WaGCG : Wantage and Grove Campaign Group
Wantage and Grove Campaign Group (WaGCG)

Planning News

Since the 2011 Census about 2,500 homes have been given full planning permission in OX12 and a further 4,750 have received outline planning permission. Another 450 are either included in the local plan or have applications being considered. So in total 7,700 homes are planned for OX12 on top of the 11,500 homes included in the census.
This is all before the District Council start their new Local Plan and bow to the pressure from Dandara to allow another 800 homes to be built between Wantage and Grove and East Challow in the hope that this funds the Western link Road from the Airplane to Haynes.

  • We were told by NHS England in 2012 that the extension to the Health Centre was imminent - still not even agreed funding.
  • Our hospital was still open to in-patients for rehabilitation and respite - still temporarily closed since 2016.
  • The Wantage Eastern Link Road was going to be finished by 2020 - not started yet but might be finished by 2022-2023.
  • An £18m new leisure centre would be built in Wantage by 2020 according Matthew Barber (Leader of the District Council) in 2017 - now cancelled.
  • New cycleways would be built joining Wantage and Grove to Harwell and Milton Park - still possible and work should start this month.
  • Grove Railway Station was included in the Network Rail plans in 2011 - now being considered for 2028-2030.
  • New Schools would be built on Grove Airfield quickly to take the pressure off King Alfreds and our existing primary schools - a primary school should open on Crab Hill later this year but those on Grove Airfield are still years away.
  • Bus services are limited and generally slow even though they block Wantage Market Place regularly. Getting to Didcot can't be done on public transport in less than 40 minutes and the last bus is 8.45pm unless you want to go via Abingdon so don't try to spend an evening at the Cinema or the Cornerstone.
  • Parking in Wantage is a nightmare - unless you want to park on a double yellow line - even then you will have difficulty finding a space. Moving from police responsibility for inforcement to civil enforcement is being considered and might happen by 2022. Then you won't be able to find a space anywhere and travelling by car to shop or work in Wantage will just be a joke.

Changes to GP Appointments

Both of our GP Surgeries are changing the way that you can make appointments. See our Local GP Services page for more details.

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What's the Future for OX12 Leisure Centre?

The District Council has just announced that they have formally agreed that all work on the proposed new leisure centre between Grove and Wantage will now come to an end, as they are unable to raise the £18.8 million the centre was expected to cost.
The project has been paused since September 2018 while they waited on confirmation from the government on its intentions for future council funding.

They are intending to develop and introduce a new Active Communities Strategy, which will identify ways of providing leisure activities in the heart of local communities both in Grove and Wantage and across the district.

So over the last 10 years nearly £6 million has been spent on the leisure facilities in Abingdon and about £176,000 has been spent on our existing leisure centre. Once again, no funding for OX12. What will happen to the contributions from developers towards leisure facilities? What has happened to the new homes bonus received for the housing built in OX12 so far?

We wait for further explanations...

What are we campaigning about?

Some 7,000 houses are in the pipeline for Wantage, Grove and the surrounding villages. More may soon follow as the new Council is thinking about the plan to 2050.

Government guidelines say that development should be "sustainable". We do not think it is sustainable to put thousands of houses where medical facilities are increasingly inadequate, schools are virtually above capacity, there is little employment in the area, and roads to where there is employment are unsuited to commuting.

We came together to campaign for a better deal for our area. As it says in our Aims:

We are not against any development in Wantage and Grove but:

  • Developments should be proportionate and sustainable
  • The infrastructure should enhance and improve quality of life for its residents

Oxfordshire Joint Spatial Strategy 2050

The consultation on the first stage, introducing the Oxfordshire Plan 2050, closed on 25 March 2019. For more details see our Oxfordshire 2050 Plan page.

The next consultation should take place in June/July 2020. See the new timetable on the Oxfordshire Plan website.

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