The issue of repairing the town walls was back on the agenda when the Ludlow Residents Group met for a second time last Saturday.

Members of the group, which had discussed the issue at its first meeting in January, were told that a focus group had been created which included a representative from the Civic Society, St Laurence’s church and a conservation architect.

A first meeting is scheduled for Friday, March 15, after which the focus group will seek a meeting with Ludlow Town council to explore ways of working together to resolve the issue.

It is now 11 years since a section of the town walls bounding St Laurence's churchyard collapsed, with some maintenance carried out to prevent further decay.

The section of wall to the rear of the church that collapsed in February 2013, necessitated a short evacuation of some homes while engineers carried out safety checks.

Following the collapse there was an extended period in which it was debated whether responsibility for the repairs was with Ludlow Town Council, St Laurence Church or Shropshire Council.

Eventually, the town council took the lead and various surveys have taken place to determine the condition of the wall and what needs to be done.

In November 2021 the repair of the town walls was identified as a priority for the following financial year.

In January this year, Ludlow Town Council issued a statement on progress on repairing the walls.

This revealed that the council is once again engaged in a legal argument on who is responsible for the repairs. The Diocese of Hereford does not have responsibility. Closed graveyards become the responsibility of the local authority.

For the last seven years, the town council has accepted responsibility for “leading on the repairs” but it has always denied it is responsible for the costs.

But if, as expected, the town council bears sole responsibility for repairing it will need to borrow money.

At current rates, the repayments on a project cost of £3 million would be £102,563 a year over 30 years, adding £29 a year to the current precept of £231.95.