Probably the greatest immediate challenge facing SOS is planning. Can our county, and district, realistically hope to absorb the over 100,000 new homes recently proposed for Oxfordshire and yet maintain a high level of sustainability and design? We have sent SODC detailed suggestions for strengthening the planning system and feed our ideas into leading members of SODC Planning Committee, as well as Wallingford and Henley Town Councils. We see the proposed large scale (550 new homes) new housing development for Wallingford as a vital testing ground of what might be achieved if the local community works closely with SODC and the developers. We have involved local school children, and are part of the SODC FOcus Group designed to involve local people in consultation as the plans evolve.
We believe strongly in the need, both for ourselves in local green groups and more widely for the local community, to learn from the example of the best designed and most sustainable housing schemes elsewhere. We therefore commissioned a study in this area from Oxford University students. We are holding, in conjunction with Sustainable Wallingford, a public meeting on 6 June, addressed by Elizabeth Gillespie, vice Chair of SODC Planning Committee, Paul Black, a leading light in the Rowntree Housing Trust Derwenthorpe Eco Housing Development and Opinder Liddar, a well known local green architect, to discuss the possibilities.
A packed public meeting in Wallingford Town Hall on 6 June 2014 heard two leading experts talk at the cutting edge of new housing design and sustainability give their views how Wallingford’s proposed new housing might develop. Paul Black, who has worked closely with the Joseph Rowntree Housing Trust on their exciting new eco-development at Derwenthorpe (just outside York) – and lives there – made the following presentation with slides:
Derwenthorpe Details for Sustainable Wallingford
Opinder Liddar, local green architect, spoke (again with slides) of how principles of sustainable design might be applied on the site. His presentation is available here:
Follow up Wallingford
A number of people signed up to work with Sustainable Wallingford and South Oxfordshire Sustainability, SODC and the developers to help make these aspirations a reality. Anyone else who would like to be actively involved should contact John Gordon at email@example.com.
Contact for SOS Planning:
John Gordon: firstname.lastname@example.org