A stretch of the river Teme in Ludlow is one of 27 sites that will soon learn whether they have been granted inland bathing water status.

A local group came together last year to compile an application for Ludlow, gaining the support of the Town Council and landowners along the stretch of the river from the Linney Park to Dinham Bridge.

A public survey gave overwhelming support for the application and revealed how local people value the river for its special nature and recreation.

Members of the local Shropshire Bluetits swimming network supported the river gaining bathing water status as they feel it will help monitor pollution in the river and in time reduce biological and chemical pollution.

Kate Pearce, a regular Bluetit swimmer, said "So many people enjoy swimming and paddling in the river and find it boosts their physical and mental health that we really hope the Ludlow application is successful. It will also benefit the wildlife in and around the river."

A section of the river Severn in Shrewsbury is the only other application from Shropshire.

Subject to the two-week consultation, which ended last week, Ludlow should know whether it will be one of 27 new designated swimming spots across England.

If designated, the site will receive regular water monitoring from the Environment Agency, who will investigate pollution sources and identify steps to be taken, which could include actions by water companies, farmers and others.

Water Minister Robbie Moore said: "Many people enjoy spending time in our rivers, lakes, and coastal beaches, and I am very aware of the value they bring in terms of social, health and wellbeing benefits.

"I want to continue to improve the quality of our bathing waters, which is why we are taking action across the board to drive up standards and hold water companies to account."

Currently, when selecting new sites, Defra considers how many people bathe there, which must be at least 100 a day during the bathing season, and if the site has suitable infrastructure and facilities, such as toilets. Only applications which met these factors were taken forward to the public consultation.