A derelict former brewery site will be transformed after a Wem haulier’s plan for new HGV Workshops and offices was approved by council planners.

The scheme proposed by local firm DR & FA Ford Transport will see time called on the former Hanby Ales Brewery on Wem Industrial Estate, with the building set to be demolished and replaced with a new 36 metre (118ft) workshop to house a new four-bay maintenance operation with office facilities located above.

A lorry park for 50 vehicles will also be built on the site, which will become the main base of operations for the firm when completed.

The firm currently occupies several units on Wem Industrial Estate, but a planning statement submitted in support of the application said the acquisition of unit C9 would see the firm consolidate its activity onto one ‘efficient’ site including appropriate workshop and office facilities.

“D.R & F.A Ford Transport founded in 1990 is an established haulage company operating across the country and are a prominent local employer employing 90 members of staff while supporting several local businesses,” it said.

“They have operated from Wem industrial estate for 21 years and having acquired Unit C9 and associated land in 2016. They wish to develop an appropriate haulage yard to allow them to park and maintain their fleet of lorries, alongside suitable offices for their team of transport managers.

“This development will support an established business which is a long standing local employer.”

In approving the scheme, council planners noted concern about the impact of lighting overspill onto a “well preserved” scheduled monument to the north of the site.

An ecology servey also noted badger activity and several badger sett entrances on the site, which the developer had amended site clearance plans to take account of.

The plan was granted full planning permission, subject to submission of a detail plan for a “buffer zone” around the badger setts, and submission of a lighting scheme for the site.