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Agenda item

West Eynsham Strategic Development Area (SDA) Masterplan Addendum


To consider an addendum to the West Eynsham Strategic Development Area (SDA) masterplan which has been produced by the four main landowner/developers in response to further engagement with third party landowners.



That the Committee:

a) Notes the content of the report; and

b) Subject to any specific comments the Committee wishes to make, recommends that the Executive approve the West Eynsham SDA Masterplan Addendum attached at Annex A as a material planning consideration for any current or future planning applications that come forward in relation to the West Eynsham SDA.


The Chair introduced the Planning Policy Manager, Chris Hargreaves.

The Chair reminded the Committee of the recommendations in the report and suggested the Committee, as the Parish Councillor requested, not accept the Addendum and refer back to the original report.


The Planning Policy Manager started the presentation by responding to the Chair’s question, and clarified that there had been extensive consultation to produce the Masterplan. The Masterplan had gone before Cabinet in March 2022 and to the Joint Climate and Environment and Social Overview and Scrutiny Committee in March 2022. After the threat of a legal challenge, West Oxfordshire District Council sought legal advice which resulted in the developer being asked to engage with the landowners, including the Parish Councillor, and make any updates accordingly. This resulted in the Addendum document being produced by the developer. The Planning Policy Manager clarified that the Master Plan was not to be reviewed, only focused updates were to be added. These included the following;

  • Clarification on points within the Masterplan;
  • Factual updates to information, with focus on corrections in Masterplan;
  • Visual updates, which included formatting to improve clarity;
  • Information updated to include 2 parcels of land as potential development land;
  • Clarification on the existing use of the 2 parcels of land; one site was a green space and the other site was garden land. They were now shown on the addendum with hatching as potential development land;
  • Clarification that if landowners requested the development plans be possibly brought forward, any such applications would be in consideration with the policies of the Local Plan and any other policies within planning at that time.


In response to the question if the document were not to be accepted by the Committee, The Planning Policy Manager clarified that the document responds to the discussion points asked when brought to Cabinet in March 2022.


Councillor Wilson entered the committee room at 4.30pm.


The Chair suggested that the committee go through the document page by page to pick up points. Councillors asked if the Planning Policy Manager had a prepared presentation for the committee to refer to, for the benefit of new members of the committee. The Councillors highlighted that this was not an officers’ report and asked that points be clarified when planning policy was considered.


The Planning Policy Manager gave a recap on the Masterplan and included the following points;

  • The initial consultation stage of the report;
  • The criteria of the report;
  • After a legal challenge, the Council agreed that the four main developer teams would take on any further strategic planning, which resulted in the Masterplan;
  • Masterplan was considered as material consideration planning documentation, and would not supersede the Local Plan and the same principle would apply to the Addendum document;
  • For any future planning applications the Masterplan and Addendum would also be considered.


The Committee asked for the two parcels of land to be focused on, as these were the significant changes to the Addendum document. The following points were focused on;


  • The Burial Ground – recognition that there was a shortage of sites however there was no policy requirement to include a burial ground by the developers. The Parish Council was in discussion with Oxfordshire County Council to provide a piece of land for a burial ground and discussions had been positive.;
  • The Stewardship – The Planning Policy Manager had met with Councillor Ross Macken to discuss this issue, and it was agreed discussion would take place the main landowner team with the West Eynsham Site and the Garden Village Site. The aim would be to find the most suitable model for long term stewardship;
  • The Local Plan – Currently under review, enabling issues raised in the meeting to be addressed;
  • Potential housing and access to land – Concerns were raised over the potential development of the two parcels for housing, with particular focus on vehicular access to the sites. Although there was no current application for housing on these sites, it was hard to predict what landowners were minded to do in the future.


Councillor Rosie Pearson proposed that the Committee recommend to Executive that the West Eynsham SDA Masterplan Addendum be rejected and not taken forward.


Councillor Andy Goodwin seconded the proposal, which was put to the vote. There were 10 votes in favour and 9 votes against with 1 abstention (Councillor Charlie Maynard). The vote was carried.


Committee Resolved to:

Recommend to Executive that the West Eynsham SDA Masterplan Addendum be rejected and not taken forward.

Supporting documents: