Dear Everyone,
You might know me as cantankerous Salopian farmer Silas Brown, campaigner for “best practice” to be imposed on artefact hunting by Parliament (just put “Silas” in the search box)  but today I’m on a different tack. As a proud Salopian I’d like everyone to know what’s happening in my county. Shropshire Council is determined to have a housing estate built alongside Oswestry Hill Fort and there are two things you ought to know about.


First, it has been suggested they haven’t been playing it with a straight bat. (See the latest allegations in the press. Have the public been “misled”?)

Second, it’s hard to think they are sincere in some of their statements. Like this recent one: “Shropshire Council does not accept that development of the site would result in substantial harm to the significance of the hillfort“. Anyone with eyes – including them – can see it will damage it. You might ask how they can claim what’s blatantly not true. I suppose it’s “the system” – there’s no way of measuring “damage” so if you’re a council or a developer you can say you think a development is harmless even though everyone, including you, knows you don’t mean it.)

Anyway, there’s to be a public hearing at 1.30pm on 16th December and we’ll see what the Inspector thinks. I’ll tell you what I think though. I think Shropshire has an unrivalled record of contributing to the world’s culture, being home to the world’s first skyscraper and iron bridge and the birthplace of the Modern Olympics, Charles Darwin and the Industrial Revolution. I hope it won’t add to that record the deliberate damaging of the setting of its foremost ancient monument!

Silas Brown,
Grunter’s Hollow,