Headington Headlines #324

Your weekly round-up of local news for 26 June – 2 July.

Despite earlier reassurances, Oxford City Council has found after tests that they will have to replace the exterior cladding on the Evenlode and Windrush Towers in Blackbird Leys. The towers will not be evacuated as other fire precautions, including sprinklers, have been included in the Council’s refurbishment. The two towers in OX3 – Foresters in Wood Farm and Plowman in Northway have not yet had cladding installed so are not affected.

Oxfordshire Fire and Rescue Service has released this statement about it.

The last thing anyone wanted was for a fire to break out in one of the tower blocks. This is just what happened in Plowman Tower, Northway on Wednesday. Fire crews attended and the fire turned out to be small and in a ground floor storage area. It was quickly dealt with.

Still on the subject of fire safety in communal buildings, Headington LibDems asked @Oxford_Brookes and Unite (the company that manages Dorset House and will manage Beech House) for statements on their respective fire safety. The replies are here on the LibDem website.

Four local surgeries/health centres are now run by Hedena Health; Bury Knowle, Barton, Marston and Wood Farm. Who or what Hedena Health is, is to say the least opaque but I’ve done some digging. This post explains what’s going on.

All Saints’ Church has joined twitter. Welcome and follow @AllSaintsOX3!

Oxford City has opened the public consultation on the ‘Preferred Options’ stage of the City’s developing Local Plan covering the period up to 2036. The consultation runs until 25 August. Every household will be getting a leaflet and questionnaire, but for starters try the Council’s Local Plan web page and @OxCivicSoc‘s short article.

Local LibDems and Greens were quick to pounce on newly-elected @AnnelieseDodds‘ failure to back an amendment in the Commons that would have required the UK to stay in the Single Market. This despite her election campaign statements that ‘extreme Brexit’ would be a disaster. Anneliese has explained that she backed a different amendment which she believed was stronger. A full account of this story here.

My favourite Headington-related tweet:

Active posts on the Headington & Marston e-democracy forum this week:

  • Four local medical practices now come under Hedena Health
  • Edgeway Rd cycle apologies
  • Frontier Estates Multiple Site London Road / Barton Road

Headington Headlines #323

Your weekly round-up of local news for 19 – 25 June.

As predicted last week, the start of the Access to Headington work on Headley Way which was due today has been postponed to 24 July to allow Thames Water to carry out sewer replacement work in St Clements first. The St Clements work means traffic lights and closures for two months.

Judy Webb, naturalist, conservationist and leading light of the Friends of Lye Valley @FriendLyeValley received an Oxford City Certificate of Honour “for 16 years of service as a volunteer promoting nature conservation within Oxford”. She was presented with her certificate by Oxfordshire Deputy Lieutenant Lady Helen Baker.

Judy Webb receiving her Certificate of Honour
Judy Webb receiving her Certificate of Honour

Oxford City’s Executive Board ‘made’ (i.e. approved) the Headington Plan. To complete the process it still needs confirmation by the full City Council, which will happen next month.

The Oxford Mail reports that the OU Hospitals Trust is considering installing number plate recognition controls at the hospital car parks.

The day before the new parliament started, Oxford East’s new MP @anneliesedodds was tipped by the Huffington Post as one of ‘nine MPs tipped to shine‘ in the new parliament. They predict a significant role in Labour’s Brexit team.

I was one of a group of 14 locals who enjoyed a behind-the-scenes tour of the Energy Project at the JR Hospital on Thursday. After a short presentation giving an overview of the project we were shown the new boilers and the 4.5MW CHP engine. They’ve managed to fit some impressive equipment and miles of pipes into the existing hospital structure without losing any of the hospital’s working time.

The man who pleaded guilty to the murder in Windmill Road in February (see HH319 and HH305) was sentenced to life imprisonment with a minimum term of 20 years 10 months. Egidio Da Silva Alves murdered his brother-in-law Domingos Ramalho in a family feud.

Active posts on the Headington & Marston e-democracy forum this week:

  • Strimmer found

Headington Headlines #266

Your weekly round-up of local news for 9 – 15 May.

Vital Energi and the Hospital Trust are holding two community drop-in sessions to show their latest plans for the heatpipe connection between the JR and Churchill Hospitals. Both sessions are this Wednesday, 18 May. Details here.

All my posts about the project are under the ‘Energy Project’ tab in the main menu, and there’s a page of links and contact details here.

There’s a planning application (ref: 16/00968/FUL) to build housing on one of the Lye Valley garden plots immediately adjacent to one of the rare Lye Valley fens. @friendlyevalley are concerned that “acceptance would set a disastrous precedent for development all along this precious green corridor”. They ask for support: the deadline for comments and objections is 26 May. For more info see their web page.

A torrential rain storm on Wednesday afternoon caused flash flooding in Headington Quarry and at the bottom of Bayswater Road in Barton.

The application by Frontier Estates to build a 55-bed care home on Pullen’s Lane (see HH249) has been withdrawn. An earlier application by another developer in 2014 was turned down.

The traffic lights at the Headington roundabout failed again on Wednesday and were only restored by 9.00 on Thursday morning. Morning traffic on the A40 was delayed by up to an hour or more.

@ScienceOxford is holding an Open Day to show their plans for the Stansfeld Centre in Headington Quarry. It’s on 25 May from 1600 to 2000.

Active posts on the Headington & Marston e-democracy forum this week:

  • Energy Pipe

Headington Headlines #260

Your weekly round-up of local news for 28 March – 3 April.

With the added complication of The Lime Walk Alternative (my new indie band name) it looks like we won’t be seeing any heatpipe roadworks this side of the summer holidays. @RuthWilk explains in the e-democracy forum.

All my posts about the project are under the ‘Energy Project’ tab in the main menu, and there’s a page of links and contact details here.

Headington Action @HeadingtonA is asking local businesses to sponsor hanging baskets this summer. £100 each.

Unofficial Oxford United FC goods were being sold in Headington in the run-up to the club’s Wembley appearance on Sunday. As @OUFCOfficial pointed out, none of the money paid to unofficial traders goes to the Club.

The local campaign to get the City Council to remove parking spaces from outside thei planned new pavilion at the Margaret Road recreation ground seems to have been successful. Headington Quarry FC would still like to see further improvements to the changing facilities.

Feather and Black are closing down.

To the great disappointment of campaigners led by @friendlyevalley the City’s Planning Review Committee gave planning permission for houses to be built on green land in Warren Crescent above the Lye Valley.

My favourite OX3-related tweet of the week:

There’s a more serious story behind the picture though, about rat-running and speeding through the narrow streets of Quarry.

Active posts on the Headington & Marston e-democracy forum this week:

  • Disruption
  • Energy pipe
  • new email address

Headington Headlines #243

Here’s my weekly round-up of local news for 30 November – 6 December.

There’s a public meeting about the Hospital Energy Project on Wednesday 9 December (this week), at 7.00pm at All Saints’ Church House, New High Street. It’s organised by our local councillors and Headington Action, and they hope someone from the project team will be there to hear concerns and answer questions.

Public meeting notice

 

The Estates Department of OUH NHS Foundation Trust has started a twitter account to tell people about the Energy Project (it’s so much more than a heatpipe!). You can find them @OUH_Estates.

The long-delayed work to renovate Oxford’s tower blocks, including Northway & Wood Farm, will start in January.

Finders Keepers letting agency @FKLetting opened on London Road.

The @BartonPark_ housebuilders Hill won the Housebuilder of the Year award.

Here’s a nice little snippet of local news from @friendlyevalley

Firefighters were called to the (unstaffed) telephone exchange behind the Shell petrol station on London Road on Thursday. The fire was caused by a battery overheating. My favourite Headington-related tweet of the week:  

Active posts on the Headington & Marston e-democracy forum this week:

  • Disruption
  • How will new Oxford to London train service affect your trips to London?
  • Is it an Intelligence Test?
  • Join us today – on #GivingTuesday!
  • BARTON LINK ROAD PROTEST
  • Car sharing
  • Link Road Protest
  • Jack Russell Pub
  • Housing
  • Jaya’s Deli – new shop on London Road where Turkish grocery used to be

Headington Headlines #242

Here’s my weekly round-up of local news for 23 – 29 November.

The Headington Heatpipe story broke in the local mainstream media on Monday, with coverage on BBC Radio Oxford and in The Oxford Mail. The reports mainly focussed on the unexplained refusal of the OUH NHS Hospitals Trust to do anything to allay residents’ anxieties. It was also a hot topic at Tuesday’s Ward Focus meeting. The Trust is holding an invitation-only briefing for the media and local Councillors today (Monday): expect more details soon.

After more than a month, the County Council finally got a court order on Monday requiring the travellers camped on the Marston Ferry Road cycle track to leave. They left on Tuesday.

Confusion still reigns over the shop being prepared next to the Post Office, the old BBB Stores. One rumour says it will be an off-licence, but no licence application has been made. A competing rumour is that it will be a halal butcher. Place your bets!

Residents in Wood Farm and Lye Valley have been canvassed about whether they would support a new Aldi store on the site of Curry’s (adjacent to Homebase) on Horspath Driftway.

Photographer @Howard_S from Old Headington won @BBOWT‘s Photographer of the Month accolade for this fern photo.

An accident involving a car and a pedestrian caused long delays on the city-bound A40 on Wednesday evening. The female pedestrian had head and arm injuries and was taken to the JR. Her condition was said to be ‘not serious’.

The Black Boy in Old Headington @TheBlackBoyFood wants to branch out. They’ve submitted a planning application (ref: 15/03259/FUL) to convert the first floor of the gastropub to provide five guest bedrooms and a flat.

The Crown and Thistle pub on Old Road, which has been closed since 2012, has been put on the market for leasing at £22,500 p.a. The Oxford Mail article speculates that this may be a move designed to demonstrate it is not commercially viable as a pub in the hope it will then be easier to get permission to develop the site for other uses, probably housing.

My favourite Headington-related tweet of the week:

— Headington Plan (@HeadingtonPlan) November 28, 2015

Spare a thought for @HeadingtonNews, the long-suffering moderator of the e-democracy forum which this week has seen an outpouring of claim and counter-claim about the Barton Park – Northway access link. Threads on the forum have become so tangled it’s impossible to follow a coherent line. The problem’s not helped by an East Oxford rumour being sneaked in under cover of Northway.

Active posts on the Headington & Marston e-democracy forum this week:

  • Housing
  • Travellers along the Marston Ferry cycle track
  • Northway Green access road
  • Jack Russell Pub
  • Marston
  • Councillors opinions outweighing what is right……
  • Foxwell Drive
  • Photo of demolition squad in Foxwell Drive
  • saving Foxwell Drive Green space
  • New Aldi store could replace Currys off Horspath Driftway in Oxford
  • Jaya’s Deli – new shop on London Road where Turkish grocery used to be
  • Local concert this evening!
  • Supporting something for the greater good for one side, is not good if at the expense of the other side!
  • EOCC / Foxwell Drive

Headington Headlines #237

Here’s my weekly round-up of local news for 19 – 25 October.

The Friends of Lye Valley @friendlyevalley are running a campaign and petition to stop a planning application (Ref: 13/01555/CT3) to build houses on Warren Meadow (behind Warren Crescent). They say run-off and pollution from the development would have a serious adverse impact on the rare plants and habitats of the Lye Valley, which is an SSSI.

Oxfordshire CC has served a “Direction to Leave” on the travellers parked on the Marston Ferry cycle path. If they refuse to move the matter will go to court, which could take a further two to three weeks.

In Thursday’s by-election in Northfield Brook ward, OX3 resident Jennifer Pegg (Lab) was elected to the City Council with 78% of the votes cast (turnout 15%).

You may remember back in April a series of police raids in Cowley followed a man being found stabbed in a car in Barton and who later died in hospital (see HH211). The man accused in connection with the killing was found not guilty of manslaughter at Oxford Crown Court on Wednesday.

Active posts on the Headington & Marston e-democracy forum this week:

  • Get Creative Social Club
  • £12.m transport improvements for Headington: exhibitions and consultation
  • Somerset pub on Marston Road
  • Harcourt House
  • How will new Oxford to London train service affect your trips to London?
  • New recycling Promotion
I cover news from the OX3 postcode in Headington and out as far as Barton, Sandhills and Risinghurst (see map). To feed into next week’s summary you can comment on this article, or tweet either with the hashtag #ox3 or @mentioning @TonyOX3.