The Annual General Meeting of the Wantage and Grove Campaign Group took place via Zoom on Wednesday, 28th April 2021. The report from our Campaign Manager is available HERE
Planning for sustainable growth in the Oxford-Cambridge Arc
On 18 March 2021 the Government announced that the plans for an Oxford-Cambridge Expressway have been cancelled.
“… extensive analysis and local engagement reveals the expressway would not be cost-effective for the taxpayer…”
The Transport Secretary will look to alternative plans for improving transport in the region.
They haven't decided to remove the aim to build a million new homes in the Ox-Cam Arc.
In February 2021 the Government released a policy paper which sets out the government’s planned approach to developing the Oxford-Cambridge Arc Spatial Framework, including a timeline for delivery, its high level scope, and how they will work with local partners.
For details see our Oxford-Cambridge Arc page.
What's the Future for Leisure Improvements in OX12?
Following the cancellation of plans for a new Leisure Centre in Wantage and Grove, the District Council is now working out how to spend more than £6 million of developer contributions on leisure facilities in our area.
In February 2021 the District Council had said that they would be contacting community groups and sporting organisations in Wantage, Grove and Faringdon to help to identify how more than £6 million of developer contributions will be spent. The latest press release on the subject (March 22, 2021) says that
"local sports clubs in the Grove and Wantage area are helping Vale of White Horse District Council understand how money that’s coming in from new housing developments could be used to help provide appropriate new or improved leisure facilities for local residents."
"The clubs, along with their local town and parish councils and district councillors, are being asked to provide initial views on whether their current facilities – like sports pitches and courts – will be suitable for the forthcoming increase in population locally, or if they think they will need to improve existing facilities or build new ones."
So if you are a member of a sports club and would like to add ideas, then please check to see if your club has been contacted. If not then contact the Town Council or Grove Parish Council and feed in your ideas - copy us in to your conversation so that we can help.
Wantage Neighbourhood Plan
Wantage Neighbourhood Plan was first drafted in 2014/15, with the help of the Campaign Group but was rejected by a planning inspector in 2016.
According to the Town Council website the "updated draft Wantage Neighbourhood Plan published in November 2020 is undergoing further amendment in response to input from the survey that closed on 15 January and from the District Council Planning Department. The next version of the Plan will be published in early March." I guess they are a little behind!
See also our comments.
There is an application from Persimmon to build at least 531 (possibly up to 700) homes between the northern edge of the Grove Airfield development and the Denchworth Road. For details see our Grove Airfield Expansion page.
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 the quality of life for its residents
For the most up-to-date information please see our newsletters
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