THE White Horse pub is ‘of great importance to the people of Wem’ and ‘will be a catalyst to its revival’ according to the results of a survey.

Wem Civic Society spent a number of weeks surveying residents both in Wem and the surrounding areas to gain an idea of what people want from the regeneration of the High Street building by Shropshire Council.

Three conclusions were released from the society – which will be discussed by Wem Town Council at its June meeting – and showed that affordable housing was also at the heart of the plans.


The report said: “The White Horse is seen as being of great importance to Wem, both as a remembrance of its past and a potential catalyst to its revival and regeneration as a bustling and vital market town.

“The incorporation of public space on the ground floor would do much to increase the footfall at this end of the High Street.

“This is crucial to the regeneration of this part of town.

“Affordable accommodation is desperately needed in Wem.

“The preferred option is for rented flats (social). These are seen as the best solution since once flats are sold they are lost to social housing.”

Wem Civic Society, in the survey report, said that residents want to ‘avoid a breach of faith’ many perceived in the rebuilding of Wem Town Hall, believing residents’ views were not taken into account.

It added: “The importance and affection for the White Horse held in the town cannot be over-emphasised.

“There is much anger about the eyesore that the building presents and the effects on outsiders’ views of Wem.

“There is even more anger that the deterioration has been allowed to happen. It is regarded as an important part of Wem’s heritage.”

The survey also returned views that any future use of the White Horse ‘should not undermine current businesses’ but that the ground floor space should be utilised properly.

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There were 219 respondents, overall.

Shelagh Richardson, from the society, said she expected there to be some discussion over the White Horse at Wem’s public forum on Thursday, May 23, with a presentation on the project by Andy Wigley.

Meanwhile, Wem Civic Society will welcome long-term friend Kath Reynolds on Tuesday, May 21 for a talk on health remedies in pre-NHS UK, and all are welcome.

Non-members can attend for £2.50 and it starts at 7.30pm.