fbpx

Extra care homes for Chipping Norton supported by Growth Deal

A planning application for an extra care housing scheme in West Oxfordshire supported by £2.9 million of funding from the Oxfordshire Housing & Growth Deal, has been approved, subject to conditions.

The new scheme, to be built in Rockhill, Chipping Norton, will comprise of 80 extra care homes – 40 one-bed and 40 two-bed apartments – designed to meet the needs of older people. It will offer a number of communal facilities including gardens, a dining area, lounges and hobby/activity areas.

Some of the apartments will be let at affordable rents and others will be available for shared ownership.

Priority will be given to people who have a local connection to Chipping Norton and the surrounding area, then cascade to the whole District.

Extra care housing enables older people with care and support needs to live independently in self-contained accommodation.

A care team will be available on site 24 hours a day, catering for people with a range of needs from low care needs to high care needs. There will also be the flexibility to adjust the amount of care given, as people’s needs change over time.

Cllr Jeff Haine, Cabinet Member for Strategic Housing and Development, West Oxfordshire District Council, said: “As people are living longer, their care needs are growing. This scheme will allow many older people to continue to live independently, having any support they need on hand. This scheme will also allow them to stay involved with the local community that they have lived in for many years.”

The scheme will be developed by specialist provider Housing and Care 21.

West Oxfordshire District Council is contributing additional funding of £300,000.

Oxfordshire Plan 2050 will shape future of county with help from residents

Oxfordshire residents will have the opportunity to shape the long-term future of the county with the launch of a major public consultation to develop the Oxfordshire Plan 2050, backed by the six local authorities.

As part of the £215m Housing & Growth Deal secured by the Oxfordshire Growth Board from the Government, the spatial plan will set out the county’s future for the next 30 years.

It will consider what makes Oxfordshire great and look to preserve these qualities, while helping address some of the challenges facing us and secure a better future for our children and grandchildren.

Through consultation with different stakeholder groups and the public, we will listen to what is important to our residents and their families, what aspirations they have for the future and plan for the best way to deliver a better quality of life for all, be it rural, urban or market town communities.

Today (18 December 2018) a briefing on the Oxfordshire Plan 2050 is being held for a broad group of Oxfordshire stakeholders, including business and transport representatives, and community, heritage and environment groups. Full public consultation will follow in early 2019.

Councillor James Mills

Councillor James Mills, leader of West Oxfordshire District Council and Chair of the Oxfordshire Plan Member Sub-Group of the Growth Board, said:

“We need to think long-term about how we are going to provide the new homes we will need, the new jobs and workplaces for careers to prosper, the schools for our children and grandchildren, the facilities to maintain the health and wellbeing of the county, and the transport networks to keep us connected.

“The Oxfordshire Plan 2050 will set out how best to deliver this, and residents will be at the heart of the conversation.

“We want a plan that helps improve everyone’s quality of life – no matter where they live.”

We have produced a video that explains what the Plan is, why it’s important and how people can get involved.

We’re also launching our website www.oxfordshireplan.org this week. It will have the latest news, frequently asked questions and lots more information.

Over the coming months we’ll be holding public consultation events, sending out updates in newsletters, engaging online and through social media, and talking directly to residents so they are kept up-to-date with the Oxfordshire Plan 2050, they can have their say and we can answer any questions they may have.

These conversations will help shape the final plan, which will incorporate each authority’s Local Plan for the period up to between 2031 and 2036, and then look beyond them until 2050. It will not allocate specific sites for housing but instead look at areas best suited to help accommodate sustainable growth.

Cllr Mills added:

“We want to make sure our residents have the right information to give their considered views on what is important to them now and for future generations.

“We need to recognise the challenges facing us from housing need and transport problems to creating jobs and maintaining a strong economy. The Oxfordshire Plan 2050 is our opportunity to decide how best to tackle these.

“We do not want growth at all costs – instead we want to be aspirational about our future and plan for inclusive growth that meets those aims in a way that respects Oxfordshire’s unique assets.”

In 2014 the Oxfordshire councils received evidence for the need of an additional 100,000 homes by 2031, which has been considered as part of each authority’s plan making. The Oxfordshire Plan will support the current local plans and consider future housing needs using the new national planning guidance, which does not contain any set Government housing targets that need to be met.

The Plan will be subject to a rigorous independent strategic environmental assessment, and considered by each council before being submitted for examination by the Planning Inspectorate.

It will then go before each of the district councils and city council, who will consider voting to adopt the Plan.

Cllr Mills added:

“We’re one of very few areas in the country who are benefitting from a joint spatial plan, as part of the £215m Housing & Growth Deal from the Government secured by the Oxfordshire Growth Board.

“The money is not only being used to enable infrastructure projects that will unlock planned housing and provide new affordable homes, but is also unlocking future funding.

“This means as much as £500m could be invested in infrastructure, including social infrastructure – ensuring access to good schools and GP surgeries are at the heart of any future planned developments.

“It will also look to minimise climate change, reduce the need to travel to work, and promote cycling and walking through dynamic planning policies and emerging technologies.”

Views sought on engaging communities in forming of Oxfordshire Plan 2050

As part of the Oxfordshire Housing & Growth Deal agreement with the Government, the six Oxfordshire authorities have committed to producing a joint statutory spatial plan (JSSP), known as the Oxfordshire Plan 2050.

The Plan will relate to a broad range of social, environmental and economic issues affecting the county up to 2050.

As part of the Plan, we’re asking for people’s views on our Statement of Community Involvement (SCI).

The document sets out how the Oxfordshire Plan making team will engage with people throughout the plan-making process.

We recognise how important it is to engage with as many people as possible in the creation of the Plan, as it will guide development and growth across the county for many years.

We have committed to consulting communities, interest groups, stakeholders and specialists to ensure the Plan is fit for purpose and addresses varied needs over the Plan period.

The SCI sets out our proposed approach to engaging with these groups through the plan-making process.

We would like your views on whether the proposed approach and timing of engagement activity is considered to be appropriate and if you have any suggestions as to how the approach could be improved.

To take part in the consultation please visit: https://oxfordshireplan.inconsult.uk/consult.ti

Growth Board Says Let’s Build Affordable Homes

Oxfordshire Growth Board held an event for developers and registered providers of social housing to invite them to help deliver new affordable homes across the county supported by funding from the Housing and Growth Deal.

The event was held at Didcot Civic Hall 09:30-14:30 on Thursday 18 October. Officers from all four District Councils and Oxford City Council will set out details of the three-year programme to deliver at least 1,320 additional affordable homes countywide.

All forms of affordable tenure will be supported, including rent to buy, shared ownership, and homes for affordable and social rent to meet the needs of residents across the county and support the growth of the local economy.

Developers were also told of the Growth Board’s commitment to support and scale-up the application of off-site modular housing construction, and to build on the experience of Oxfordshire’s successful Bicester and Barton Healthy New Town initiatives to deliver healthy homes and communities.

Councillor Roger Cox, Leader of Vale of White Horse District Council, who hosted the event said:

“We want this programme to be a beacon of success and a step change in the delivery of affordable housing in Oxfordshire.   We are interested in providing for those on the lowest incomes, but we want also to help those who aspire to own their own homes. We want to develop the different types of housing that will meet the specific needs of the many different localities across the county.

“Most of all we want to create places in which to live, work and play that will be a legacy for our children and their families and to achieve this we both need and want to work in partnership with developers and registered providers.”

Kate Wareing, Chief Executive, SOHA Housing, said:

“Housing in Oxfordshire is amongst the most expensive in the country compared to average earnings, with a huge proportion of the people of Oxfordshire unable to access the affordable, secure accommodation they want and need for them and their families. Soha welcomes the Oxfordshire Growth Deal’s focus on enabling an increase in the number of affordable homes that can be built in Oxfordshire. Key to its success will be a combination of access to funding, supporting access to land at below market rates and enabling collaborations that create new opportunities to build more homes. We look forward to building more new homes for the people of Oxfordshire.”

More information about how the new affordable housing will be delivered and a detailed prospectus for developers can be viewed below.

Let’s Build Affordable Homes

Oxfordshire Affordable Homes Prospectus

Homes England Presentation

Affordable Housing Launch Presentation

SOHA Oxfordshire Housing and Growth Deal Presentation – Oct 18

Application Form

More clarity on Oxford to Cambridge Expressway required

The Oxfordshire Growth Board has called for the government to provide more clarity on its proposals for the route of the Oxford to Cambridge Expressway in Oxfordshire.

The chair of the Growth Board, Cllr Jane Murphy, has written to the Minister for Transport and the project’s director at Highways England explaining how the lack of certainty will affect work the board is doing to help plan for effective and sustainable growth that enhances the quality of life in Oxfordshire.

“you can read copies of the letters here”

Letter to Secretary of State Letter to Highways England

On 12 September the government announced its preference for a corridor that would take the new key road past Bicester and on to Cambridge via Milton Keynes. The road will begin somewhere along the A34 to the south of Oxford, but the government has not yet announced if it would prefer the road to route around the west of the city or to the east.

As part of the Oxfordshire Growth Deal, the growth board is preparing a plan to identify strategic growth areas for the whole county, known as the Joint Statutory Spatial Plan (JSSP). The lack of certainty over the route of the expressway through the county will make it more difficult to identify local transport needs and the most appropriate areas of growth.

In her letter, Cllr Murphy also explains that the Growth Board has agreed a set of principles saying that any decisions on the expressway should help to secure more sustainable public transport links for the county, minimise its environmental damage, support growth as set out in the JSSP and be future-proofed to enable forthcoming and future innovations like the rise of autonomous vehicles.

Cllr Jane Murphy “The expressway will have an impact on every resident and business in every area of Oxfordshire and the board is united in its belief that the government’s announcement in September has raised as many questions for Oxfordshire as it has answered.

“Much of the work the growth board is doing, in particular in relation to the Oxfordshire Housing and Growth Deal, will be directly or indirectly affected by the expressway, and we need more certainty if we’re to deliver the work required of us effectively.”

Government announcement provides planning assurance for Oxfordshire

The Secretary of State has provided Oxfordshire’s local authorities with a Written Ministerial Statement that confirms temporary bespoke arrangements that will offer protection against speculative planning applications during the three year period of development of the county-wide Joint Statutory Spatial Plan (JSSP). Under the new arrangements, each of Oxfordshire’s five District Councils will be required to demonstrate that they have in place only a 3-year housing land supply instead of the usual 5-year supply required by national policy.

Oxfordshire’s councils have committed to develop the JSSP as part of the £215 million Oxfordshire Housing and Growth Deal. The JSSP, which is due to be adopted in 2021, will complement the existing Local Plan process and set the strategic direction for planning across the county to 2050.

Councillor James Mills, Chairman of Oxfordshire Growth Board’s JSSP Advisory Sub Group said,

“This is welcome news and demonstrates the Government’s commitment towards the Oxfordshire Growth Deal so that we can plan our future growth with the assurance in place we are protected against speculative planning applications. We want the right types of future development to be in the best possible locations and to have the necessary community facilities. They need to be planned for and to have undergone public consultation.”

Written Ministerial Statement made by: James Brokenshire, Secretary of State for Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government 12 September 2018

In March this year the Government committed to the Oxfordshire Housing and Growth Deal, to support ambitious plans to deliver 100,000 homes by 2031. The Oxfordshire-wide Joint Statutory Spatial Plan to be adopted by 2021 will be supported by £215 million of funding to help deliver more affordable housing and infrastructure improvements to support sustainable development across the county.
Paragraph 217 of the National Planning Policy Framework sets out that the Government will explore potential planning freedoms and flexibilities, for example where this would facilitate an increase in the amount of housing that can be delivered. Such freedoms and flexibilities are to be considered by the Government on a case by case basis. In this instance the Government has worked closely with the authorities in Oxfordshire to agree planning freedoms and flexibilities that will support the ambitious plan-led approach through a Joint Spatial Strategy and the Housing Deal.
As part of the Housing Deal, Oxfordshire sought flexibility from the National Planning Policy Framework policy on maintaining a 5 year housing land supply. This policy supports the delivery of housing by ensuring sufficient land is coming forward to meet housing need. However, we recognise the ambitious plans in Oxford to deliver above their housing need in the long term. The Government wants to support this strategic approach to supporting housing delivery through joint working. We have therefore agreed to provide a short term flexibility which will support the delivery of the local plans for the area and ensure that the local authorities can focus their efforts on their Joint Spatial Strategy. The Government recognises that in the short term this will result in fewer permissions being granted under paragraph 11 of the National Planning Policy Framework but the Government believes that it is important to support these ambitious plans that will deliver more housing in the longer term.

Having considered the responses from a local consultation, which closed on the 12th July 2018, I am today implementing a temporary change to housing land supply policies as they apply in Oxfordshire.

For the purposes of decision-taking under paragraph 11(d), footnote 7 of the National Planning Policy Framework will apply where the authorities in Oxfordshire cannot demonstrate a three year supply of deliverable housing sites (with the appropriate buffer, as set out in paragraph 73). This policy flexibility does not apply to the Housing Delivery Test limb of footnote 7 of the National Planning Policy Framework nor plan making policy in paragraph 67. If a local authority intends to fix their land supply under paragraph 74 they will still be required to demonstrate a minimum of five year supply of deliverable housing sites, with the appropriate buffer.
This statement is a material consideration in planning decisions and applies to those local planning authorities in Oxfordshire with whom the Government has agreed the Oxfordshire Housing and Growth Deal, namely Cherwell District Council, Oxford City Council, South Oxfordshire District Council, Vale of White Horse District Council and West Oxfordshire District Council. This statement applies from today and remains in effect until the adoption of the Joint Statutory Spatial Plan in each area, provided the timescales agreed in the Housing and Growth Deal are adhered to. I will monitor progress against these timescales and keep the planning flexibility set out in this statement under review.

Growth Board consults on measures to provide increased protection against speculative housing development in Oxfordshire

The Oxfordshire Growth Board is to consult stakeholders and the public on a proposal to provide Oxfordshire councils with greater protection from speculative housing development as they plan for the county’s future housing needs.

In many parts of Oxfordshire unplanned speculative housing development in relatively unsustainable locations is raising significant community concerns, contributing relatively little to infrastructure, and diverting planning resources away from the delivery of planned strategic development sites.

The Government has recognised this challenge. It has proposed additional, time-limited protection under the terms of the Oxfordshire Housing and Growth Deal, signed in March 2018. This is the first time the Government has offered local authorities bespoke planning measures to protect against speculative housing development.

The proposal is that the Oxfordshire Councils will need to provide only a three-year land supply for the duration of the development of a Joint Statutory Spatial Plan (JSSP). A five-year minimum land supply is normally required.  In addition it is proposed that a bespoke Housing Delivery Test (HDT) would apply to Oxfordshire councils for three years following submission of the JSSP. These measures will make it harder for unplanned speculative housing development to get planning permission and will allow the Councils to focus on the preparation of the JSSP and the associated individual Local Plans.

These planning freedoms and flexibilities would be assessed on an individual District basis.  They are dependent upon the Government’s proposed changes to the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) and National Planning Policy Guidance, which were recently consulted upon.  The measures would be delivered through a Ministerial Statement following the finalisation of the revised NPPF.

The measures will support a plan-led approach from the Oxfordshire’s councils as they support the delivery of circa 100,000 new homes across the county between 2011 and 2031, in order to address the county’s severe housing shortage and expected economic growth.

Local Plans are taking shape across Oxfordshire’s five district councils, with adopted Local Plans in place in Cherwell and Vale of White Horse, a recently examined Plan in West Oxfordshire, and new Local Plans underway for Oxford City and South Oxfordshire.

The JSSP, which will be in place by 2021, will set the strategic direction for planning across the county to 2050 and complement the existing Local Plan process. It will give the public a clear overview of the countywide growth picture and offer greater opportunities to engage in collective decision making and to avoid incremental, speculative and unplanned development.

Councillor Susan Brown, Leader of Oxford City Council which currently holds the chair of the Growth Board, said:

“Through the Oxfordshire Housing and Growth deal we have secured important protections from Government against the sort of unplanned, speculative development that is blighting parts of our beautiful county. This gives us the breathing space to develop a Joint Statutory Spatial Plan over the next few years in consultation with local communities and stakeholders, that will set out a blueprint for good, sustainable growth in the future with properly planned new housing backed by social and transport infrastructure “

Councillor James Mills, Leader at West Oxfordshire District Council said,

“An Oxfordshire-wide strategy will provide further protection for local communities from speculative developments and help Councils manage housing growth effectively. Alongside our Local Plan, it  will help ensure that housing development is in the most appropriate location for our communities and that we can protect the character and appearance of our environment.”

Consultation Arrangements

The consultation will open on the 31 May 2018 and close on the 12 July at 23:45 pm.  This consultation document is available online at www.oxfordshiregrowthboard.org and is open to everyone. We are keen to hear from a wide range of interested parties from across the public and private sectors, as well as from the general public.

Go to the consultation