Planning and Infrastructure

The way in which some new development is happening and the scale in relation to some towns and villages is of concern. We need infrastructure alongside development not lagging behind. We also need local communitties to have a strong voice in how their own community develops. This is what Neighbourhood Planning enables them to do. As Government Champion for Neighbourhood Planning I have been encouraging communities in the constituency and across the country to grasp this opportunity. A Neighbourhood Plan gives a community a say in where new housing should go, what it should look like, and what open spaces they want to preserve. It also enables them to set out desired local amenities and infrastructure. 

There is a challenge to provide the homes needed whilst protecting our countryside. Government Planning Guidance is regularly updated to help meet this challenge. I am happy to discuss specific concerns with communities. 


John affirms his support for protecting the Green Belt

Following the examination of the draft South Oxfordshire Local Plan the Inspector has issued his preliminary conclusions and post hearing advice. We still await the final report which is due later this year.

Planning Reforms

The Local Development Plan for an area is made up of the district council’s Local Plan and relevant Neighbourhood Plans.

Oxford-Cambridge Expressway Drop in

John attended the drop-in organised by the No Expressway lobby group in Parliament today to hear more of the concerns being expressed. Today much of the focus was on proposed housing across the Arc. 

SODC Local Plan

The situation with regard to SODC’s continuing ownership of its Local Plan could be easily solved by SODC.  All it needs to do is allow the Plan to continue to examination in public before a Planning Inspector and for the Council to add potentially significant amendments and modifications for the

John comments on Green Belt protection

In a recent letter to Broxtowe Borough Council, the Minster for Housing has again set out the Government’s attitude to the Green Belt.  She has again stressed the commitment of Government to the Green Belt and to the need for ‘exceptional circumstances’ to justify changing boundaries.  The argume

John visits Kidmore End Neighbourhood Plan Exhibition

The Parish of Kidmore End is yet another community to take up the opportunity to develop a Neighbourhood Development Plan. This weekend they held one of their public exhibitions which John attended. He talked with members of the Steering Group and saw what they had done so far.

Statement on Neighbourhood Plans in South Oxfordshire

I can understand concerns resulting from a report in the Henley Standard that the withdrawal of the Local Plan would render all Neighbourhood Plans null and void. However, I do not believe that the situation is as stated.

High Court ruling on Neighbourhood Plans

The High Court has made a judgement that the Written Ministerial Statement on Neighbourhood Plans and the 3 year housing land supply figure should stand.