An angry homeowner living in a major self-build development says he was unable to comment on a public consultation portal due to being given “incorrect information.”

Graven Hill Village Development Company (GHVDC) – the company who run the custom and self-build housing development in Bicester – has recently submitted an outline planning application for the latest phase of its overall site.

Alongside these plans the GHVDC opened an online public consultation for people to share their views.

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The company posted leaflets to existing Graven Hill residents listing three relevant URLs for the consultation, but one man said it was difficult to access the online portal.

Simon Taylor, a self-builder at Graven Hill said: “It’s encouraging that GHVDC finally recognise they have a duty to consult with their residents on any changes to the masterplan that influenced residents’ decisions to move to Graven Hill.

“It is disappointing they haven’t taken on board our feedback on their previous planning applications, so I was looking forward to being able to comment on their latest proposed set of changes, but I was unable to because GHVDC gave the wrong URL to give feedback.

“I have to question whether they actually take residents feedback seriously if they can’t be bothered to check their own communications.

“When I did finally work out how to give feedback, there was no information detailing the actual changes themselves, just some simplistic questions on what facilities were important to me.

“It does appear GHVDC are reluctant to solicit constructive feedback from residents – I’ve offered in the past, but they’ve never followed up.”

A spokesperson for GHVDC said: “There was a technical glitch with one of the URLs listed on our leaflet.

“The issue was short-lived and has been remedied.

“The other URLs highlighted in the mailer were always working so at no point were respondents unable to get through to the portal.”

The new phase of the development will include 1,085 homes, a community hall, a pub, restaurant and hotel, extra care housing, a nursery, playing fields, sport changing pavilion, access and green and open space.

The original planning permission for Graven Hill was approved in 2014 and required reserved matters applications within eight years.

Which is why a new outline planning application has been submitted by GHVDC.

The development has featured on Grand Designs on multiple occasions, the last time being during the series of Grand Designs:The Streets.

The first episode aired on Wednesday, April 13, 2022 on Channel 4, and four of the five episodes focused on Graven Hill homes.


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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