AN ATTEMPT to construct a 50-room residential care home in Wem has been thrown out by planning officers.

The plans would have seen a large development on land off Mill Street, which would have included two blocks of residential care homes comprising 50 units with communal facilities, car parking, diversion of public right of way and associated works.

But after concerns were raised by residents and members of Wem Town Council, the planning application was refused in 2019 on grounds related to parking, landscaping and flooding.

An appeal was lodged with Shropshire Council in June, with town councillors once again reiterating their objections to the plans.

On Tuesday, September 8, planning officer Helen Hockenhull came to her decision on the appeal, upholding the initial rejection.

Ms Hockenhull outlined the reasons for the rejection in 34 individual points, with the main issues being the effect of the proposal on the character and appearance of Wem Conservation Area and the setting of nearby listed buildings and the effect of the proposal on highway safety in particular the provision of off-road car parking.

In her report, Ms Hockenhull said: “The site is in an accessible location to the south of Wem.

“It is proposed to provide specialist housing which would contribute to needs of the area.

“I accept that part of the site has historically been occupied by buildings and the development of the site presents an opportunity to provide enhancement to this ‘Gateway to Wem.’

“However, while I have concluded that the appeal scheme would result in no adverse impacts on highway safety, I have found that it would cause harm to the character and appearance of the Wem Conservation Area and the setting of the listed Wem Mill.

“This harm is not outweighed by the public benefits of the scheme therefore the proposal fails to achieve the conservation objectives of the Framework and the development plan.”

Ms Hockenhull added: “For the reasons given above and having had regard to all other matters raised, I conclude that the appeal should be dismissed.”