Next Ward Focus Meeting announced

Our next Ward Focus Meeting for residents who live in Headington Ward will be on

Tuesday 31st October

Ruskin College Board Room, Dunstan Road, Old Headington OX3 9BZ

from 6:00-7:30 pm

Ward Focus meetings are run on a drop in and out basis and are free of charge. There is an open session where residents can raise issues of concern. There’s no need to book.

If you would like to contact your Lib Dem city councillors for advice on any issue please contact

Lime Walk result!

Thank you to all Lime Walk residents for making sure council jetters could access the whole of the highway last week. The deep clean even revealed this long undiscovered drain! Once it is cleared this should help with the rainwater drainage problems that have been happening.

Up and coming events in Oxford

  • Tuesday 3 to Sunday 8 October, The Chinese State Circus, Oxpens Rec, 4.45 pm to 9.30 pm. The internationally acclaimed, all human Chinese State Circus returns to the UK with their new programme ‘Dynasty’. www.chinesestatecircus.com
  • Wednesday 4 to Friday 6 and Monday 9 to Wednesday 11 October, Sukkah Booth,Broad Street (in front of Balliol College), 10 am to 7 pm. Celebration of the annual Jewish festival of booths, Sukkot. www.oxfordchabad.org
  • Friday, 6 October, Covered Market Outdoor Event, Market Street, 10 am to 6 pm. Our Covered Market traders and others will come out on Market Street with their stalls.
  • Friday 6 to Sunday 15 October, Dancin’ Oxford Family Dance Week, various locations and times. Fun dance events for all the family. www.dancinoxford.co.uk.
  • Sunday 8 October, Oxford Half Marathon, city centre and north of the city starting on Broad Street, 7.30 am to 4 pm. Oxford will welcome thousands of runners over race weekend for what promises to be a very special day. The Race Village will be in University Parks. www.oxfordhalf.co.uk
  • Wednesday 11 October, TOAST – Oxford Homeless Pathways Awareness Event, Bonn Square, 8 am to 6 pm. Raising awareness for Oxford Homeless Pathways and celebrating the Week of Toastwww.oxhop.org.uk
  • Thursday 12 October, Circus Starr, South Park, 4.45 pm to 8.45 pm. Annual all human family circus, giving children with disabilities and special needs the opportunity to experience live accessible arts. www.circus-starr.org.uk
  • Saturday 14 October, Chiltern League Cross Country Round 1, Horspath Sports Ground and Shotover Country Park, 7 am to 5 pm. Cross country running event for all age groups male and female, organised by Oxford City Athletics Club. www.oxfordcityac.com
  • Sunday 22 October, Cross Country Cuppers, South Park, 10 am to 2 pm. Annual cross country races with approximately 100 competitors in total. www.ouccc.org.uk

Parking permits in Gathorne Road: response to consultation

The owner of flats which obtained planning permission on condition that they were car-free has applied to have eligibility for Controlled Parking Zone permits restored for his tenants. This arises from a recent appeal case in which the planning inspector found in his favour.

A consultation has just finished on whether the Traffic Order for Headington Central CPZ should be altered to include eligibility for tenants in these flats for parking permits.

Altaf and Ruth have sent the following response as City Councillors for Headington Ward. The final decision on whether this change will be approved will be made by Cllr Yvonne Constance at her Cabinet Member Decision meeting on the 12th October at County Hall.

If the change is approved, there will be more local pressure on the planning authority to turn down applications in roads well-served by public transport due to insufficient space for parking or resultant harm to neighbour amenity from additional parking pressure.

Submission to consultation re change to Headington Central controlled parking zone order: Wingfield House (Flats 1-6)

As city councillors for Headington Ward, we are writing to object most strongly to the proposed changes to the (HEADINGTON CENTRAL) (CONTROLLED PARKING ZONE AND VARIOUS RESTRICTIONS) (VARIATION No. 32) ORDER 20 which seeks to restore the above Gathorne Road properties to full permit eligibility. We set out our concerns below.

  • We believe that the County Council should not be encouraging the use of cars in areas that are excellently served by frequent public transport, especially at a time when the Access to Headington project is facilitating better space for cyclists, and when concerns from our residents about air quality in the area are increasing. The advent of Rapid Transit buses will improve travel for Headington residents still further, and there is a successful car-share scheme currently in operation in the area.
  • Applications to intensify or change the use of flats and HMOs in this area have been permitted by the planning authority including councillors on East Area Planning Committee only on condition that these are car-free developments. Gathorne Road is close to excellent public transport routes in and out of Oxford, the airports and London.
  • There are currently only 18 dwellings in Gathorne Road; on-road parking spaces are already under pressure both from existing permit-holders, and from hospital and care workers seeking to access the Nuffield Orthopaedic Centre and a Gathorne Road property for tenants with special needs. The removal of some on-road parking spaces in Windmill Road as part of the Access to Headington scheme is likely to shift parking to adjoining residential roads including Gathorne Road. The restoration of permit eligibility to tenants in these six properties would reduce on-road parking availability for current Gathorne Road permit-holders, and potentially shift parking pressure to St Anne’s Road nearby, thus impacting negatively on permit-holders there too.
  • We are anxious that this proposed change arising from what we feel to have been a questionable inspector decision does not serve as a precedent for the Headington area, which contains a very large number of shared houses, HMOs and flats which have only received permission for build or change of use on condition that they are car-free. We recognise that it is most unusual for a local authority to challenge an appeal decision by a planning inspector, but we feel that the arguments for exempting these properties from eligibility for the CPZ are overwhelming.

We urge the Cabinet Member to oppose this change and ask her to continue to exempt these properties from full permit eligibility in the Headington Central CPZ.

Altaf-Khan and Ruth Wilkinson             29/09/17

Here is the submission from County Cllr Roz Smith, submitted 3/10/17

Submission to consultation re change to Headington Central controlled parking zone order: Wingfield House (Flats 1-6), Gathorne Road, Headington, Oxford

 

With advice from Oxfordshire County Council, Oxford City Council planning committee put a condition on this property that it should be exempt from parking permits, i.e. a car free development. The condition was sensible given the proximity of regular public transport, local services within easy walking distance, (GP, Dental, library, schools etc.) plus an active car sharing scheme.

The owner has now appealed this condition and it seems an ill-informed planning inspector found in his favour. This was a shock, given the pressure on the few residents parking spaces within Gathorne Road, nearby St Anne’s and Margaret Roads. If allowed, we could see as many as 12 more vehicles competing for the 18 spaces in Gathorne Road and the few spaces in surrounding area.

Many homes do not have off road parking and the Access to Headington project will see even more pressure when residential spaces in Windmill Road are removed. The detailed work around removal of parking spaces in Windmill Road undertaken by county officers with consultation with residents and local councillors will be undermined by allowing parking eligibility for the Wingfield House development.

The stated aim of Access to Headington is to encourage use of sustainable means of transport. If this change to the eligibility for parking permits is allowed then I envisaged a raft of appeals for changes to parking conditions within the City’s controlled parking zones.

I concur with my city councillor colleagues that if this change is approved then it will be more difficult for the local planning authority, (Oxford City Council), to turn down applications and for the County Council to further its aim of reducing the high volume of vehicle movements within the City.

I recognise it will be unusual, but not the first time, that a local authority to challenge an appeal decision by a planning inspector. However, I feel the arguments for exempting these properties from the eligibility for parking permits in the Headington CPZ are overwhelming and I urge the Cabinet member to continue the exemption for this development.

Cllr Roz Smith

County Councillor for Headington & Quarry

Ruskin planning application submitted

Three new planning applications this week – two on the same site at 142 Headley Way, and one by Ruskin for student accommodation. Please select Planning Applications from top menu for more details

If anyone is wondering why there are two applications for the same site in Headley Way, here is the response we received from the Planning Officer:

Yes there are two applications in. One is for a two storey 2 bedroom dwelling and one is for a single storey 1 bedroom dwelling as an alternative proposal. They would not be able to implement both, if allowed, as they are on the same footprint.

Shotover issues

We;ve been asked to investigate whether the council may wish to consider putting in more controls over the access into the main car parking area at Shotover where much of the fly-tipping takes place. We’ve also been asked whether it’s possible to narrow the entrance and put a bar to stop any trucks coming up, as that appears to have worked in other places and put more enforcement notices around.

We’ve contacted the City Council and have received this response.

The Plain is also access to the farms and Shotover estate so this would cause them issues. Also, most of the fly-tipping there is householder stuff rather than commercial so comes in transit vans and trailers which a height barrier wouldn’t stop anyway. 

 

Access to Headington: conflict of use of space at bus stops

Bus stops and crossings in new highways works are always tricky in terms of off-carriageway infrastructure for pedestrians and cyclists as they are inherently points where desire line cross.

We asked the County Council about the possible conflict between bus passengers alighting and passing cyclists near the bus stops in the Slade. Here is the response we received:

The areas outside the bus stops and crossings are shared space rather than cycle lane/pedestrian lane so both users share priority.  The appropriate signage and markings will be in place in order to remind users of the change in priority.

Continuation of temporary traffic order in Lime Walk

We have been sent the following text of the temporary traffic order which takes effect from 2nd October. We have requested that Bickerton Road is considered as well as Stapleton Road as an alternative diversion route to Old Road for traffic from Lime Walk with support from the Chair of Highfield Residents’ Association.

This Order is a continuation of the Notice that came into force on the 11 September 2017 to cover the full duration of the works.  There are no changes to the restrictions.

In the interests of public safety it will be necessary for Oxfordshire County Council to temporality introduce the following to facilitate carriageway works:

  • No access into Old Road from Lime Walk (no access at the junction).  Access maintained one-way for vehicles travelling northwards into Lime Walk from Old Road.
  • Parking Prohibited for 40 metres from Old Road on the west side (includes  approx. 5 spaces of the 8am – 6:30pm 2hour parking bays).

A Temporary Traffic Regulation Order (TTRO) is being made to implement the temporary restrictions and will operate from the 2 October 2017 till the 13 January 2018.

(The maximum duration of a TTRO on a road is 18 months and on a footpath is 6 months, or until completion of the works, whichever is the earlier.)

Notice of intention to make the Order will be published in the local press.

Here are the two documents pertaining to this notice.

Notice of proposal to change parking in Latimer Road

The County Council has given notice of proposals to amend the traffic regulation order for parking in Latimer Road pursuant to the conditions given to planning consent for the Beech House development and adjacent maisonettes.

Here is the map of what is proposed. Comments must be directed to

Traffic and Road Safety Team (Ref.MR) for Director for Communities, Oxfordshire County Council, County Hall, Oxford, OX1 1ND

by the 29th September