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 #308

Your weekly round-up of local news for 6 – 12 March.

The Headington Neighbourhood Plan got its final go-ahead on Thursday. There will be a referendum on 4 May, the same day as the County Council elections. Expect a big publicity drive, and if you live in Headington please take the time to look at the Plan and VOTE! More as always on the Headington Plan website.

As expected, the East Area Planning Committee approved the planning applications on the Jack Russell & Ampleforth Arms pubs. To remind you, the application for the Jack Russell is for

“Demolition of public house, erection of 16 flats (6 x 3-bed, 8 x 2-bed, 2 x 1-bed) on three floors. Provision of 19 car parking spaces.”

and for the Ampleforth

“Part demolition of the existing public house. Part redevelopment and conversion to create a new community run public house at basement and ground floor level and 1 x 1-bed, 3 x 2-bed and 2 x 3 bed residential apartments over ground, first and second floors. Erection of 1 x 3-bed dwellinghouse.(Use Class C3). Provision of private amenity space, landscaping, car parking and associated infrastructure.”

The Aldi store on Horspath Driftway (alongside Homebase, ex- Curry’s) opened at 8am on Thursday.

As one door opens, another closes. The W H Smith local store in Headington is for sale for £615k freehold, and is reported to be closing on 23 March (Thursday next week). Thanks to @headingtonnews and @DarrenGrant_UK for spotting this.

Last October the British Legion planted 456 daffodils at ‘the Final Turn’, the corner at the entrance to the JR on Headley Way; one daffodil for every member of the UK Armed Forces killed in the Afghanistan campaign. The daffodils are now flowering. See HH289 for the original story.

456 daffodils at the Final Turn
456 daffodils at the Final Turn

A pupil at @HeadingtonSch has been selected to play hockey for England U16s.

In an article in the Guardian @Bill_Heine‘s son explains why he bought the Shark House.

The Oxford Diocese has put in a planning application (ref: 17/00393/FUL) to demolish Old Marston Vicarage in Elsfield Road and replace it with a 4-bedroom house. The existing building is said to be structurally unsound. Consultation closes on 28 March.

The dispute between the City and flat-owners in the Northway and Wood Farm tower blocks over the cost of refurbishment and renovations (see HH 244 and HH282) moved forward after a tribunal ruled that the owners would not have to pay for some parts of the work. There’s still another ruling to be made later this year, and it seems the City’s right to charge for other parts of the work has been upheld.

My favourite Headington-related tweet of the week:

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

  • Marston Medical Centre
  • Reply marston medical centre
  • Proposed abolition of Oxford City Council
  • Silent Auction at Townsend House
  • Hospital Parking
  • London Road – cycle path
  • Headington Plan – what’s next?