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News  »  Challenge to Grenoble Road Expansion and Local Plan

   Challenge to Grenoble Road Expansion and Local Plan    17 January, 2021

Challenge to Grenoble Road Expansion and Local Plan

Bioabundance Community Interest Company is challenging the South Oxfordshire Local Plan 2035 (LP2035) on the grounds of climate change, improper pressure put on councillors to adopt the plan, excessive and incorrectly calculated housing numbers, and inadequate consultation.
Lawyers from Brighton Legal Clinic have generously helped, without charge, and will continue to do so. They have won previous climate and environmental cases such as the refusal of Heathrow 3rd runway on climate grounds (since overturned).
Bioabundance will apply to the High Court on the 20th January 2021 for judicial review of LP2035, unless South Oxfordshire District Council provide an adequate response to the ‘pre-action protocol’ letter issued 4th January 2021. Although only 20-30% of judicial reviews in planning are successful, the lawyers believe that Bioabundance has a reasonable case.
This is a pioneering action by Bioabundance, and our last chance to put our environment before housebuilder profit in South Oxfordshire. Bioabundance is the only group that has come forward to challenge the Local Plan.
Please support us
Communities all over South Oxfordshire are angry about this plan. It:

  • will be catastrophic for an already massively-weakened natural world
  • will increase carbon emissions markedly in the district
  • will destroy the countryside and our part of the Green Belt around Oxford
  • provides for 4 to 5 times the number of homes that can even be filled, based on current trends (household projections from the Office for National Statistics, see medium.com/@ecomorph)

If we channel our resources into this one challenge, we have a chance of improving the outcome for South Oxfordshire.
Bioabundance needs £10,000 to take this case forward. If it loses, the company might be required to pay the costs of the defendants and their lawyers. At an early stage, it will be ensured that the Aarhus Convention will apply. The Convention ensures for environmental claims that costs that that can be awarded against the litigant are limited, usually to £10,000.
Although Bioabundance is being supported by pro-bono lawyers, it is likely that a barrister would need to be hired for action in the High Court. Our aim would be to raise at least £30,000 in total.
Bioabundance is a fully incorporated company and the risks and liabilities fall entirely on the company. No donor to Bioabundance Community Interest Company is in any way personally liable for any costs the company incurs. Members are liable for up to £1.
What if the action is refused and cannot go forward, or fails at an early stage?
If the legal action fails, you will be given the choice to gift your donation to Bioabundance or receive a pro rata return of your money, subject to you providing contact details.
If the 1700 people who objected to LP2035 were each to contribute £20, we would hit our target. A number of people have already made offers of up to £500 a head. Some are willing for this money to roll forward to future environmental work and legal actions by Bioabundance Community Interest Company.
Please modify form for donations to go direct to Bioabundance or via your local organisation.
Please DONATE to Bioabundance through its sister organisation South Oxfordshire Sustainability:
Business Account Name: South Oxfordshire Sustainability (SOS)
Co-operative Bank
Sort code: 08-92-99  Account no:  65711994
Reference: Your Surname, or the name of your Organisation, with D for donation.
Some banks will validate the account number against the name. Sometimes this validation fails even though the numbers are correct. Please check you have entered the numbers correctly, and if so, click continue. If you have any further problems, please phone Sue on 07913 896 874.
Please write to bioabundance@gmail.com with your name and contact details, and the amount and date of the donation. (This will enable us to process any refunds in the future).
Read more about Bioabundance Community Interest Company at www.bioabundance.org.uk. You can sign up for membership (£10 individual, £25 corporate) by writing to bioabundance@gmail.com.
Please include the following text if required for your audience.
What is Bioabundance Community Interest Company?
Bioabundance sprang from South Oxfordshire Sustainability (SOS). SOS is a community action group with over 70 members, inaugurated in 2011. Members represent environmental action groups across the whole district. Planning has been a main plank of the work of SOS. It has encouraged neighbourhood planning and has worked tirelessly to oppose excessive housing numbers in the district.
Campaigning action by SOS against LP2035 ramped up at the consultation held in January 2019. SOS joined with A Better South Oxfordshire, Need not Greed Oxfordshire and many other community groups to respond to the consultation.
Bioabundance is a sister group to SOS, focusing on the climate change consequences of changes in land-use, and on the question of “How do we restore nature in Oxfordshire to the best state it has been in since the 1950s?” If we fail, the consequences for current and future residents of the county are very, very bleak.
Since Bioabundance became the campaigning arm of SOS, SOS has been providing banking services for Bioabundance.
To-date, Bioabundance has been working on the creation of a regional biodiversity plan, mapping of the urbanisation of the district, and campaigning against LP2035. Bioabundance supports the May 2020 Nature Recovery Network maps produced by Natural England.
The strategy for Bioabundance over the next year will be to challenge breaches in environmental law, be it over air pollution, pollution with sewage, where development threatens a safe and secure climate and environment, and where heritage and conservation status of our buildings and protected areas (such as SSSIs, AONBs and nature reserves) are put under threat.
Other aims will be to engage climate and nature groups across the county, to protect and extend wild areas to join up swathes of land to enable nature recovery. Nature Recovery Networks are crucial to this, and we will work with South Oxfordshire District Council’s planning department to ensure that due regard is paid to Natural England’s maps as the Council produces its version.
Who can join and how?
Bioabundance is a grassroots organisation and welcomes the support of other nature and climate organisations, parish and town councils, churches and other civic societies. As an organisation you can join for £25.
We are attracting many new members and welcome all the wonderful individuals who care so much about our home. You can join as an individual for £10.
Please ask for an application form from bioabundance@gmail.com, and send your membership fee to the SOS account shown above. Put in as a reference, your Surname or the name of your organisation, and M for membership. Please notify bioabundance@gmail.com on payment of your membership fee.
For more information, contact bioabundance@gmail.com. We would be happy to call

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