Bloxham Green Spaces Part 3

The idea is that having properly mapped out existing green space resources we should investigate:

  1. Whether there is a genuine surplus or shortfall of the various types of green space – using realistic measures of accessibility etc.
  2. Where there is a shortfall to try and identify how this can be reduced by additional land or by improved sharing arrangements.
  3. Aspects of good design so that we don’t jump at the first ideas people have.
  4. Costs – not just of creating but of onward maintenance.

From this we would aim to create a statement of what we need, where we need it and what it would cost.

Information sources that may help are:

The Planning obligations booklet (July 2011)

Green space strategies – a good practice guide (2004) Guidance for local authorities on creating a strategy to improve their green assets.

Ward level Data

According to the 2011 Spaces Update the situation across Bloxham, Bodicote and Milton was:

Current provision (ha) Current shortfall (ha)
Parks and gardens 0 0
Natural/ semi-natural green space 2.25 8.32
Amenity green space 2.19 3.33
Allotments 1.74 0.43
Children and young persons 0.28 4.3
Outdoor sports provision 35.22 0
41.68 16.38

How to calculate Parish Level Data

This, of course, tells us little about the Parish of Bloxham and so we need to know how the values are calculated.
There are 3 documents that seem to be pertinent
Open Space, Sport And Recreational Facilities Needs Assessment Audit And Strategy 2006
Open Space Update 2011
Planning Obligations -Draft Supplementary Planning Document 2011

2006 Rural (ha/1000 people) 2011 Rural (ha/1000 people) 2011Plan Oblig(ha/1000 people) Accessibility Other
Partks and Gardens 0 0 2.3 15 minute walk (1.2km) A welcoming, clean, well maintained site
Natural and semi natural 1.55 1.8 15 minute walk (1.2km) Publicly accessible, spacious, clean and litter free site
Amenity green space 0.75 0.94 5 minute walk (400m Greenspace site to accommodate informal play.with ancillary facilities (benches, litter bins)
Children 0.59 0.59 0.78 5 minute walk (400m) Enriched play environment for informal play and recreation by  children and young people
Young persons 0.19 0.19 15 minute walk (1.2km) Enriched play environment for informal play and recreation by  children and young people
Outdoor Sports 3.62 1.13 1.13 15 minute walk (1.2km) Safe level, well drained surfaces, changing accommodation, toilets, parking
Allotments 0.62 0.37 0.31 10 minute walk (0.8km) appropriate ancillary facilities to meet local needs
Cemeteries and churchyards 0 0 0 no standards set.

What sites exist in Bloxham?

First we need to categorise the spaces

Site ID  Site Name Category Area Size (ha)  Quality (%)  Accessibility (%)  Value
52 South Newington Recreation Ground Play Area Children 0.03 54.3 60 LOW
Jubilee Park Play Area Children 0.05
Bridges Close Play Area Children 0.05
Ayres Drive Play Area Children 0,01
Aldous Drive Play Area Children 0.1
466 Warriner School Playing Fields Sport 5.57 60 70 HIGH
468 Bloxham School Playing Field Sport 3.57
469 Jubilee Sports Grounds Sport 2.01
470 Bloxham Sports Centre Playing School Pitches Sport 2.24
473  Bloxham Driving Range (*B S Sports field!) Sport 3.57
474 Bloxham School Playing Fields Sport 1.3 66,7 50 HIGH
475 St Mary’s Churchyard Greenspace 0.79 60 80 HIGH
476 St Mary’s Cemetary Greenspace 0.92
477  The Avenue AGS Greenspace 0.1 62.2 70 HIGH
478 Cumberford Close AGS Greenspace 0.07 60 60 HIGH
479  Greenhills Park AGS Greenspace 0.07 60 60 HIGH
481  Gascoigne Way AGS Greenspace 0.24 71.1 63.3 HIGH
482 Barford Rd AGS Greenspace 0.2 71.1 63.3 HIGH
483  South Newington Road Recreation Ground Sport 1.68
596  Bloxham Driving Range2 0.11 64.4 63.3  HIGH
729 Warriner Tennis Courts 0.1 53.3 56.7 HIGH
Total Sport 19.94
Total Sport – with public access 3.69
Total Greenspace 2.39
Total Childrens Play areas  0.23

What spaces should Bloxham have then?

If we take the 2011 census figures the population of Bloxham is 3,164

2011Plan Oblig Doc
(ha/1000 people)
Population Requirement Actual Surplus / Deficit
Parks and Gardens 2.3 3164 7.28 2.39 -4.89
Natural and semi natural
Amenity green space
Children 0.59 1.87  0.23 -1,64
Young persons 0.19 0.6
Outdoor Sports 1.13 3.58 3.69 +0.11 
Allotments 0.31 0.98 0 -0,98
Cemeteries and churchyards 0 0 1.71  –

Conclusions

Sports

Bloxham has an average supply of sports fields available to the public although probably an above average number of sports teams ( TBC) using them.
However – there is no cricket ground and no ‘all-weather’ type pitches.
There are extensive school sports fields – extent of shared use TBC
Bothe senior schools have tennis courts. The Warriner courts are available to the public (TBC)

Green spaces

Bloxham has a major deficit of green spaces and those spaces that have been counted as amenity green spaces are ofen dubiously entitled to this label if one looks at the 2006 CDC criteria.
This should shape the Neighbourhood Plan and Parish Council response to planning applications that seek to further ‘eat away’ at the greenery that remains.

Play areas for children and young people

By using the CDC recommendations Bloxham has a severe shortage of play areas for children and young people.
This is a controversial topic as it seems to be predicated on the assumption that houses are built to recent standards where gardens are postage stamp dimensions.
Actually Bloxham has a disproportionate number of 4 (and even 5) bedroomed houses with gardens quite substantial enough in size for children to play in.

In the event we are forced to take new high-density estates then they will need local play areas for small children.
There is much concern that having a multiplicity of play areas for older children (one per estate) rather than focussing resources in fewer high quality areas may encourage a ‘local ghetto mentality’ rather than the increased community cohesiveness of fewer shared areas.

The NP groups and PC need to formulate a policy that will carry the village residents with it upon this matter.

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