Shropshire Council

Evidence base

Shropshire Council is currently undertaking a Local Plan Review. The Local Plan Review will be informed by an extensive evidence base.

On this page is a list of the current evidence base documents, organised into themes. The documents listed are available to download via the links provided.

More evidence base documents will follow in due course as we progress with the Local Plan Review.

Housing and employment

The National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) requires Local Planning Authorities to undertake a full and objective assessment of housing need in order to identify the total number of net additional dwellings that are required to meet needs over a specified period. The resultant housing need identified through this assessment is termed a full objectively assessed housing need (FOAHN).

The NPPF specifies that the size, type and tenure of housing needed for different groups in the community should be assessed and reflected in planning policies including, but not limited to, those who require affordable housing, families with children, older people, students, people with disabilities, service families, travellers, people who rent their homes and people wishing to commission or build their own homes.

This assessment is undertaken through a strategic housing market assessment (SHMA). The SHMA for Shropshire will consist of two reports, the first will seek to define the Shropshire housing market area(s) and provide a more detailed profile of Shropshire; the second report will provide a summary of the assessment of the need for housing for particular groups of people within Shropshire.

The Strategic Land Availability Assessment (SLAA) is a technical assessment of the suitability; availability; and achievability (including viability) of land for housing and employment development. As such, the SLAA incorporates the process formerly known as the Strategic Housing Land Availability Assessment (SHLAA). The SLAA represents a key component of the evidence base which will support the Shropshire Council Local Plan Review. It will also contribute towards informing Shropshire Council’s approach to the delivery of development, particularly housing and employment development; across Shropshire (all references to Shropshire within this document exclude the Telford and Wrekin Council area).

Please Note:

Whilst the SLAA is an important technical document, it does not allocate land for development or include all locations where future housing and employment growth will occur. The SLAA ultimately provides information which will be investigated further through the plan-making process.

Also, to inform the current Local Plan Review, we're currently seeking to finalise our assessment of sites. As such it may not be possible to consider new site promotions submitted after the 31 December 2019 within this assessment of sites. Any site promotions that are not considered within the assessment of sites informing the current Local Plan Review will be filed for inclusion within a future Strategic Land Availability Assessment (SLAA).

Strategic Sites Assessments

Site Assessments have been undertaken to inform the identification of strategic sites within the Local Plan Review. These assessments involve three stages of assessment, these are:

  1. Strategic Overview of Sites. (Undertaken within the SLAA)
  2. A screen informed by consideration of a site’s location; availability; size; potential to contribute to achieving the Shropshire Economic Growth Strategy; and whether there were obvious physical, heritage or environmental constraints present, based on the strategic assessment undertaken within the SLAA.
  3. A more detailed review informed by assessments by other key council departments, such as Highways, Heritage, Ecology, Public Protection, Landscape and Flood.

Sites Assessments

Site Assessments have been undertaken to inform the identification of proposed housing and mixed use allocations within the Local Plan Review. These assessments involve three stages of assessment, these are:

  1. Strategic Overview of Sites. (Undertaken within the SLAA)
  2. A screen informed by site availability, size and the presence of any obvious physical, heritage or environmental constraints.
  3. A more detailed review informed by assessments by other key council departments, such as Highways, Heritage, Ecology, Public Protection, Landscape and Flood.

Site assessments have been summarised by Place Plan Area (links for all areas coming soon):

M54 Growth Corridor – Strategic Options Study (follow this link for the PDF document)

A strategic desktop study to assess the extent of the opportunity associated with the M54 Corridor and identify potential locations/sites for both employment and residential development to drive economic growth in the future along the M54 Corridor.


The dataset provides a summary of the Oxford Economics jobs and economic growth forecasts for Shropshire for the period from 2016 to 2036.

Green Belt

To assess the extent to which the land within the Shropshire Green Belt performs against the purposes of Green Belts, as set out in paragraph 80 of the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF):

  • To check the unrestricted sprawl of large built-up areas;
  • To prevent neighbouring towns merging into one another;
  • To assist in safeguarding the countryside from encroachment;
  • To preserve the setting and special character of historic towns; and
  • To assist in urban regeneration, by encouraging the recycling of derelict and other urban land.


The Green Belt Review represents an assessment of the harm to specified Green Belt purposes resulting from the release of identified parcels of Green Belt land around the proposed Principal/Key Centre, Community Hub settlements and promoted strategic locations within and adjacent to the Green Belt.


The settlement hierarchy will inform decisions on a settlement’s potential to accommodate new development by allocating it in to one of four categories. Strategic Centre, Principle and Key Centres, Community Hubs and Other Rural Settlements (Countryside).

It has been produced through an analysis of settlement function. Settlement function involves consideration of:

  • The population and number of households within a settlement; and
  • The extent to which the settlement provides services and facilities; employment opportunities; high speed broadband; and public transport links.

Gypsies and Travellers

The Shropshire Gypsy and Traveller Accommodation Assessment (GTAA) analyses the latest available evidence to identify the housing needs of Gypsies, Travellers and Travelling Showpeople from across the county.

The latest GTAA (February 2020) updates previously published information relating to need, including: occupancy and turnover on public sites, unauthorised encampments and the overall picture of need over a plan period to 2038.

An invitation for anyone to submit details of a site that may prove suitable for Gypsy and Traveller Accommodation.


This study assesses the risk of flooding from all sources now and in the future. It takes into account the impacts of climate change and assesses the impact that development will have on flood risk. It has been used to inform the choice of housing and employment sites for the Local Plan Review.

Appendix A of the SFRA Report consists of 51 interactive pdf maps, each covering a small portions of Shropshire. Amongst other things, these maps show: 

  • Flood zones 2, 3a and 3b.
  • Risk of surface water flooding
  • Areas susceptible to groundwater flooding.
  • Risk of flooding from reservoirs.

Maps of specific areas are available on request.

Water Cycle Study

This looks at the effect development will have on water supply, wastewater collection and wastewater treatment. Work has commenced on a Water Cycle Study to inform the Local Plan Review.

This study assesses the landscape around all the settlements identified for growth in the Local Plan Review. It looks at landscape character and visual amenity separately and identifies how sensitive each is to change caused by housing and employment development.

This is a review of the county’s open space and recreational needs. It provides updated information by Place Plan area and follows the findings of the previous open space study conducted in 2009. It assesses how relevant the 2009 methodology, and the standards informed by it, are for the Local Plan Review.

This identifies those elements of the current landscape which contribute to the setting of the Registered Battlefield. It documents their contribution to the significance of the battlefield, sets out how that significance could be harmed by development and defines the more sensitive areas within the battlefield’s setting.

Visitor Surveys: Colemere and Brown Moss (Link available soon)

Visitor surveys for two internationally designated wildlife sites (Colemere and Brown Moss) have been carried out to inform the Habitat Regulations Assessment for the Local Plan Review. Development proposed by the Local Plan Review has the potential to affect these sites though increased recreational pressure. These visitor surveys assess the baseline levels of recreational pressure, analyse patterns of visitor access and behaviour and identify any particular areas where recreational activity may come into conflict with sensitive habitats.


Shropshire Council is currently undertaking a whole of Plan Viability Assessment to inform the ongoing Local Plan Review. The purpose of this assessment is to ensure that development sites that are included in our Plan are deliverable. This assessment will consider the costs of the various policies the Council is developing (including those relating to such issues as affordable housing, climate change, open space, developer contributions and CIL) and the impact of these on development viability. This process is a requirement of the 2019 National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) and the associated update (in September 2019) of the Planning Practice Guidance (PPG). Please Note: This assessment does not consider the suitability of sites for development.

A ‘rough and ready’ first draft of this report (first drafts of appendices 1, 5, 6, 7 and 8 are included within the draft document, first drafts of appendices 9, 10, 11 and 13 are provided as separate documents and appendices 2, 3, 4, 12, 14 and 15 will support the final document) has now been prepared and we would welcome comments from representatives of the development industry including developers/landowners, agents, Housing Associations, etc by emailing on or before Friday 6th March 2020. This is to ensure that the approach taken to viability in the study is proportionate, appropriate and robust.

Cross-Boundary Issues