Application to turn former corner shop into bedsits is withdrawn

2-4 Old Grimsbury Road, Banbury. NNL-160419-163722009
2-4 Old Grimsbury Road, Banbury. NNL-160419-163722009

Residents of Grimsbury are celebrating a minor victory as a proposed development of a former corner shop has been withdrawn.

One of the oldest and most historic parts of Banbury town was under threat from a controversial planning application that local residents felt would damage the local heritage.

The former corner shop in Old Grimsbury Road was subject to an application to Cherwell District Council to convert it into a house of multiple occupancy (HMO) – specifically 12 bedsits, half of which were to be double occupancy meaning 18 people could call it home. The objections were numerous but centred around two main points – a distinct lack of available parking and the fact that Grimsbury was designated a conservation area in 2007 to protect its heritage, character and historic interest.

Steve Fisher, who along with a handful of other residents had been the unofficial co-ordinators of the opposition, said: “A few of us have been doing it and we’re just interested in keeping the place as community and family orientated.”

Mr Fisher and many other residents made official objections and presented a petition of almost 200 names to Cherwell District Council opposing the development.

Mr Fisher said: “It was quite nice doing the petition. I met loads of very interesting people but they’re angry about the houses up there in West Street where this has happened.”

Many of the buildings in West Street have been converted to HMOs creating parking and access concerns among the residents.

Lorraine Allen, Grimsbury resident for 50 years, said; “Where we have had to move our cars off the road, they’ve been replaced with cars that have no drives. Access is absolutely murderous.”

No revised plans have been submitted.