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

Newsletter 7 September 2022

Dear [Forename]

Summer is over (for now at least - we make get an Indian Summer later). We've already had almost as much rain in September as we have had in the previous three months! So hopefully the hosepipe ban will be irrelevant as our gardens and cars are getting enough rain.

Last month, I mentioned that the Lidl Application would be discussed at a planning meeting on 17 August - it was and the committee recommended the application for approval. You can watch the meeting on youtube if you want to hear the discussion - it's available here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nqXdAHbSt60 Now the officers just have to agree the legal agreement with Lidl and construction can start. I'm sure that construction will probably coincide with the work on the roundabout so expect lots of temporary traffic lights again.

It was the Grove Airfield Forum meeting last week and Persimmon reported that the 'temporary football pitch' had finally been approved but it seems that it will be the end of the year before it can be used for football - only 3 years late! They do seem to be VERY BAD at delivering the facilities that they have promised in a timely manner.
This pitch was due by the time that 50 homes had been delivered - that was 2019.
They have now almost 500 homes occupied (probably by the end of this year) and should have delivered more football pitches, allotments, about 5 hectares of open space and a primary school by then. They have started work on the Primary School and it should open next September with a reception class but the applications for all the other facilities haven't even been submitted yet.
I did remind them of their responsibilities at the meeting but it seems to be water off a ducks back. I asked the Vale Officers if they can do anything but it would involve taking Persimmon to Court and given the costs and problems with the Courts at the moment, that won't happen. I asked the Officers if they could defer approval of the next housing applications until the facilities had been delivered but that's against the law so Persimmon will just continue to get away with delaying things and we will continue to remind them of their responsibilities.

The County have launched a consultation about a Zebra Crossing and double yellow lines on Charlton Village Road (outside Charlton Primary School) and more double yellow lines on Springfield Road and Mary Shunn Way - you can comment until 31 September at https://letstalk.oxfordshire.gov.uk/ You do have register if you haven't before and can then look for the correct consultation in the Highways section. I don't know why these areas are more important than the other schools in Wantage - particularly Fitzwaryn as the Denchworth Road will be much busier when the Wantage Eastern Relief Road is completed and make the existing crossing even more dangerous. A pelican crossing there (with traffic lights) will be essential but there is no commitment from any Council yet.

You will probably know that work has started on the Health Centre expansion. The construction is taking up a lot of space and the road around the Health Centre is now one-way (turn left as you enter the site). The access to the surgeries etc. is a temporary entrance on the Church Street side.

We are keeping up the pressure on the NHS to resolve the problems with Wantage Community Hospital but the in-patient facilities remain 'temporarily' closed and the maternity team are unable to use the hospital for births.

The consultation on Wantage pedestrianisation has finished and contributions should be being evaluated. The project team will then report back on key outcomes. We have no information about any decision date or when the report on the consultation published.

The Campaign Group is trying to widen it's membership so will be delivering a leaflet to every home in Wantage and Grove and as many of the villages in OX12 as we have energy to walk round. If you or any of your family can help to delivery to homes in your neighbourhood, please get in touch - we would love some help. Thank you.

Otherwise this is mainly no news.

  • No decision has yet been made about the steps in the Snicket between the Bovis development on King Alfred's East Site and Charlton Road see P21/V3349/FUL.
  • The 'temporary' football pitches on Grove Airfield which should have been completed before 50 homes were occupied P20/V1014/RM has now been approved but still haven't been handed over.

Applications have been submitted but not decided for:

  • Grove Airfield Parcel P4 - 197 more residential units with associated landscaping and infrastructure works.P22/V0086/RM
  • Phase 5 North East Parcel Crab Hill application for the construction of 145 dwellings with associated car parking, landscaping and highways infrastructure, in relation to area to the North East of the Primary School.P22/V1910/RM
  • Parcel 6 Former Grove Airfield Grove application for the erection of 59 residential units. P22/V1732/RM
  • Monks Farm - 83 dwellings (Phase 1B) P21/V3516/RM
  • Land at Ashfields Lane and A338 East Hanney - latest update was for 45 homes P21/V0376/FUL

Outline applications for new developments submitted but not decided include:

  • P20/V3113/O Land North/West of Grove Airfield - Residential development of up to 700 homes.

Finally roadworks - don't forget that you can check for any road works which may delay your journey at https://one.network/

Thanks for reading.

Best wishes

Julie Mabberley
Campaign Manager

Wantage and Grove Campaign Group


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