‘Colleges’ greed puts Green Belt and City at risk’ says CPRE


26th January 2017

The Oxford Green Belt is under unprecedented attack all around the City warns CPRE.

More than 17,000 houses on seventeen separate sites are being put forward by landowners and developers, including Oxford City Council, Oxford University and several Colleges, to be built on the Green Belt in the next fourteen years.

Many of the largest housing developments proposed on the Oxford Green Belt are on land owned by Oxford University and the Colleges, including:

  • 3,500 houses at Grenoble Road to the south east of the city on land owned by Magdalen College and Oxford City Council;
  • 2,200 houses between Oxford and Kidlington on land owned by Christ Church, Exeter College, Merton College and Oxford University Press;
  • 2,200 houses at Wick Farm, north west of Barton, near the village of Elsfield on land owned partly by Christ Church;
  • 1,650 houses on land at Begbroke on land owned by Oxford University and Magdalen College; and
  • 2,000 houses to the south east of Oxford, next to Garsington on land owned by Brasenose College.

This is just the tip of iceberg: the first tranche of sites being put forward by landowners and developers not wanting to miss out on the financial bonanza which planning permissions would provide. The Oxfordshire Growth Board is already talking about another ten sites in the Green Belt which could accommodate another 11,879 houses in the not too distant future, while Cherwell alone has about 30 Green Belt sites proposed by developers.

Helen Marshall, Director of CPRE Oxfordshire said: “We need to stop this gravy train before it leaves the station. These attacks on the Oxford Green Belt are unprecedented in the history of our Green Belt, which is designed specifically to protect our historic City from urban sprawl of this kind.”

CPRE calls on the Oxford Colleges and all other landowners seeking to profit from inflicting damage on the environment, Green Belt and the historic City to think again.

We urge the public to write to the University and Oxford Colleges demanding that they put the protection of the Green Belt and the City before their own profit.

See below CPRE Oxfordshire’s Press Release (26 January) and Map of the threats to the Oxford Green Belt.

Support CPRE’s Campaign to Save the Oxford Green Belt and Protect the Historic City of Oxford.


CPRE Oxfordshire, 26 January