Local Plan examination set to resume

A Government planning inspector will return to Cherwell District Council next week to resume his scrutiny of the document outlining where to build 22,800 homes by 2031.

In June this year inspector Nigel Payne halted the examination into Cherwell’s submitted Local Plan to allow the council to amend the document to accommodate revised housing targets.

The plan, which outlines the council’s preferred sites for housing and employment, has since been amended to incorporate the provision of 22,800 homes and 234.5 hectares of employment space between 2011 and 2031.

Cllr Michael Gibbard, lead member for planning, said: “Our officers have worked incredibly hard over the past six months to meet the housing targets which were identified in Oxfordshire’s 2014 Strategic Housing Market Assessment (SHMA) which was published following the submission of the Local Plan. Although the principles and strategy remain the same, the draft plan which is being put before Mr Payne next week will be significantly different from what he saw in June.

“Most notably, the original plan looked at delivering 16,750 homes and 155 hectares of employment land between 2006 and 2031. This has now been changed so that the plan now refers to the provision of 22,800 homes and 234.5 hectares of commercial space between 2011 and 2031. In meeting these targets we are confident the plan will be approved by Mr Payne to give Cherwell a clear plan to guide future development and provide a robust defence against future, sporadic housing developments.”

The examination will resume on Tuesday, 9 December and will involve Mr Payne testing the ‘soundness’ of the plan as an appropriate framework to guide the growth of the district until 2031. Over the course of the two week hearing, Mr Payne will hear from council officers and interested parties and consider how the council has engaged with stakeholders, including neighbouring authorities such as Oxfordshire County Council and its highways department, English Nature and partners such as town and parish councils.

The plan was suspended in June following the publication of Oxfordshire’s Strategic Housing Market Assessment (SMHA) which was released after the initial plan had been submitted to Government for consideration.

In amending the plan to meet the new targets, officers revisited 200 sites which had previously been discounted and reviewed an additional 300 which had been suggested by developers and landowners.  Subsequently, the revised document has proposed 7,319 homes for Banbury; 10,129 homes in Bicester and 5,392 to be built across Kidlington and rural areas. And an additional 1,600 homes are proposed at Former RAF Upper Heyford.

In order to accommodate the additional houses, the amount of land dedicated to employment has also been increased from 33 hectares to 96 hectares in Banbury and from 122 hectares to 138.5 hectares in Bicester.

Bicester is becoming a hot bed for new and existing businesses that want to grow.

“Bicester is becoming a hot bed for new and existing businesses that want to grow. We’ve got a great location, excellent business networks and access to high quality investment opportunities.”
2016-09-24T12:44:28+01:00
“Bicester is becoming a hot bed for new and existing businesses that want to grow. We’ve got a great location, excellent business networks and access to high quality investment opportunities.”

Membership of Bicester Vision has provided the best possible conduit for the military

"Membership of Bicester Vision has provided the best possible conduit for the military to both understand and contribute towards the development and Bicester Town"
2016-12-06T14:46:03+01:00
"Membership of Bicester Vision has provided the best possible conduit for the military to both understand and contribute towards the development and Bicester Town"

Being a member enables us to build a close understanding of the needs of local businesses

“Chiltern Railways provides fast, frequent train services from Bicester North station and the newly opened Bicester Village station to London, Birmingham, Oxford and key locations in between.  Being a member of Bicester Vision enables us to build a close understanding of the needs of local businesses and helps us to shape our future growth strategy.”

Stephen Barker, Chiltern Railways
2016-12-07T09:04:34+01:00
“Chiltern Railways provides fast, frequent train services from Bicester North station and the newly opened Bicester Village station to London, Birmingham, Oxford and key locations in between.  Being a member of Bicester Vision enables us to build a close understanding of the needs of local businesses and helps us to shape our future growth strategy.”Stephen Barker, Chiltern Railways

We have a profound interest in the progress of the Town

“The Bicester Chamber of Commerce and Bicester Vision have a profound interest in the progress of the Town and understand that in some circumstances the continual increase in the numbers of houses and businesses will cause disquiet, to individuals and existing business alike. Change is always with us, and both the “Chamber” and “Vision” endeavour to keep the standards from the past while facing, and working, with the challenges of the future.”

Peter Cox, Chairman of Bicester Chamber
2016-12-07T09:07:17+01:00
“The Bicester Chamber of Commerce and Bicester Vision have a profound interest in the progress of the Town and understand that in some circumstances the continual increase in the numbers of houses and businesses will cause disquiet, to individuals and existing business alike. Change is always with us, and both the “Chamber” and “Vision” endeavour to keep the standards from the past while facing, and working, with the challenges of the future.”Peter Cox, Chairman of Bicester Chamber

The primary objective for Bicester Vision is to provide opportunities for job creation

"The primary objective for Bicester Vision is to provide opportunities for job creation and this supports a key commitment within our Local Plan to deliver employment in line with housing. As a designated Garden Town, Bicester is expanding at the pace so it is essential to attract the inward investment and businesses who will be vital to this success. Through our membership with Bicester Vision, we can work with partners and existing businesses to access to additional channels, resources and innovative ideas to help us to achieve our goal as a district of opportunity and employment."

Karen Curtin, Commercial Director (Bicester) , Cherwell District Council
2016-12-07T09:10:34+01:00
"The primary objective for Bicester Vision is to provide opportunities for job creation and this supports a key commitment within our Local Plan to deliver employment in line with housing. As a designated Garden Town, Bicester is expanding at the pace so it is essential to attract the inward investment and businesses who will be vital to this success. Through our membership with Bicester Vision, we can work with partners and existing businesses to access to additional channels, resources and innovative ideas to help us to achieve our goal as a district of opportunity and employment."Karen Curtin, Commercial Director (Bicester) , Cherwell District Council

The County Council is a key partner in delivering infrastructure for housing and employment growth in Bicester

"The County Council is a key partner in delivering infrastructure for housing and employment growth in Bicester.  Essential to that is the close working across all tiers of government and the private sector to enable all Bicester businesses to prosper and create job opportunities for the community.  The Council has been a founding member and has seen the work of the partnership play an active role in shaping a flourishing Bicester."

Lisa Michelson, Locality Manager , Oxfordshire County Council
2016-12-07T09:30:32+01:00
"The County Council is a key partner in delivering infrastructure for housing and employment growth in Bicester.  Essential to that is the close working across all tiers of government and the private sector to enable all Bicester businesses to prosper and create job opportunities for the community.  The Council has been a founding member and has seen the work of the partnership play an active role in shaping a flourishing Bicester."Lisa Michelson, Locality Manager , Oxfordshire County Council

Bicester Town Council has been part of Bicester Vision since its inception

"Bicester Town Council has been part of Bicester Vision since its inception and are pleased to be able to work alongside the  business community and all tiers of local government to make Bicester the ‘go to’ place for business opportunity."

Sue Mackrell, Bicester Town Council
2016-12-07T09:44:43+01:00
"Bicester Town Council has been part of Bicester Vision since its inception and are pleased to be able to work alongside the  business community and all tiers of local government to make Bicester the ‘go to’ place for business opportunity."Sue Mackrell, Bicester Town Council

Through our work with Bicester Vision we are able identify the development needs of the town

“Ziran Land and its predecessor Stockdale Land has found that working closely with the business community of Bicester has enabled us to successfully develop Pioneer Square Shopping Centre and now to develop Franklin House, which was completed in 2016.  The growth of Bicester enables us, through our work with Bicester Vision, to identify the business, retail and leisure development needs of the town and to work closely with the business community to provide these.”

John Liggins, Managing Director, Ziran Land Limited
2016-12-07T09:47:00+01:00
“Ziran Land and its predecessor Stockdale Land has found that working closely with the business community of Bicester has enabled us to successfully develop Pioneer Square Shopping Centre and now to develop Franklin House...”

Bicester Vision is an effective way for interested parties to collaborate

"Bicester Vision is an effective way for interested parties to collaborate. We have recently worked with Lisa Rawlings at Banbury and Bicester College as being an industry partner for Bicester Technology studio school and supporting them on the curriculum, equipment specification, and funding. As well as facilitating other 3rd Party Logistics firms like DHL to be involved, Solar panel contact via the Low Carbon Hub to support on the building design for sustainable construction."

Steve Thornton, Director UK Logistics & Supply Chain, BRITA UK
2016-12-07T09:49:31+01:00
"Bicester Vision is an effective way for interested parties to collaborate. We have recently worked with Lisa Rawlings at Banbury and Bicester College as being an industry partner for Bicester Technology studio school and supporting them on the curriculum, equipment specification, and funding. As well as facilitating other 3rd Party Logistics firms like DHL to be involved, Solar panel contact via the Low Carbon Hub to support on the building design for sustainable construction."Steve Thornton, Director UK Logistics & Supply Chain, BRITA UK