More than two-hundred-and-fifty-people have rallied together to put a stop to a barrage of warehouse developments in north Oxfordshire.

Three separate giant warehouse developments have been proposed for countryside land surrounding several villages in greater Bicester, most of which are located around three or four miles north of the town.

The proposals put forward by three separate developers - Albion land, Tritax Symmetry and Oxfordshire Railfreight Ltd – would replace more than 1.2 million square metres of green space with concrete and warehouses.

Albion Land’s proposal covers 278,000 metres squared of land over two sites, either side of the A43 adjacent to Cherwell Services.

Whilst Tritax Symmetry are proposing to build a 325,000-metre squared warehouse hub next to Baynards Green and Stoke Lyne.

The Strategic Rail Freight Infrastructure (SRFI) project, which comes with 604,000 metres squared of warehousing and logistics infrastructure, is being planned for Heyford Park.

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Now, residents from a cluster of villages in Greater Bicester, including Ardley, Fritwell, Baynards Green, Middleton Stoney, Heyford Park and Stoke Lyne, have expressed their disdain for the plans that are “absolutely unsuitable” for the proposed land.

What began as a small community email list for residents in Stoke Lyne to discuss local events, has grown into a multiple-village list of residents who share a hope of discouraging the Tritax Symmetry development in particular.

Stoke Lyne resident Margot Hannah, said: “Since the developer’s proposal came in, all of us have blocked together into working groups and planned our attack.

“There is a core 5 or 6 of us who coordinate everything, and the email list is ever-expanding. It now includes people from several villages in the greater Bicester area.

“We got together in our Parish church a few months ago and talked through plans. We’re fighting for our local community here; these proposals are horrific.”

Ms Hannah also said that through the email list herself and other core members are encouraging residents to file their objections to the Tritax Symmetry development – the consult period for which is closing on Saturday, June 11 - through Cherwell District Council’s planning portal.

Ms Hannah said: “Cherwell District Council’s portal crashed over the weekend with the amount of objections that were being logged.”

Helen Marshall, Director of CPRE Oxfordshire said: “We’re pleased local residents are having an input and having a say, because that’s really important.

“We remain concerned about the proliferation of warehouses around Junction 10, which would turn a beautiful green area into an industrial site.

“It seems as if, with the potential of an SRFI, all other developers are trying to get in quick and capitalise on that.

“None of these sites are allocated in the current local plan.”

In response to the complaints, Tritax Symmetry highlighted the social and economic benefits of their proposed Symmetry Park Oxford North development, which is being built for Siemens Healthineers.

Which include an estimated creation of 1,126 jobs in Oxfordshire and 2,268 jobs UK wide by 2040, as well as a net increase of £820m gross value added to the Oxfordshire economy and £360m to the UK economy.

In addition to this, the developers estimate annual additional wages to be £29m higher in Oxfordshire and £16m higher across the rest of the UK by 2040.

Further, the development will create 670 construction jobs.  


Read more from this author

This story was written by Matthew Norman, he joined the team in 2022 as a Facebook community reporter.

Matthew covers Bicester and focuses on finding stories from diverse communities.

Get in touch with him by emailing:

Follow him on Twitter: @OxMailMattN1

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