Welcome to Long Wittenham

Welcome to the website for the village of Long Wittenham, Oxfordshire, England. Within these pages you will find information on the village, the Parish Council and its activities, a directory of local businesses and services, information on clubs and groups, and lots of other things too.

Complete the “Subscribe” option at the bottom right of this page to be notified by email when village news is posted.

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Kler Enquiry Report

The four-day public enquiry into plans by the Kler Group to build 36 houses on the field at the corner of the Didcot Road and Fieldside ended at lunchtime on Friday 17th November following a morning site visit and tour of the village by the inspector heading the enquiry, Phillip Lewis.  His report and conclusion is expected early in the New Year.

Mr Lewis was accompanied on his visit to the site of the former Challis Farm land by members of the Kler team, South Oxfordshire District Council’s planning representatives and members of Long Wittenham Parish Council.

Kler’s case is based on the need for more homes in Long Wittenham, but both the district and parish councils objected on the grounds that the development is not needed and is contrary to the recently approved Neighbourhood Development Plan (NDP).  The NDP should give the parish a large measure of protection against unwanted developments.

The main thrust of the parish council’s case is that the Kler plan represents a threat to the viability of the proposed community hub.  This plan includes a new school, pre-school and village hall along with new houses further along Didcot Road and adjacent to the site of the Kler scheme.  Part of the funding of the hub would come from the sale for housing of the current school and village hall sites.

Outlining the village’s case was the parish council’s planning consultant Andrea Pellegram, supported by parish councillors Steve Brown and Peter Rose.  He, Mr Brown and local resident Mike Duff had worked to prepare the case.  The district council was represented by barrister Robin Green assisted by planning consultant Philippa Jarvis.

The Kler team was headed by barrister John Barrett assisted by planning consultant Michael Robson and transport consultant Nicholas Jones-Hill.  Three days were taken up by submissions and cross examinations from both sides.  The last day on Friday included the site visit and final submissions from the three parties.

A number of residents of the village spoke in support of the parish council.  Retired judge Patrick Eccles dealt with the legalities of planning issues;  Catherine Harrison spoke on behalf of the pre-school and Jane May for the W.I. and Good Neighbours Club.  Dominic Jarman talked about the harm the Kler development posed to the visual link from Fieldside to Wittenham Clumps, one of the most visited landmarks in Oxfordshire.

Also supporting the council was district councillor Sue Lawson.  A letter was sent by the primary school’s head teacher Alison Mountain outlining the importance of a new village school.  The village hall committee also sent a letter of support.

At the end of the enquiry Mr Brown said:  “We received a mountain of paperwork from the Kler team about three weeks ago.  It took an enormous effort to prepare our own case and then we got all the Kler documents.  Two days before the enquiry we got their last submission which had to be dealt with before the enquiry started.”

He said there was valuable support from residents and he thanked everyone who attended the enquiry.  Mr Brown added: “The Inspector now has to go away and consider everything we have submitted together with the evidence from all parties.  Then he has to get it checked before we get a decision, which we hope will be early in the New Year.”

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New Community Lottery for South Oxfordshire

A new online community lottery to raise cash for good causes is to be set up early next year by South Oxfordshire District Council.

It will give residents the chance to enter a £1 weekly online draw with the chance of winning prizes ranging from free prize draw tickets to a £25,000 jackpot.  Each ticket bought has a 1 in 56 chance of winning a prize.  From each £1 ticket bought, nearly 60p will go to local good causes.

Eligible community groups and charities will be able to apply to become beneficiaries. Players will be able to choose which cause they support, or opt to pay into a general fund which will be allocated by the council to local good causes. Continue reading

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Long Wittenham War Dead Honoured

Last Saturday, Remembrance Day, a gathering of Long Wittenham residents remembered soldiers from the village killed in the First World War.  More than thirty people assembled around the memorial outside the village school to pay their respects to the dead of all world conflicts.  Fourteen men from Long Wittenham were killed in action or died from wounds in France, England and Palestine in the First World War.

In the past children from the school mingled with older generations but were absent this year because Armistice Day fell on Saturday.  However, on Friday the Rev David Haylett visited the school and spoke to the children about the significance of World War One, later conflicts and the impact they had on the world and future generations. Continue reading

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Bonfire Night Profits Help Playground

Long Wittenham’s annual bonfire and fireworks display on Saturday 4th November raised more than £2,000 – up £1,000 on last year – and helped boost the village new playground equipment project.

Nearly 500 people attended the event in Ward’s Field.  It was organised by village social group The Wittenham Warriors and supported by the Parish Council.

A kaleidoscope of colour cascaded from a dazzling pyrotechnic feast. The fireworks, fizzed, whizzed, crackled and banged while a huge, orange coloured bonfire blazed in the background.

On top of the inferno was the winner of the Guy Fawkes competition, Daenerys from Game Continue reading

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Parish Council Meeting – Thursday 16th November

The Parish Council will hold its monthly meeting this coming Thursday evening (16th November) at 7:30pm in the Village Hall.

Download the agenda here.

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Clifton Hampden Road Junction Works

Oxfordshire County Council now expects work at the junction of the A415 Abingdon Road and B4015 Oxford Road in Clifton Hampden to upgrade the signals mode of operation from the existing Vehicle Actuated system to MOVA (Microprocessor Optimised Vehicle Actuation) to commence on Monday 13th November 2017.

This is the update from OCC Environment & Economy (E&E) Department:

“Following a site meeting we have modified the extent of work to be carried out with a view to keeping inconvenience to a minimum.  We intend to use temporary signals only during off-peak periods (with the possible exception of a section of works in the High Street which may require them to be deployed over a 24 hour period – work will not be Continue reading

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Support Your Village

A reminder that the public enquiry to hear the appeal by Kler Group for their planning application for 36 houses on the field at the corner of the Didcot Road and Fieldside will start at 10am next Tuesday 14th November at Didcot Civic Hall.

Speaking at the enquiry on behalf of the parish council will be Councillors Peter Rose and Steve Brown.  They would like as many residents as possible to attend the first session on Tuesday morning to demonstrate the strength of opinion against this application.  The hearing will last three to four days and of course you are welcome to attend any or all sessions.

Please attend if you can – your presence is important for the future of the village.

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St Nicholas Food Fayre

Don’t miss the St Nicholas Food Fayre on Saturday 9th December between 12noon and 3pm at St. Mary’s Church, Long Wittenham.

Come along to buy from a great selection of tasty delights e.g. cakes, puddings, mince pies, biscuits, chutneys and much more.  There will also be the chance to buy spring bulbs potted up ready to flower, candles, decorations, cards, gift wrap and more.  Most of the produce will have been made by people from the village.

Children will find lots of things to do, including a St Nicholas Lucky dip, and the grown ups won’t miss out as they can treat themselves on the Christmas present tombola!

Continue reading

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Oxfordshire GP Services Consultation

Local GP practices have been working with Oxfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and patient representatives on plans for the future of GP and primary care services in Oxfordshire.

GP practices have joined others in Oxfordshire to talk about how they currently work, what problems they regularly face and how they could work better.  Discussions have also taken place with Patient Participation Groups to find out more about the patient experience, listening to what patients feel is important and their ideas for change.

From this ongoing engagement work with patients, GPs and clinicians, Oxfordshire CCG Continue reading

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Spectacular Bonfire Night

Congratulations and thanks to Emma Newman and her enthusiastic band of volunteers for a highly successful Village Bonfire Night last Saturday evening.  The event was held on Ward’s Field and attracted a huge crowd to see the massive bonfire and a magnificent firework display, provided this year by a new company based in Wallingford.

The event was supported by the Long Wittenham Parish Council and the Wittenham Warriors, and proceeds will go towards the Bodkins Playground Improvement Project.

A more detailed report and photographs will follow.

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