Have your say on sport and leisure in South Oxfordshire

South Oxfordshire District Council is looking at the future of sports and leisure facilities in the district and wants to hear from the people who use them, now and in the future.

The council has undertaken an extensive assessment of the leisure facilities in the district such as running tracks, sports halls and football pitches as well as playgrounds and allotments. 

This sports and leisure strategy is intended to inform planners and developers up until 2033 so that they include all the necessary leisure provision for the area’s growing population.  

Now the council is looking for feedback from the public on the documents and has set up a survey (https://survey.southandvale.gov.uk/s/Leisure2033/) for public views.

Everyone has until midnight on Monday 7 May to add their comments. 

The following highlights some of the findings from the strategy:

• Rugby is played increasingly by women and girls and while there are enough pitches, the changing facilities will need improvements.

• There are two gymnastics clubs in South Oxfordshire each with more than 1,000 affiliated members. Both clubs have outgrown their sites and if their popularity continues they will need new centres.

• While there are enough running tracks, 90 per cent of people who run don’t use tracks and so traffic-free routes should be developed.

• Hockey has become so popular that England Hockey anticipate there could be almost twice as many teams in the area by 2033.

• Of the 66 allotments in the district, 42 are fully used, others need improvements.

• Currently there are no 3G football turf pitches in the district, so the leisure strategy has suggested that up to six full size 3G pitches are needed to meet the growing demand for football training.

South Oxfordshire District Council cabinet member for community services Cllr Lynn Lloyd said: “We would really encourage residents to respond to this survey to let us know that what we have compiled is a true reflection of the facilities we have now and what it seems we will need in the future.

“We know how important sport and leisure is to our wellbeing, so it is vital that our planners and developers are well informed when it comes to this part of people’s lives.”

After the consultation closes, the council will publish a report which summarises the feedback received.  

The council expects to review and update the action plan annually in conjunction with Sport England, national governing bodies of sport and Parish and Town Councils.

For more information on the Leisure Strategy, the documents can be viewed here. (http://www.southoxon.gov.uk/services-and-advice/sports-leisure-and-arts/leisure-strategy-2033)

Fly-tipper prosecuted

A 43-year-old man has been ordered to pay more than £1,600 after illegally dumping a load of garden waste, which included cannabis plants, in Oxfordshire.  South Oxfordshire District Council successfully prosecuted Marenglen Dulaj of Magnolia Court, Swindon, on 27 March.  He was ordered to pay a fine and other costs at Oxford Magistrates’ Court after pleading guilty to the charge of using a motor vehicle to fly-tip.  Magistrates heard that on 21 April 2017 on land off Exlade Street between Woodcote and Checkendon, Dulaj allowed his van to be used to dump rubbish sacks containing compost, plant pots, plastic bottles, plant food containers, cardboard and green waste consisting of cannabis stalks and leaves.  While he told the court that he had loaned the vehicle to a friend, he was still liable as he was the owner of the vehicle at that time.  The court ordered him to pay a fine of £850, a victim surcharge of £85 and £500 costs and £201.42 compensation. The sum totalled £1,636.42.  Councillor Elizabeth Gillespie South Oxfordshire District Council cabinet member responsible for Environmental Protection said: “Fly-tipping is an extremely selfish act which scars the countryside and has an aesthetic and financial cost for residents. We will always prosecute offenders whenever possible.”

Good news for the garden ‘spring clean’!

South Oxfordshire residents who are signed up for brown bin collections can put out twice as much garden waste during one week next month.

South Oxfordshire District Council is giving those who are part of the paid-for service the opportunity to put out the equivalent of one extra bin’s worth of garden waste (around three large bin bags) during the week commencing 9 April.  Residents should leave their extra garden waste out in bin liners or sacks beside their brown bins on their usual collection day.  Trade waste bags will not be accepted.

Cllr Elizabeth Gillespie, cabinet member for housing and environment at South Oxfordshire District Council, said: “The garden waste service is very popular. We are glad that we are able to offer extra help at this time of year when people clear their gardens after winter.  We’d like to encourage everyone to make use of the extra collection.”

See garden waste – south for more information.

** Please note that boxes and bags left on the extra garden waste days are left at your own discretion and the council will not replace them if missing or damaged.

Easter Bank Holiday waste collection update

As with every bank holiday, South Oxfordshire District Council’s waste crews will empty bins on a different days.  For information on revised collection days visit the bank holiday collections on the South Oxfordshire District Council website

People can recycle Easter egg boxes, plastic inserts and foil wrapping – they all go in the green bin. Please put recycling in loose or in clear sacks – the waste team won’t take it away if recycling is not in see-through bags.

In the unlikely case of any leftover chocolate or hot cross buns, people can use them in recipes on the love food hate waste website or put it in the food waste bin where they be recycled to make green electricity and fertiliser.  Residents can also re-use plastic bags to line food caddies.