AN action group against the Oxford to Cambridge Expressway is calling for an ‘otiose and disingenuous’ motion put forward by a council leader to be struck off the agenda in a meeting today.

The No Expressway Group has written to Cherwell District Council opposing its leader Councillor Barry Wood’s motion to let officers analyse the effects of the plan while the council keeps 'an open mind’.

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The motion says: “The Council notes that clarity on potential routes is due.

"The Council therefore requests Officers to then assess the implications for Cherwell and the Oxon 2050 Plan and to provide recommendations for Members via Scrutiny and the Executive.

"In the meantime, the Council will maintain an open mind.”

The No Expressway Group say the council does not need a motion to instruct its council officers to do their ‘normal duties.'

It also says that the council does not maintain an open mind but ‘rather the opposite’ as it has signed the Oxfordshire Growth Deal that includes funds to develop the Oxfordshire Plan 2050 which 'assumes the expressway will happen."

It would prefer an open debate about the expressway to be held instead.

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The group says: “There is a difference between agreeing to a proposal in principle (which Council appears already to have done) and discussing the details when they become available, and which we would all expect to happen without a Council motion requiring it.

“Thus, Councillor Wood’s motion is both otiose and disingenuous. It should not be allowed to stand in its present form."

The No Expressway Group say that if the council does debate Mr Wood’s motion, that he should declare an interest as he is Chair of the Arc leaders' Group - which promotes aspects of the project - and that the last sentence of the motion about the council maintaining open-mindedness, should be struck off as incorrect.

Mr Wood did not want to comment, but a spokesperson from Cherwell District Council said: "“Motions have been published on the agenda of Monday’s full council meeting in line with the constitution. As normal practice councillors will debate and may amend motions in accordance with normal democratic guidelines.”