Friday, 29 November 2013

The Leisure Centre project - have you responded to the council?

Time is running out to respond to the council on the Leisure Centre project consultation, the deadline is midnight on Monday 2 December.

Did you go to the open meeting organised by the Save the Rec group last Monday? If so, you will know that people who attended agreed that the best answer would be to tell the council that none of the presented options is acceptable, due to lack of information presented with them.

Whatever your opinion is, please let the council know:

Leisure Centre project online with link to online survey

Here are some recent reports:

Hampshire Chronicle: Winchester meeting hears leisure centre options withheld from public consultation
Winchester Today: Winchester RPLC plans “like GCSE project”
WINOL (video): Hundreds gather for 'Save the Rec' meeting
Abbotts Barton Community Group blog: The council's Leisure Centre consultation and the Save the Rec meeting

And of course the Save the Rec website.

Sunday, 13 October 2013

Another green area to be built on - save our recreation ground!

As published by the Abbotts Barton Community Group:

Whether or not you are using the leisure centre and the recreation grounds at North Walls for sports, the plans of the Council to build a new centre on one of the North Walls recreation grounds should be looked at by all of us as they will affect most of us in many ways.

If you are not familiar yet with the Council's proposal please read the information provided via the Save The Rec website. There is also a link to the full Council proposal.

Most importantly: there is some chance that Councillor Keith Woods will bring his proposal to a vote at the council meeting on 6 November. If you want to write to councillors on this issue (the more the better), aim to do it before then.

On Friday (11 October) Radio Solent had a feature about the campaign in the Julian Clegg show, starting at 1:09. If you are interested, the show can be listened to for another five days.

The October edition of winchestertoday had a great editorial on the same subject:

By the way, the Save The Rec group are now also using Twitter and Facebook which for most of us are easier to follow than a website:

Twitter - Save The Rec
Facebook - Save The Rec

If you are concerned about the Council's plans please follow/like (or sign up with your email on their website) to show the group your support AND write to the Council!

Thursday, 3 October 2013

The Council Leader's announcement from 11 September

Here is the actual announcement as per the 11 September Cabinet meeting notes (emphasis done by us):
Councillor Wood gave an announcement on the latest situation regarding the new homes building programme. In summary, the first priority would be the three schemes already on site which were due for completion in March 2014: Dever Close, Micheldever; Bourne Close, Otterbourne; and Station Close, Itchen Abbas. Over the next three years, it was proposed to take forward another three major schemes: The Queens Head, Stanmore; Victoria House, Winchester; and an “Extra Care” housing scheme for elderly people. If additional funds became available, small sites in Alresford, Colden Common, Otterbourne and Swanmore would be considered. Councillor Wood stated that when more funds became available from 2016 onwards, schemes in Westman Road, Weeke; Wilberforce Close and Somers Close, Stanmore; and Hillier Way and two garage sites at Chaundlers Road and Hussey Close, Abbotts Barton would be developed. He stated that there were no plans to develop Dyson Drive or Charles Close in Abbotts Barton in the foreseeable future.
Can you hear the sigh of relief coming from the community? :)

Thursday, 26 September 2013

Save The Rec and Save The Parks / the Council's plan for the Leisure Centre

As today's leading article in the Hampshire Chronicle confused our campaign with the newly set up Save The Rec group here are few items to help you along:

There are a number of concerns about the Council's plans:

Loss of open space
During the Save The Parks campaign a number of residents of Abbotts Barton have been told by city officers that the parkland in Abbotts Barton is not that important to keep intact as there is always North Walls Recreation Ground. Needless to say, we disagree with that completely: a) North Walls is not in view by houses in Abbotts Barton (important when you have children), and b) always very busy, you can't just go there and do a community event on the weekend without colliding with many other people and groups. And now a big part of it is supposed to be built on? If the councillors keep coming up with more ideas for the destruction of green spaces in Winchester, soon all of Winchester will have to make do with whatever little space is left at North Walls! Great prospect.

Yes, we do understand that the Leisure Centre can't go on for much longer in its current state and we also understand that it needs to cater for more people than just Winchester residents -  and we also love that it's close to us. But maybe there is another way, for example splitting it up into two, with possibly a swimming pool at Bar End and an update to what exists currently?

Also a new improved Leisure Centre as per the current plans of the Council would create quite a lot more traffic into the dead end system of Gorden Road, right past a busy school, St. Bede's. This of course is troubling parents who want to make sure they and their children can walk to school safely. And of course it would also affect the people living along those roads.

Even if the traffic flow would be changed to a one way system (in at Gordon Road, out via Park Avenue) this would not be great as there are currently a play area and a skate park which would then possibly be right next to the road, or even worse divided by it.

Equally, the path along the field in question is already very busy as it is not only one of the main walking routes to school and into town but also used a lot by cyclists (it is a shared path). Careful planning would have to be done here to make this safer for both parties, pedestrians and cyclists!

The main thing to remember is that once open space is gone, it's gone forever!

If these plans trouble you, we can only recommend for you to write to Winchester City Council once again.

Tuesday, 17 September 2013

Winchester City Council has removed the Abbotts Barton parks from its current council house building programme!

At last week's Cabinet meeting Council Leader Keith Wood made an announcement about an update to Winchester's council house programme. He detailed which local housing schemes will be going through and which won't be due to limited finances.
Over the next three years Winchester Council will not be building any new houses in Abbotts Barton! However  - when more resources will become available again -, Hillier Way and the two garage sites (also Westman Road in Weeke) are still supposed to be developed, probably within five years.

The main park in Abbotts Barton and Dyson Drive green which we were fighting for to be kept as they are (clear of houses) were not mentioned at all, so for now these should be safe. What a shift in focus by the Council!

Of course this is great news for the Abbotts Barton community and Winchester in general, and we are very happy that going forward we will be able to use our parks as we used to!

Many thanks to everybody who supported our campaign in so many different ways:
  • Preparing and handing in an application for a village green status for Dyson Drive green.
  • Writing petitions and spending hours going from house to house to get signatures.
  • Researching numbers, laws, and maps to help with the campaign.
  • Reading through Council meeting papers and reports to find information and report that back to the group.
  • Attending and speaking at Council meetings on behalf of the community.
  • Writing letters and emails to councillors and city officials.
  • Engaging in regular conversations with councillors about what is going on.
  • Engaging with the media in various ways to get our campaign out into the public.
  • Running a website and Twitter account to keep everybody informed.
We are also very grateful to have received so many messages of support via our petition website!

How to stay connected
We are planning to keep an eye on Council's development plans for Abbotts Barton. If you would like to stay up-to-date over the coming years, you have a several options to do so. Using these automated options saves you from having to come back to our website manually every so often to catch news:
Alternatively you can stay in touch with what is happening via the Abbotts Barton Community Group:

Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Watch this spot!

We have received some very exciting news about changes to the council house building programme that were announced in today's Cabinet meeting. However, before we can give you any confirmed details we are still awaiting more information. Watch this spot!

Sunday, 28 July 2013

Dates for the calendar and in the media

Dates for the calendar

Just a quick reminder that the next Councillor's Surgery is not long to go: Thursday 1 August, 7:30pm to 8:30pm, at Hyde Parish Hall.

We are also trying to use our park the best we can before it's full with houses, therefore the Abbotts Barton Community group has the next Picnic & Play event lined up for 11 August! Let's hope for good weather (we are back to normal obviously).

In the Media - July so far

20/07/13: Hampshire Chronicle says Civic chiefs will mitigate lost open spaces but quotes Cllr Tait saying "there will be occasions where the council will consider the loss of open space in favour of the housing". We say: build on the brownfield sites first!

11/07/13, HC (paper edition only): Hundreds sign petition to save green space

07/07/13, DE: 500 sign up to save precious green space at Abbots Barton near Winchester

Other housing related news:

22/07/13, HC: Scouts in plea for more Barton Farm facilities - wouldn't it be nice to have something like that on the land near the Cadet building, possibly combined with a community facility. One can dream!

25/07/13, HC: Concerns over proposed housing development in north Winchester
18/07/13, HC: Winchester is left half a million pounds in will

15/07/13, DE: Developers put Littleton housing plan up for consultation12/07/13, HC: Big interest from developers in Hampshire Police HQ in Winchester
11/07/13, HC: Landowner proposes housing in Winchester green gap
03/07/13, HC: Future of Stanmore's New Queen's Head to be examined by council survey
02/07/13, HC: Winchester's new council homes project on track, officers insist

All of these article links (and many more) can also be found on our Media tab.

Please don't forget to write to the Winchester City Councillors to urge them 
to NOT build on the Abbotts Barton parks!

(Photo taken by one of our neighbours at Octavia's Orchard, see

Friday, 12 July 2013

What can YOU do to save the parks?

It is nice to have a group of people who run a campaign to save a park. It is also great that we got more than 500 signatures on our petition. We've been on the radio and in the papers. We have been to council meetings and had speakers on our behalf there.

However, Winchester City Council is not interested in what we are saying and some questions have never received answers - as apparently to them it seems like a campaign by just a few people.

So, this is where everybody who has an opinion on losing the parks in Abbotts Barton comes in, that includes YOU! We simply cannot keep going without more people having their say individually!

The good news is, that it is actually quite easy to have your say!

You don't need to call anybody or speak at a council meeting, you don't need to be on the radio or in the papers. All it takes is a short letter or an email to some or all of the people we have listed on our Action! tab. There is no need to worry about your writing skills or whether it needs to be very formal. All you need to do is to write something that lets the councillors at Winchester City Council know what you think about their plans. If you could include that you 'object' to some or all of their plans, they have to take it into consideration. To help you along we have compiled a list of items that you may use and change as you see fit. Use as many as you like and if you find other good reasons please add them to your message too!

You could also let US know what other reasons for objection you have given to the Council, and we would also be very grateful to receive a copy of your letter if you are happy with letting us have it. Our contact details can be found via the Contact page.

Here is an example letter:

Dear Sir/Madam,

I am writing to object to the building of houses on parts of the main park in Abbotts Barton and the land at Dyson Drive as outlined on your website

The reason(s) for my objection is/are
[insert your reason(s) here]

[Your name and full address]

You might not like (in no particular order):
  • that the councillors have decided to start building on the empty green spaces ('greenfield sites') at Dyson Drive and Charles Close/Chaundler Road better known as THE PARK, instead of investigating further into the available 'brownfield sites' (like the garage areas). The green spaces were recommended for appropriation at the last Housing Delivery Committee meeting of 22 May.
    (The land at Hillier Way is also part of that plan but this group does not object to that site for new houses. Of course you can do that as an individual!)
    If money should run out on this project, we might never see any houses and/or new parking and storage facilities on the garage sites as promised - but we will have lost a big chunk of parkland

  • that the plans for appropriation include about a third of the main park which would allow for more buildings at a later time. (We have been told that the row of houses planned along Charles Close would be all that's going to be built - so under no circumstances would we like this area to be extended, which could be done easily once the land has been appropriated.)

  • that there are no tree preservation orders on the big (and small) trees in the park. This means they can be removed if councillors decided to build more houses there in the future.

  • that the councillors are reducing the amount of play area available for the whole of Winchester and not just Abbotts Barton by building on our parks without really giving anything back that makes up for the loss. Once it is gone, it will be gone forever and Winchester is already low on the amount of space it should provide for sports and play according to its Open Space Strategy. On top of everything else this Strategy is just undergoing a change that sees numbers for land to be held available for sports and play even more reduced - see WCC meeting notes from 26 June).

  • that the councillors want to build on the main park and in exchange offer the land around the cadet hut as a new green area. As pointed out before by the Save The Parks Group this is not trading like for like as the park is an ideal area for unstructured and safe play that can easily be overseen, whereas the 'cadet site' is not suitable for activities like this (and was given up in the past once before because anti-social behaviour problems). The latest maps by WCC have shown plans for an extension to the existing fenced in play area, but this is not really needed when you have the big park to play.

  • that there are not many play spaces for 'older children' to start with in the north of Winchester, reducing the size of our well overlooked park could contribute to more anti-social behaviour as it drives young people away.

  • that it was expressed in a council meeting that the big park is mainly a dog walking area - this is certainly not the case! It is used by many different people for many different purposes (e.g. ball and other games, sun bathing, picnics, sledging, community events, children's birthday parties, animal watching, etc.). A lot of these activities would and could not be done in the land behind the Cadet hut.

  • that with no road or other natural border around any new houses on the park, people will have to keep some distance from the new buildings when playing, so this means we will effectively lose a third of the big park if the councillors go ahead with their plans of building houses along Charles Close.

  • that the map 'dotting' process at the consultation event was not a proper democratic means of getting an opinion as some people were using a lot more dots than they were supposed to do and nobody was supervising this. On top of that the yellow dots were later interpreted as people showing support for certain sites - but at the event we were told the yellow dots stood for 'not as bad' as the other areas. So really only a dot free area would have been a supported area.
    In addition to that the councillors had the land around the cadet hut included in the consultation map despite later saying in a council meeting that they were not expecting to be able to build there because of the status of the land and the location outside of the estate. This could have been found out before going through the consultation exercise and gave the residents the wrong feeling of having a choice.

  • that the councillors are reducing the amount of parkland despite many houses in Abbotts Barton not having adequate gardens. The gardens are small because there was so much parkland available at the time when they were built! Especially at Charles Close some houses have only tiny patio sized gardens and the flats have no gardens at all. The parks were designed as an integral part of the overall original estate's housing scheme to provide sufficient outdoor amenity close by for those 47 dwellings as well as serving valuable play amenity for the rest of the estate which also have smaller than usual gardens.
    We don't know it yet, but any new council houses built might not have a lot of garden space either, so the open spaces will be needed more than ever!

  • that the planned houses on the park along Charles Close are in a difficult location to build something that goes with the surroundings. In urban planning terms building on the side of Charles Close can never be an acceptable intervention into the existing street and parkscape scenes - destroying timeless rules of acceptable urban morphology - proposing houses sideways on to the road and park is completely unacceptable.

  • that the current plan for Dyson Drive fills up half of the space with houses, leaving the rest as 'play space' - we all know full well that this area will not be used much for playing once there are houses so close nearby, the 'no ball games' signs will surely come soon after. Thinking this through logically, it would actually make more sense to fill this space up with houses and not use any space on the big park instead as that leaves more proper play space altogether.
    (The Save The Parks Group would like this space AND the big park not to be built on at all but again: you can take any view on this as an individual.)

  • that that the councillors seem to ignore that the RT. 1/ RT. 2 Status (Important Open Amenity Area / Recreation Area) was bestowed on Dyson Green for a valid reason which has not altered in time and is surely now even more valid with all the new housing going up (e.g. Abbotts Walk and the new development across Worthy Road at the former MOD site) since that original designation.
    (The RT. 1/ RT. 2 status can be seen on the policy maps available via the Local Plan Part 1, adopted by Winchester City Council in March 2013! For your convenience: Policy map key / Northeast Winchester policy map.) On this same map, the whole park area in Abbotts Barton is shown as 'countryside'.

  • that the settings and approaches to the city are at stake. The main park forms part of the river Itchen’s green corridor into Winchester when entering by foot from the North on the Kings Way footpath. The river Itchen is a Special Area of Conservation and is on the border of the South Downs National Park.

  • that the number of council houses to be built on the park is quite negligible anyway. The councillors should rethink their strategy to find better suited places where they can build more new houses/flats than in Abbotts Barton. Winchester City Council could also possibly re-develop existing buildings (e.g. Avalon House) and find other brownfield areas like the piece of land at Bar End that is currently in use as a council parking area.

There will be a Cabinet meeting coming Wednesday (17 July) and one of the business items are the minutes of the Cabinet (Housing Delivery) Meeting held 22 May (note: at this point we are not sure if this meeting will have any influence on when the appropriation process will start as it seems to focus on other items from the notes). It would be great if you could write to the councillor(s) of your choice before that date - but if you don't manage to do that, please write anyway! It is important that your voice gets heard!

It is also important that as many people as possible hear about the plans, please let all your neighbours and friends know.

Whatever you do and if it's only a short letter/message to one or many councillors, thank you for your efforts!

Monday, 8 July 2013

Fromond Road no longer part of Westman Road project!

An interesting piece of news for our neighbours in Weeke from the Winchester City Council Facebook page:
Westman Road update: Following the consultation event held in June about the proposed development of land at Westman Road in Weeke, the option of improving the open spaces on Fromond Road is no longer being considered as part of this project. Improvements to Fromond Road require much more consultation, design work and significant funding.
Update 11 July:
We are meeting pupils at Henry Beaufort School on today to find out their views regarding the options for improving open spaces in Weeke to compensate for the loss of the open space at Westman Road.

Sunday, 7 July 2013

Friday, 5 July 2013

WCC committee and meeting changes!

Winchester City Council changed some Committee names and responsibilities and therefore meetings. So again a summary of those meetings that might be interesting to us:

When I was double-checking for the 15 July meeting on the (old) Cabinet (Housing Delivery) Committee I found a link to a new page for a newly set up Cabinet (Housing) Committee, explaining this:
At Cabinet on 16 May 2013 it was agreed that the work of the Cabinet (Housing Delivery) Committee be combined with the work of the Housing Committee into one new Cabinet (Housing) Committee with revised terms of reference and membership as set out below.
The next meeting for this new committee will be on Wednesday 18 September, at 10am. The agenda will be made available on 10 September on the meeting page.

The meeting happening on Monday 15 July will now be a Cabinet meeting, starting at 9:30am, and the meeting agenda should become available later TODAY. Here is some info from the Cabinet page:
The Cabinet stands apart from the other committees, and is responsible for all operational decisions which would previously have been taken by service committees.

The Cabinet is also responsible for taking all decisions on the following;
(i) Leisure, Arts, Heritage and Community matters
(ii) Environmental Health matters
(iii) Transportation matters
(iv) Housing matters

(v) Forward Planning matters

For your information, in addition to the Cabinet meeting there will also be a full Council meeting on Wednesday 17 July at 7pm. The agenda will be available 9 July.

Monday, 24 June 2013

In conversation with Steve Brine

So this morning the writer of this blog entry met with a campaigner from Weeke (more info) to talk with Steve Brine (MP for Winchester and Chandler's Ford) about the loss of green space in general and also about the housing developments in Weeke and Abbotts Barton in particular. Shame I forgot to bring my camera.

Friday, 21 June 2013

A poem about the park

A beautiful contribution from one of our neighbours:

I wake in the morning to a beautiful sound
For a chorus of birdsong is bringing me round
Too numerous to mention, they twitter with glee
This wonder of nature, so blissful and free

There are Foxes and Deer, and Ducks by the score
Who daringly venture right up to your door
Squirrels, Woodpeckers, even Jays can be seen
An Egret, a Heron and Swans on the stream

An abundance of Wildlife, such a tranquil scene
Majestic Chestnut trees, a beautiful Green
Children playing and having such fun
A big open space in which they can run

I may never be rich, but who can compare
All this beauty layed before me here
As each day unfolds and I look to above
I whisper a prayer for this place I so love

I hope many can share my feelings and enjoy these thoughts to keep it as a park. After all its the only Community facility we have.

Thursday, 20 June 2013

Upcoming Council meetings

Any member of the Public can attend Council Meetings. You are entitled to ask questions; for more information on Public Participation please click here.

All Winchester City Council meetings are listed on the Winchester City Council website.

Upcoming meetings that might include relevant items for the planned housing development in Abbotts Barton:

26/06/2013 - 10.00AM - Cabinet
Click on the date to see location plus meeting agenda and reports.

15/07/2013 - 10.00AM - Cabinet (Housing Delivery) Committee
Agenda and reports to be available from 5 July.

The more people attend these meetings the better - we need to show that we are interested in what is happening in our estate!

(This information and more is also available on the Action! tab.)

Are 'consultations' what the term promises?

Following the local news, it seems Winchester City Council and Winchester residents are quite disconnected; here are just a few example articles from Hampshire Chronicle from the last months (for more see the Media tab):

Wednesday, 19 June 2013

A plea on behalf of Weeke residents

As you might have heard Winchester City Council (WCC) is not only trying to build on parkland in Abbotts Barton, there are also other green areas in Winchester earmarked for new housing (see our Media tab for related articles). One of them is at Westman Road, Weeke.

Tuesday, 18 June 2013

Save The Parks in Abbotts Barton on Radio Solent this morning

Our Save The Parks campaign had a few minutes of air time on Radio Solent this morning at roughly 7:15am. The show is available to listen to on the BBC Radio website for seven days:

BBC Radio Solent - Julian Clegg 18/06/2013

We are on at about 40 minutes in and are also mentioned in the News 1 hour in afterwards.

Just a few points regarding what Andrew Palmer from Housing Delivery brings up:

Thursday, 13 June 2013

22 May Housing Delivery meeting minutes appeared at last

The meeting minutes from the last Housing Delivery meeting have finally shown up on the meeting page.

As said before, none of the questions and concerns from Abbotts Barton representatives had been answered on the day and we will have to wait for the committee to see another report before we will know whether our parks will be appropriated:

"That a report be brought back to the Committee at a later date to determine, in the light of any representations received and detailed consideration of the financial implications,, whether or not these sites should be appropriated for planning purposes pursuant to Section 122(2) of the Local Government Act 1972."

You can find the meeting minutes on the Committee's meeting page from 22 May.

Video from March

The Abbotts Barton housing development video that was produced in March by a young journalist has been found alive and well on her own YouTube profile:

CORRECTED window graphic

A while ago we published an image to print out and stick in your window to show your support to the Save The Parks campaign. Rather embarrassingly there was a wrong web address on it. This has been corrected and the updated file can now be downloaded via the Ressources tab. Thank you to everybody who is showing their support!

Updated Window graphic

Thursday, 6 June 2013

What's happening?

We are still waiting for the meeting minutes from the last Housing Delivery meeting in which it was recommended to go ahead with the appropriation process. At the meeting all of the questions relating to the development in Abbotts Barton asked by members of the public and the St. Bartholomew Ward Councillor Dominic Hiscock were heard but not answered. On the day there was also no information offered about the outstanding questions in regards to the "Cadet site" and the Garage sites.

As per the meeting, the order of sites to be built on is this for now:

1) Hillier Way site
2) Dyson Drive site and The Park (Charles Close side)
3) Garage sites

This order is simply based on how easy it is for the council to build on the sites.

Here is some additional information from today's Councillor's Surgery with Jim Maynard and Dominic Hiscock:

Winchester City Council is commissioning architects to make proper plans for the new houses they want to build in Abbotts Barton. (This is needed before the appropriation can take place and also for planning permission to be given.)

A report has been produced why the Cadet site is not going to be included in the list of sites for building. It can be found with other information on the council's web page for New Council Housing - Abbotts Barton, here is the direct link: Planning Report on the Scrubland at Hillier Way, May 2013.

There is no report about the usage of the garages yet.

Wednesday, 5 June 2013

Finally, the Hampshire Chronicle article

It took a while but here is the online Hampshire Chronicle version of the press photo shoot, slightly updated with the news about Mr Tait and with a different photo:

Hundreds protest against plans to build homes on Winchester parkland

Tuesday, 28 May 2013

Today's news: Cllr Ian Tait is standing down as Portfolio Holder for Housing and New Homes with immediate effect

There was a very surprising press release from Winchester City Council this afternoon, stating that Councillor Ian Tait is standing down! We have to wait for more news to find out what exactly this means to us but a lot if not all of us will be very happy not to have to deal with Mr Tait on this again for the foreseeable future.

Please see for yourself:

WCC press release: Cabinet member stands down
Daily Echo: Head of housing at Winchester City Council stands down

Monday, 27 May 2013

Good day, lots of people!

Thank you to everybody who turned up to our press photo shoot today!

There were many and there would have been more (giving short notice and organising for a Bank Holiday Monday has its drawbacks: quite a number of people said they were going away for the long weekend when we approached them end of last week).

Wednesday, 22 May 2013

Press photo shoot - we need YOU!

This Monday (27 May 2013) at 3pm there will be a photo shoot with the press: Hampshire Chronicle are coming to take a photo of the community opposing the building on the main park in Abbotts Barton.

If you can make it, please come along, we need as many people as possible! We'd like lots of banners and placards too, so please try and make one (or get your kids to!) and bring it along!

Wednesday, 15 May 2013

Upcoming Cabinet (Housing Delivery) Committee meeting (22 May)

The next Cabinet (Housing Delivery) Committee meeting will be on Wednesday 22 March at 10am in the Walton Suite, Guildhall, Winchester. Meeting documents have been published yesterday on the Committee's meeting web page.

Amongst other business the appropriation of land in Abbotts Barton is on the agenda. (“Appropriation” is the process by which the Council formally changes the purpose for which a piece of land is held, from one purpose to another.)

Thursday, 7 March 2013

Trading the Abbotts Barton parkland against land at the 'Cadet Site' is not trading like for like!

The Winchester City Councillors are proposing to use the 'Cadet Site' area as an area to compensate for the loss of play area in the parks of Abbotts Barton. (Their proposals are available for viewing on the 27 February meeting page.)

However, this trade is not welcomed by parents in Abbotts Barton.

Wednesday, 27 February 2013

No new insights at the Cabinet (Housing Delivery) Committee meeting

Today we had the Cabinet (Housing Delivery) Committee meeting and Abbotts Barton was talked about for about an hour with two speakers from the general public. Nothing has changed on the proposed housing development plans but the committee will have to explain a bit better why the Cadet Site apparently isn't suitable for building houses and also what exactly they want to do with the garages in Abbotts Barton. The Abbotts Barton Planning Framework was agreed as a guide. More detail about what was said will be in the meeting minutes from the Council when they are added to the meeting page.

Monday, 25 February 2013

Cabinet (Housing Delivery) Committee meeting 27 February

The council has published several files about the planned housing development in Abbotts Barton for their meeting on Wednesday, 27 February 2013. Please take a look for yourself to see what is on the agenda. All files can be accessed from the council's meeting page.

Support of two-thirds majority for Cadet Site

Parallel to the Save The Parks petition we have had another one going round the households in Abbotts Barton to find out how many people would support new houses on the so called Cadet Site (near the football club): a two-thirds majority of Residents (so far) back the use of the Cadet Site for the Council Housing Proposals destined for the Parks. Please read our community proposal issued to the Council Friday 22 February.

Friday, 22 February 2013

500+ people sign petition!

Since we have started with the petitions in early February, both online and on paper, signatures have been coming in steadily: to date we have had over 500 people sign to oppose housing developments on the designated sites S7 and S4!

Today we have sent a letter to Winchester City Council detailing why we believe these specific housing developments would be detrimental to Abbotts Barton. Please find a copy for you to read here.

If you haven't done so yet, please sign our petition to save the parks in Abbotts Barton - and don't forget to share either! Thank you!

Thank you so much for supporting our campaign!

Sunday, 17 February 2013

Winchester is short of play areas already!

The Winchester City Council's Open Space Strategy 2012/13 has this information about available land for play in Winchester (PDF file - see top of page 106):

Adequacy of Land for Play and Sports (Hectares)

Local Plan Requirement for Play:30.00
Existing Area for Play:17.88

According to that Winchester is 12.12 Hectares short of land suitable for play!

If you haven't done so yet please sign our petition to save the parks in Abbotts Barton - and don't forget to share either! Thank you!

Thursday, 14 February 2013

Possible delay in evaluation of consultations feedback

In today's Focus from the Liberal Democrat Party was a short article mentioning the consultations about the Council Housing development plans in Abbotts Barton, saying that the City Council housing bosses are now looking at the suggestions made. New plans were to be presented by the end of February, but apparently it looks like more work is necessary to incorporate the feedback. There could be a delay until March.

If you haven't done so yet please sign our petition to save the parks in Abbotts Barton - and don't forget to share either! Thank you!

Friday, 8 February 2013

Online petition live!

What can you do to make your view known and help protect your Parks?

For a start, please sign our online petition:

Winchester City Council: Save the Parks in Abbotts Barton from Housing Development

Please note: each person in your house should sign! Every signature counts!

Wednesday, 6 February 2013

The Abbotts Barton Save the Parks Group

Welcome to our new website!

The Abbotts Barton Save the Parks Group has been formed by members of the community who all live in Abbotts Barton in Winchester and are concerned about the Council's housing plans, particularly the plans to build on the main park and the green at Dyson Drive. These green open areas are enjoyed not only by the local residents but by people from all over Winchester and neighbouring communities like Kings Worthy!

On 27 February the Cabinet (Housing Delivery) Committee will meet to consider the draft masterplan for Abbotts Barton.

It is very important that you let the Council know as soon as possible what you think about these plans. If you are unsure about how to do that please take a look at the Action! tab.

For more information about the City Council's plans please use the tabs above - the Plans tab will take you to latest information published by the City Council.

Very soon there will be an online petition here for you to sign. If you would like to be notified by email and haven't signed up for that yet, please let us know via our Contact form.