EVENTUALLY Doric submitted its proposal for the redevelopment of the West Way Shopping Centre at Botley in December 2013.

There followed a period for comment by concerned bodies and the public. As everybody knows the reaction was overwhelmingly against the scheme, not just in detail but of the whole concept.

This was not nimbyism – people could see that the scheme was completely wrong for the neighbourhood in just about every way possible.

Since then we have had delay after delay to allow Doric to think up more palatable ways of presenting the scheme. But of course it won’t be able to, because the whole concept cooked up between Doric and the VoWHDC is obviously a ghastly mistake both in overreaching scale and savage impact as well as in character.

It won’t be any good tinkering with it. Doric should now either pull out altogether or they, or someone else, should go back to the drawing board and generate an entirely different, much more modest and altogether more appropriate proposal responsive to the ideas and requirements of the local community.

I don’t see any sign of this happening. It suggests that Doric is still being led to believe its scheme will be given the go-ahead.

Of course such an outcome would be a travesty. It would make a mockery of any democratic principle in the planning process as well as being a disaster for the area. So what is really going on behind the scenes?

John Grimshaw
Barn Close

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