South Oxfordshire District Council’s (SODC) Local Plan sets out how development will be planned and delivered across South Oxfordshire to 2033.
The recently released “Second Preferred Options” document, whilst a significant improvement over the original “Preferred Options” document published in June 2016, continues to include a proposal to build a strategic development of 3,000 homes on Chalgrove airfield, creating a town the size of Thame in the middle of pristine Oxfordshire countryside.
Meanwhile, the promoters of another site next to Junction 7 of the M40 (Harrington) are aggressively working to persuade SODC to include that site in the Local Plan. This would create a town of 6,500 houses in the heart of rural Oxfordshire.
Haseley Brook Action Group recognises the demand for more local housing, particularly to serve Oxford, but the Group is opposed to flawed development in the open countryside located many miles from critical infrastructure and jobs.
We believe that the Chalgrove Airfield and Harrington proposed sites would have significant negative implications for: A) the Environment; B) The Oxfordshire Economy; C) Employers in the Oxfordshire Knowledge Spine seeking to attract new employees to the area; D) potential new employees seeking suitable places to live; E) existing South Oxfordshire residents wanting to continue to enjoy living in the area; F) invaluable Oxfordshire heritage and G) irreplaceable Oxfordshire ecology.
SODC’s own highly detailed sustainability analyses indicate that the Chalgrove and Harrington sites have many more disadvantages and fewer advantages than the options availability closer to Oxford (Grenoble Road, Wick Farm, Thornhill and Lower Elsfield). These options have been discarded largely on the basis of them being inside the Oxford Green Belt, despite the fact that the Local Plan now includes major developments at three other green belt sites: Culham, Berinsfield and Wheatley Campus.
The Haseley Brook Action Group (HBAG) is a group of people that passionately believe that SODC’s decision on the Chalgrove Airfield development is ill-considered and will be likely to lead to irreparable damage to a precious part of Oxfordshire. Our mission is to change their mind, but we need your help. If you share our concern, select how you can help to see the different ways you can get involved.