A PLANNING application has been made for a new cafe in Ludlow Town Centre.

Woodspace Partners Ltd has applied to use the ground floor of 5 Old Street as a café.

As the building is Grade II listed, a parallel application for listed building consent has been submitted.

Queens House was listed at Grade II in 1974. It was the home of Thomas Hackluit before becoming a was a pub in the 16th century, initially known as the Red Lion before becoming the Seven Stars and ultimately the Falcon. It again became a residence, though in the First World War it accommodated a branch of the Red Cross.

Space above the cafe will be converted into four flats.

The former Cat Protection League charity shop has been vacant since 2018 when it was put up for sale.

"It is an elegant building in a prominent position on the edge of the town centre," said Andy Boddington, Shropshire councillor for Ludlow North.

He is generally supportive but says that more information is needed about the impact upon trees in the area.

!It has a long garden which stretches 34 metres to the historic town wall," added Mr Boddington.

"Although some details about tree removal need to be examined, this a good proposal that will bring a prominent empty retail unit back into use. It will continue the trend, nationwide as well as in Ludlow, of town centres becoming places to experience, linger over coffee or a meal, but purchase fewer goods. It will also provide more flats in the town centre. We need small dwellings like those proposed.

The planning application indicates that the café will be open from 9.00am to 17.30pm Monday to Saturday and 10.00am to 4.00pm on Sundays. It is expected that three people will be employed full time and four part time.

Four flats are proposed: a two bedroom flat, a single bedroom flat and two bedsits. They will be accessed through the existing side alley.

Mr Boddington says the need to remove trees could be an issue

"Some large trees in the garden will be removed due to their size, the risk they pose to the neighbouring buildings and the ancient Town Wall, and the overshadowing they cause," he said.

"Two Laburnum trees are toxic to humans and animals and have no place in an eating area. Cherry, copper beech and silver birch trees will also be felled. They are stated to have outgrown their locations and to overshadow the garden. The Copper Beech is reported as being a danger to the town wall through root damage and potentially falling during a storm."