After months of work by Forum members we now have 24 draft Policies that we hope reflect the major concerns of our community. Read them on the MCNP website here.
You need to know that there are many constraints on what we can say in neighbourhood plan policies, and on how they are written. We have to work within the the existing statutory framework at national level: we cannot oppose “sustainable development”. We must also comply with Cherwell’s Local Plan 2011-2031, and we have already received advice on adjustments that needed to be made. Nevetherless, the policies as drafted address many of the important issues. Some others, that do not comply, have been moved to our non-statutory Community Action Plan.
Once we have feedback from the community, there may be more changes to the Policies, in the run-up to formal submission of the Neighbourhood Plan. So please let us know what you think.
Leaflets are being distributed to every address in the 11 parishes of our Neighbourhood area. They invite you to attend one of nine local meetings in January, where you will be able to see and discuss the details of the draft Neighbourhood Plan. We look forward to seeing you at one of these meetings:
- Saturday, 14th January, 14:00-16:00, Reading Room, Upper Heyford
- Sunday, 22nd January, 10:00-12:00, Village Hall, Ardley
- Tuesday 24th January, 19:30-21:00, Village Hall, Steeple Aston
- Wednesday, 25th January 19:00-21:00, Nicholson Orchard Barn, North Aston
- Thursday 26th January, 19:00-20:30, Village Hall, Somerton
- Saturday, 28th January, 10:00-12:00, St. Mary’s Church, Lower Heyford
- Saturday, 28th January, 10:00-13:00 at Heyford Park Community Centre
- Saturday, 28th January, 15:00-17:00, Village Hall, Kirtlington
- Monday, 30th January, 19:30-21:00, Village Hall, Fritwell
PLEASE PUT ONE IN YOUR DIARY NOW!
October’s Update focused on housing. We had news of consultation on Oxford’s overspill, and updates on projects in Fritwell and Deddington. Here’s the latest news on each of those developments
Work has started on David Wilson Homes site at Deddington, where 85 houses are being built. A repeat application by the developers to extend this to 99 houses was again refused by Cherwell DC at its Planning Committee on 24th November.
As we reported previously, Cherwell planners issued a district-wide invitation for suggestions for sites on which houses could be built to assist with Oxford’s “unmet housing need”.
The responses are now in, and Cherwell have published all the sites submitted with a minimum size of 2 hectares (to accommodate up to 100 homes). These are now up for consultation. Over 200 submissions were made, capable of accommodating many more houses than the 4,400 that Cherwell plan to take.
Three sites have been suggested for Steeple Aston,
all on the western side of the village. Two further sites have been suggested for Middle Aston, and there are more sites proposed at Ardley, Kirtlington, Upper Heyford and Heyford Park. The “Great Heyford” land at Lower Heyford is also on the list.
In their consultation paper, Cherwell have divided the District into nine separate areas (A – I). “A” is most suitable and “I” is least suitable. In our neighbourhood plan area, Steeple Aston, Middle Aston and Kirtlington are “I”, while Upper Heyford and Lower Heyford are “F” and Ardley is G.
The consultation is open until January 9th 2017. You can see all the detail of the sites at www.cherwell.gov.uk
and go to Planning Policy – Public Consultation
Fritwell Scheme Withdrawn
The planning application from CALA Homes for 34 new houses in Fritwell has been withdrawn following objections from the Parish Council, many local residents, and from ourselves – the Mid-Cherwell Neighbourhood Plan Forum. We hope that the scheme will be resubmitted with a mix of house sizes that is more suited to the needs of the local community.
What happens next?
We are now at the stage where our draft policies are public and ready for discussion at the January engagement meetings, so that you and others in the community can confirm (or otherwise) that we are still on the right track. Final submission of the Plan is now proposed for April 2017, with the Referendum in the late summer.
Bloxham’s Neighbourhood Plan has recently achieved a 97% yes vote. We’re aiming for the same result.