Stonesfield ~ Oxfordshire
Historic Cotswold Village

ORCC: Stonesfield - A lovely place with a community coming together

Aimée Evans, of the charity ORCC (Oxfordshire’s Rural Community Council), made the main presentation at the launch of the Parish Council initiated Stonesfield Community Plan last night - with her emphasis on the plan being ‘community led’.

Aimée, shown right digesting just some of the subsequent feedback, asked the ninety or so locals that packed the Village Hall to propose what they liked about Stonesfield, what they didn’t like and what could be improved.

You can see the
photo-gallery in yesterday’s post more of these responses in raw form.

According to Aimée, the point of the exercise, which this brainstorming marked the beginning, is to create a vision for Stonesfield; what Stonesfield wants of its Community and how to get it done over the next 5 to 10 years.

A quick perusal of the suggestions suggests, however, some conflicting priorities, so it looks like there'll be plenty to play for in the coming consultations.

In ORCC’s experience, using voluntary effort, these sorts of plans take 12 to 18 months to thrash out, and generally achieve around a 60% response rate in reply to the questionnaires that follow these events.

So far 70 plus community plans have been developed in Oxfordshire since 2003, while 64 are currently been worked upon. It was suggested by ORCC that such plans are valued by policy makers due to their community involvement, and can and do enhance communities in the process.

Some examples were cited in ORCC documentation handed out.

Examples of the sort of issues generally included were:
  • Speeding traffic
  • Housing
  • Community facilities.
It was suggested that such plans wouldn’t replace the existing work of local councils but can allow access to additional funding - lottery funding being one mentioned.

Aimée then kicked off the consultation - and seemed impressed with the ensuing

Keen to keep on the meeting’s good side, she concluded by describing Stonesfield as “a lovely place with a community coming together”.
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