

“Issues in relation to flooding drainage with the attachment of conditions to any approval notice issued are considered satisfactory, as are matters in relation to ecology and residential amenity and land contamination.

“Residential design and scale along with landscape and visual impact is considered to be adequately addressed, with mitigation as proposed and this matter also subject to condition in order to ensure satisfactory consideration to landscape mitigation and integration into the surrounding environment.

“Historic matters have also been considered as part of the application processing and on balance with consideration to the material considerations as discussed in this report overall there are no concerns raised of significance on this latter issue.

“Public highway access and impacts also considered acceptable.”

Cornovii has already had plans for 33 houses on a site in Shrewsbury approved, and contractors have now started on site. Another application for 35 homes in Ifton Heath, St Martin’s, is awaiting a decision.

The company is also in discussions with a developer planning to build 500 homes in Whitchurch, with the intention of taking on the first phase of around 100 properties.