PLANS have been submitted for 144 new homes in Didcot.

Homes England have applied to South Oxfordshire District Council (SODC), the planning authority, for outline permission to demolish existing structures in Station Road, Lydalls Road and Haydon Road to make room for 144 new buildings.

Outline planning permission is an initial form of permission for Homes England to get feedback as regards of the scale and nature of the development. It is used to find out an early stage whether the proposal is likely to be approved before any substantial costs are incurred.

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The site forms part of the Didcot Gateway South Opportunity Area identified in the Didcot Garden Town Delivery Plan, adopted in October 2017, and the Didcot Gateway allocation in the South Oxfordshire Local Plan 2035, adopted in December 2020, for the development overall of up to 300 homes

This application is anticipated to form the first phase and act as a ‘catalyst for the regeneration of the wider Didcot Gateway area’ which Homes England has described as being ‘long overdue and has been planned for over 10 years’.

In a planning statement prepared on behalf of Homes England by Barton Willmore LLP, it said: “The development will make an important contribution towards the sustainable regeneration of Didcot and help to create an attractive new gateway into the town.

“The development will deliver housing, up to 40 per cent of which will be affordable, in accordance with SODC’s adopted Local Plan, contributing towards the provision of a sufficient housing land supply within the District.

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“The development will also contribute towards the delivery of infrastructure required to mitigate the impacts of the development.”

Didcot Town Council has recommended the plans be rejected for numerous reasons including increased traffic, overdevelopment, loss of surrounding property value and more.

Oxfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group has also recommended the application be rejected due to ‘significant capacity’ issues.

It said: “Insufficient consulting rooms to cope with increased population growth as a direct result of the increase in dwellings.”

Several residents have also suggested plans be rejected.

David Ralston of Great Western Drive commented: “Why is this even being considered when we don't have the infrastructure in place for more residents?

“Our GP surgery are overwhelmed and its near on impossible to get an appointment.”

Rebecca Tyler-Squires, of Worcester Drive, added: “All current GPs and dentists have closed patient registrations.

“All schools are oversubscribed. They infrastructure simply isn’t here for the residents already present, so it’s abhorrent that an application of this nature could even be considered.”

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The district council will make a final decision by February 28.


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This story was written by Gee Harland. She joined the team in 2022 as a senior multimedia reporter.

Gee covers Abingdon, Didcot, Wallingford and Wantage.

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