Stonesfield ~ Oxfordshire
Historic Cotswold Village

housing development

Housing Development group rebranding as Sustainable Stonesfield to help preserve the character and beauty of the Village

David Lines has announced today that the informal housing development working party has decided to take on the name of Sustainable Stonesfield, to better describe its objective of “trying to retain the character and beauty of our village for the people who live here now and for those who will live here in the future.”
The group argues that development plans must include improvements to local infrastructure; that sufficient affordable houses are built in the village for young people and families; to protect an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB); and the District Council’s duty to consult effectively with local residents when drawing up plans for development.

Public meetings in March
A public meeting is to be held by Sustainable Stonesfield at 7.30 pm on Monday 27 March at the village hall to listen local views.
In addition, Cala Homes is hosting a drop-in meeting on Monday 20 March, also in the Village Hall, 4 – 8 pm to show its plans to build 50 houses one one site in Stonesfield.


Could up to 200 new houses could be built in Stonesfield?

In light of an expected surge in local housing development, a group of Stonesfield residents has started a campaign to protect the village from “unbridled development” and fight for developments to only be approved where they provide benefits to existing residents. 
The informal group, called The Housing Development Working Party, plans to arm the community with a steady stream of news and documents, and address any deficiencies in the planning process. 
The group has set up a mini-site within to distribute this information as the issue progresses.
According to its spokesperson David Lines, “There is huge pressure from central government to build a significant number of houses in West Oxfordshire. West Oxfordshire District Council (WODC) has been forced to revise its Local Plan and proposes to build many more houses than both it and the professional consultants it employed, thought sensible.”

Stonesfield allocated 50 houses but could be as high as 200
“As part of these plans Stonesfield has been allocated 50 houses but in reality the number of new houses could be as high as 200. There should have been a consultation exercise to capture the views of residents but the information failed to reach many of those who live here. In spite of the fact that Stonesfield is ill equipped to take a significant increase in housing, population and traffic there appears to be little political will to challenge what is planned. The fact that Stonesfield sits in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, which should have offered some protection, appears to have been ignored.”

Leaflet canvassing views being distributed
The group is this week circulating a leaflet providing more information and a short questionnaire to canvass local views. You can download extra copies of the questionnaire from here if required.
An e-mail address has also been set up to receive submissions in response to the questionnaire, and contact the group if you want to become involved or ask for more information.
Speaking for the group David adds, “The future of Stonesfield really does lie in our hands and we encourage every resident to let the Parish Council have their views by responding to the questionnaire you will shortly receive.”