A plan to build a retirement property out of shipping containers behind a Shropshire pub has been thrown out by council planners.

Shropshire Council said the scheme, which would have seen the two-storey property constructed on land between the Kings Head Pub and Auction Yard in Bishop’s Castle, would have been “cramped and incongruous”.

Applicant Lee White, who is the landlord of the pub, said the “sustainable” two bedroomed house would replace three camping pods and a shower and toilet block, currently used for short term holiday bookings.

“The landlord of the Kings Head is wanting to retire and wishes to retain ownership of the pub. As the pods have proved unviable financially it makes sense to use the land to provide a home for himself when he decides to relinquish his day to day control of the business,” said architect Jonathan Greig, in a supporting planning statement.


“The building will be constructed from second hand shipping containers which offer a sustainable solution that will have a minimal disturbance to the ground and will be clad with recycled plastic cladding. The colours available change as supplies vary but the intention is to use an oak or similar finish,”

“While the scheme may appear rather dense on the site, it is within the Bishops Castle Conservation Area. It will be a continuation of the development of this area of Bishops Castle, infilling a gap in the recent development of the new affordable houses for Bishops Castle Land Trust and the public house buildings. It will contribute to the diversity shown throughout the town.”

County Times: The Kings HeadThe Kings Head

But Shropshire Council’s planning officers took a different view, saying the “boxy form” and “overtly functional materials” would have a detrimental effect on the Grade II listed pub building it backs on to.

They also expressed concern about the connection of the property to mains sewerage, which they say could have a harmful effect on the River Clun Special Area of Conservation due to enhanced phosphate and nitrate levels downstream.

“The location is sensitive given its conservation area designation and proximity to the listed pub,” said a report from council planning case officer Tystan Williams.

“It is considered that the dwelling’s design, footprint and overall scale and massing would be inappropriate in this context, appearing cramped and constituting overdevelopment of the site.

“In its current form the scheme would harm the setting of the listed building and the character and appearance of the wider conservation area,” it added.