News Archive


SODC Local Plan 2034 – Land North of Bayswater Brook (LNBB)

SODC Councillors Visit to LNBB: On Saturday 27 July, Sue Cooper (Leader of SODC) and Sarah Gray (SODC Councillor for Forest Hill & Holton) visited LNBB. Walking from Barton Community Centre, along Bayswater Road north to the footpath which runs west to the Sydlings Copse-Barton footpath, with residents from Barton, Elsfield and Sandhills, they were able to see for themselves the extent of the proposed development within the Green Belt and its proximity to Barton itself and the SSSI at Sydlings Copse. The 2 councillors then visited Sandhills. It was a most useful visit to both locations and we thank them for their time.

Sue Cooper stated that SODC won’t be making any serious decisions on LP2034 until September and much will depend on the inspectors and their final decision on the numbers put forward by the City Council for Oxford’s unmet housing need; she repeated several times that this (Oxford’s unmet housing need) is the key determinant of what will or won’t be up for grabs in the Green Belt strategic allocations around the city. (30 Jul-19) See News Archive for previous reports on this topic.

SODC Local Plan 2034 – Meeting 18 July Outcome: The SODC Cabinet had a somewhat confusing proposal to put to the meeting which was not Option 4 (to withdraw the plan and start the whole plan-making process from the beginning); instead they voted for an amended version of Option 3  which is understood to be –  to withdraw the plan temporarily, consult in September with the County Council and Inspectors,  revise it, and then resubmit the revised plan following an additional public consultation.

Residents of Barton, Sandhills and Elsfield have invited SODC councillors to come and visit our area in the Green Belt – LNBB as soon as possible before they re-submit the plan. It is proposed this will happen on Saturday 27th July, however we will let you know the details if this takes place in due course! (22 Jul-19).

SODC Local Plan 2034 – Update!: With the change of councillors in SODC after the recent local elections, the new Lib-Dem and Green leaders of SODC are reviewing the Local Plan 2034. On Thursday 18 July there will be a full meeting of the Council to pass a resolution about changes to it. See

Sandhills residents have been emailed to request them to write to SODC local councillors prior to 18th July to encourage them to vote for Options 3 or 4. For those persons wanting to respond and not on our email list, see email and supporting documents: Notes and Inspectors’ report on OCC Local Plan 2036. The more residents who respond the better! (23 Jun-19).

Planning Application Update (19 May 2019) : You will have noted that the application below did not include the Bayswater Farm Field – it has transpired that the field is not owned by Christ Church but still remains in the ownership of the Buswell Partnership. In addition, with the recent local elections, South Oxfordshire District Council has changed leadership to Sue Cooper (Lib Dems) so we need to wait to see if there will be any changes to the Local Plan 2034 which might affect building on LNBB.

Planning Application: On 3rd April Christ Church and Dorchester Residential Management submitted a planning application to build 1,100 homes on land north of Bayswater Brook (LNBB). This follows the publication of South Oxfordshire District Council’s Local Plan 2034 in which a number of different locations in Oxfordshire were identified as possible sites for new builds. The residents of Sandhills sent several hundred Representation Forms in response to the proposal for building on LNBB. A public petition has now been started to request Christ Church to withdraw this planning application – the petition can be found here.

Other News

CONSULTATION – A40 London Road (Oxford) Proposed Prohibition of Vehicles: Oxfordshire County Council are proposing to introduce a “No Right Turn” prohibition (i.e. only left turns permitted) for traffic entering the A40 London Road from the ‘Neilson’ site. This is a traffic safety measure associated with the development of the previous ‘Neilson` site for residential accommodation. The existing ‘gap’ in the central reservation between the east & westbound carriageways west of Thornhill Park & Ride, will be permanently closed for public safety. Consultation closes Friday 19th April. See here for more information. Update – 13 May: The Parish Council has sent this response to Oxfordshire County Council.

Barton Underpass Art Project: A public consultation is taking place until the end of August 2019 to determine what local residents would like to see included in the mural that is planned to be painted on the underpass between Barton and Headington . Use the  Questionnaire to let Katy Cockram, Neighbourhood Watch Area Coordinator for Barton, Risinghurst and Sandhills know your views.

Controlled Parking Zones

Controlled Parking Zones (CPZ) – Update 26 April: The  Oxfordshire County Council Cabinet Member for the Environment (including Transport) agreed on 25 April 2019 to include Sandhills in the list of 9 areas where Highways would ‘carry out scheme development and formal consultation’. Sandhills was included because Highways need to undertake a parking survey in the winter months to more accurately know the number of cars displaced from the Park & Ride. 

The timetable is currently: 

  • May 2019 – March 2020 – scheme design and formal consultation
  • Winter 2019 – Summer 2021 – account set-up and scheme implementation. 

Risinghurst will be kept under review but no further work will be carried out at this stage.

Controlled Parking Zones (CPZ): Oxfordshire County Council is currently reviewing the introduction of CPZ’s in different areas of the city. Before Christmas, informal consultations were undertaken in both Risinghurst and Sandhills resulting in both areas voting against the introduction of a CPZ. A meeting is due on 25 April to discuss the latest situation – more details can be obtained here. If you are particularly concerned about this issue, please contact Glynis Phillips (our local Oxon county councillor).


Here is an article, written by Paul Morris from Risinghurst, on hedgehogs and what we might do to help them survive the winter and beyond.