Split in Adderbury sees 750 residents in a bid to go it alone

An attempt is being made to reinstate the West Adderbury Parish Council so 750 residents of the area can decide the fate of their own neighbourhood.
The field in Milton Road, Adderbury which is part of the focus of a split between residents of the village. West Adderbury now wants its own parish councilThe field in Milton Road, Adderbury which is part of the focus of a split between residents of the village. West Adderbury now wants its own parish council
The field in Milton Road, Adderbury which is part of the focus of a split between residents of the village. West Adderbury now wants its own parish council

West Adderbury has won a Community Governance Review to see whether the area should be allowed its own parish council, deciding its own matters.

The move has come after householders in the west of the village have felt that decisions by Adderbury Parish Council (APC) are being steered by those living east of the Oxford Road and who include residents of Twyford.

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In the past few years the west has had two new housing developments built on Milton Road. But more recently the decision to establish a sports and community pavilion and football pitches on land donated by a housing developer has infuriated those living nearby who fear light pollution, noise and more traffic. The development would largely replace activity on the centrally placed Lucy Plackett playing fields.

CDC must complete the review within 12 months. It will involve a consultation of residents and the current Adderbury Parish Council.

The West Adderbury Residents' Association (WARA) said: "Our own parish council would deal solely with issues affecting the residents of West Adderbury and we would be able to establish rules to ensure it would be run democratically. We are fortunate in having a pool of local knowledge and experience to make this happen.

"In our view APC is ineffectual and awkward to deal with. The Community Governance Review will examine our case for separation. The earliest we could expect a decision would be May 2021. The new West Adderbury parish would have a population of around 750.

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"West Adderbury only makes up 23 per cent of households in the wider parish. This has enabled APC for years to routinely use the support they enjoy in Twyford and east Adderbury to promote their interests over and against those of West Adderbury.

"Traffic has more than doubled in West Adderbury since 2012 and speeding is a huge problem. Yet, despite APC’s claim to have earmarked £40,000 for traffic improvements, it has steadfastly refused to spend any of this money on any meaningful traffic calming measures in our part of the village. It seems only a matter of time before someone is killed.

"Planning is another key issue. Because Adderbury is officially a Category A village more development may be directed to West Adderbury thus endangering its rural character. If we achieve our objective of establishing a West Adderbury Parish Council we would seek to persuade the planning authority to re classify West Adderbury to a lower level within the local plan.

"A further contentious issue is APC’s grandiose plans for building a community centre and sports venue with licensed bars and football pitches on the Milton Road. There are concerns the scheme is a project that could well prove an expensive white elephant."

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WARA fears that if the venue doesn’t pay its way residents might have to pay more council tax to cover running costs.

"For more than two years we have been asking to see APC’s long promised business plan demonstrating the viability of the project. No one has yet seen it. Most vocal support for the scheme comes from Twyford and east Adderbury both of which will be wholly unaffected by the anticipated huge increase in noise and pollution generated by traffic and attendant crowds," the association said on its website.

Diane Bratt, chairman of Adderbury Parish Council said: "It is unfortunate that a few west Adderbury residents feel they have been left out in some way from decisions for the village.

"However the parish council has always taken all residents’ views into consideration and the current planning application for the building on the Milton Road has been modified following residents' particular concerns.

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"Also the west of Adderbury has always been well represented on the Parish Council, currently four out of 11 councillors are from the west and until two councillors chose to step down last year there were six out of 11."

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