With lockdown set to continue until at least mid February, local green space is in huge demand. With the Lakes closed and the Lucy Plackett field becoming busier than ever, many WARA members have asked why there is still no access to the community land on the Milton Road.
The Parish Council have repeatedly said that there is absolutely no access to this land, which was previously well-used by dog walkers and families, “due to the health and safety risks of contractors being on site”.
But there are no contractors on site and there has not been for months. Obviously, the new pitches will need mowing from time to time, but this is no different to the Lucy Plackett field.
The WARA committee has considered how we can restore this green space to the public, and have made the Parish Council an amazing offer:
Many of our members are asking us why the access to the field between Ball Colegrave and Henge Close could not be re-instated, as there is currently no activity in the field and Adderbury Parish Council have reported that the development of the sports pavilion is delayed due to a lack of funding resulting from the Covid 19 pandemic.
We understand that negotiations are underway with Cherwell District Council to scale back the scheme such that it might be affordable without the funding streams that were likely to have been available had the pandemic not happened. It is clear that these negotiations and the raising of alternative funding to enable the development to proceed will take some time. It therefore makes sense for access to the field to be re-instated while this takes place.
We understand Adderbury Parish Council’s concerns that the sports pitches have now been constructed and seeded and would therefore require fencing off such that they do not get damaged.
We therefore propose that West Adderbury Residents Association would provide fencing along the edge of the existing grass track and around the pitch areas to prevent access on to the completed works. This would also address any health and safety issues relating to the infiltration basin.
Given that the field has been designated specifically for recreational use by the local community we feel that West Adderbury Residents Association and Adderbury Parish Council should do everything that we can to ensure that the local community get some use out of their space. In these difficult times where Government Guidelines are such that the public should exercise close to their homes this field would provide a precious amenity space for the people of Adderbury.
These are unprecedented times for the local community. With the current lockdown, the number of parishioners using the Lucy Plackett in order to access some open space is becoming too high at times and the Lakes are now closed. Having access to this field is critical for the mental health and welfare of the local residents
We look forward to your response.
The WARA Committee
Kevin Underwood, Allan Ziff, Tom Osborne, Denise Mobbs, Sue Bradley”
This offer was sent to the Parish Council, including all current parish councillors, on 21 January 2021. The fencing would be provided by the WARA committee at no cost to members or the wider community.
The Parish Council has responded by saying that it will consider WARA’s “request” at the PC meeting on 23 February 2021.
While we are disappointed that it will be over a month before WARA receives a response, we are hopeful that the Parish Council will work with WARA to provide West Adderbury residents with the green space they so desperately need.