Your View Counts – Oxfordshire Plan Consultation due to launch 30th July


6th July 2021

CPRE Oxfordshire welcomes the Oxfordshire 2050 Plan public consultation, due to launch on 30th July: the views and needs of Oxfordshire’s people should be at the heart of the development and growth of the county.

The Oxfordshire Plan 2050 will define the development strategy for the county for the next three decades, including both the quality and quantity of housing and the broad locations for growth.

Helen Marshall, Director, CPRE Oxfordshire said: “We’ll be making a careful assessment of the growth figures outlined. Growth can bring benefits for Oxfordshire, but there are big risks from getting it wrong. The level of growth must not exceed the County’s capacity to absorb it, in terms of either infrastructure or harm to our rural environment.

In terms of location for growth, there is scope to increase numbers on sites already allocated in Local Plans but not yet built out. Consultation documents released yesterday provide a maximum housing number of 77,000, our calculations indicate that with proper densities this would not require any significant amount of land beyond that released already.

We could also expect large numbers of brownfield sites coming forward, especially given the changing retail environment which is likely to free up some central urban locations.

It’s absolutely critical that we get the views of Oxfordshire residents enshrined in this Plan, as this will be the best way to influence the Government’s top-down OxCam Arc agenda and prevent them imposing excessive central growth targets.”

CPRE Oxfordshire believes the County’s rural character should be the fundamental starting point from which decisions about the future development of the County should be made. This is not only because of its value in societal and environmental terms, but also its economic value in retaining and nurturing our educational and entrepreneurial assets. The consultation should be about an actual plan: reconciling the incompatible aims of climate change and environmental improvement with growth, however ‘Good’.

Consultation will run for 10 weeks from the 30th of July to 8th October 2021. Anyone wishing to respond during the consultation period can do so at via the Oxfordshiire Open Thought website.

Consultation documents have been published on the West Oxfordshire District Council website here.