Vision and ambition

Shropshire is a fantastic place in which to live, work and visit, with a clean and beautiful natural environment, communities who look out for each other, whether in our rural areas or within one of our historic market towns, excellent schools, low crime and opportunity for everyone.

Our vision for our communities is to continue the ‘Shropshire way’ tradition of having self-reliant communities who support one another and have access to good schools, leisure opportunities and cultural experiences. Our vision to have the healthiest population in the country starts with local people themselves. We need people to want to be more healthy, aware and incentivised to take proper care of their health, and for this to come from them rather than from us. Our role therefore involves supporting people to take responsibility to look after themselves, increasing their quality of life as well as their length of life, and reducing ill health to minimise demand and dependency on public services.

Our ambition for our economy is focused on productivity, quality and collaboration.

Shropshire is a high quality location with one of the best natural and historic environments in England and a generally well performing economy.

We have particularly low unemployment (3.4%), a resident population that is becoming more highly skilled and a successful business base with over 15,300 enterprises registered. However we must increase our economic productivity and grow the current economy from £6.1 billion GVA by focusing on higher value added sectors, encouraging greater innovation, collaboration between education and businesses, and encouraging higher skilled professional and technical occupations. The strategy is one very much based on quality and a targeted approach which must also attract younger people to the county to work in order to rebalance our ageing demographic – a key driver to establishing a new University Centre in Shrewsbury.

Political Context

Shropshire is a Conservative run authority with 49 of the 74 Elected Members being Conservative. There are 8 Labour councillors, 12 Liberal Democrats, and 5 Independents.

Shropshire Council was established following the abolition of five former District Councils and a County Council in 2009. Shropshire also has 153 Town and Parish Councils. Shrewsbury Town Council is one of the largest Town Council’s in the UK, however, there are many Parish Councils covering just a few hundred households. Consequently, there is a vast difference in the ambition and capability of Town and Parish Councils due to the disparity in population, geographic scale and resources each Council serves. This is considered to be a virtue and we recognise that ‘one size does not fit all’.

Our Vision

High-level outcome
Medium Term
Actions Measures of success/impact
HP RC PE OtC      

The range of opportunities for leisure, culture and community participation has increased, with low or no funding

Work with current and potential alternative providers of services to identify and implement opportunities to deliver services differently.

New and alternative management options in place for assets outside of the Council’s core offer by March 2018

Alternative and new management arrangements self-sufficient relating to their local running costs by March 2019

  • Number of Library visitors
  • Number of Museum visitors
  • Number of Leisure Centre visitors

Research options for communities and individuals to connect and work together to take up opportunities to meet their needs locally.

Enabling communities to take more control of their place including public amenity space.

Number of volunteers involved in:

  • Maintaining a clean and attractive environment
  • Encouraging biodiversity
  • Providing social inclusion opportunities
  • Supporting people in volunteering or into employment

A clean and attractive environment is maintained

Develop and implement initiatives to improve air quality and water quality including appropriate green infrastructure such as ‘green walls’ to reduce air pollution at target sites.

  • Reduce the number of air pollution monitoring sites required to be operational in Shropshire

Develop and adopt new Local Transport Plan

  • % of household waste sent for reuse, recycling and composting
  • Keeping Shropshire’s streets clean - % of inspections falling below the acceptable standard for litter and detritus

Identify and pursue carbon reduction and renewable energy opportunities e.g. kinetic storage and solar energy

  • Increased number of carbon reduction and renewable energy schemes in place at Council owned assets

Needs have been met to prevent demand from escalating

Reviewing the Falls Prevention Service to improve completion rates to ensure that maximum benefits for service users are achieved

Introducing a postural stability programme across Shropshire to provide early intervention at those at risk of falls

Promoting flu vaccination uptake amongst care staff in the independent sector

Introduce a prototype telecare programme to support assisted discharge from Hospital

Introduce an overall asset based approach to assessment

Provide information advice and guidance on where to find support and how to remain independent through commissioned pre-assessment activity and Let’s Talk Local sessions

Working with people receiving services to ensure that they are enabled to achieve their potential with as little reliance on assessed services as possible.

Configuring Housing Support Services to work with people on the edge of care who require minimum but timely input to remain independent and well.

  • Permanent admissions to residential and nursing care homes per 100,000 population
  • % of older people aged 65+ who were still at home 91 days after discharge from hospital into reablement services (ASCOF 2B)
  • Delayed transfers of care from hospital (adults 18+) per 100,000 population attributable to adult social care (ASCOF 2C)
  • % of adults (18-64) with Learning Disability who live in their own home or with family (ASCOF 1G)
  • % of adults (18-64) in contact with secondary mental health services who live independently with or without support (ASCOF 1H)
  • % of Adult Social Care users who have as much social contact as they would like
  • % of family carers who have as much social contact as they would like
  • % of initial contacts for Adult Social Care support referred to community based support
  • Service users rating for their quality of life as a whole (ASCOF 1A)
  • Service user rating for how much control they have over their daily life (ASCOF 1B)
  • Service users who state that they feel safe (ASCOF 4A)


Invest in Shropshire

Our economic growth vision for Shropshire is for the county to be the best place to do business and invest, renowned for its pool of local talent and expertise. We will strive to maximise our economic potential and increase productivity by fully utilising the benefits of our special environment and high quality assets.

Our Communities

The Council works actively in and with communities to support economic activity, i.e. increase investment into Shropshire, and to allow people to be supported to find solutions from within communities that will help them live the life they want to lead, helping to reduce the demand on services.

Partnership working between the Council and the Voluntary, Community and Social Enterprise (VCSE) sector continues to be essential in understanding changing community needs and how we can collaboratively address them. Many of our services now aim to signpost people with lower level needs to community support and the VCSE plays a vital role in ensuring that these needs can be met.

There is a long and strong history of community led planning at a parish area level, which is key to gathering intelligence about local assets, opportunities and needs. Plans are created through local groups of residents, representatives of the parish council and other community stakeholders, often with the support of the Council.

A range of plans are being created – parish plans, light touch neighbourhood plans, housing needs assessments and full Neighbourhood Plans – which have different purposes. The Council wants to support communities to have high quality, robust, up-to-date plans in place to inform any discussions around local development and investment.

Shropshire has an Asset Based Community Development (ABCD) approach to building community capacity and supporting social action and volunteering. Shropshire currently has levels of community capacity and involvement, social action and volunteering that other areas would be delighted to have. County wide and local voluntary groups and volunteers play a key role in the delivery of Shropshire’s social prescribing model, as many of the interventions that people are referred or signposted to are voluntary. The Council’s Adult Social Care Let’s Talk Local teams, and the GP based Community & Care Co-ordinators are equally reliant on these groups and their activities for their success. Additionally, 1100 volunteers work on Shropshire’s extensive network of footpaths, country parks and natural open spaces.

This situation is threatened by a number of factors. Changes to Shropshire’s demographics sees an increasingly older population that relies on a culture of elderly people looking after other elderly people; changes to society which could mean that the capacity people currently have in retirement to volunteer and be active in their communities could diminish; and a lack of financial investment in infrastructure support for the voluntary and community sector, which could result in organisations and charities being less robust, resilient and adaptable to cope with change and new ways of working.

The Council is developing and testing a number of innovative approaches that will build the resilience and capacity of individuals and communities. New approaches and a cultural change to support social action and volunteering are required that enable more people to be involved. The Tribe Project, a digital social action platform to create and respond to volunteer ‘jobs’ in the locality, is being piloted to connect people who have a need with someone who can help, and vice-versa. Tribe, also has the ability to enable the strategic mapping of ‘need’ which would inform the current and future service design and commissioning or community activity.