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Communities worthy of support
8:20am Thursday 8th March 2012 in Letters
Sir – Your correspondent Roger Jenking, of the Oxford Liberal Party, Headington, takes issue with the Council to Protect Rural England’s attempts to prevent inappropriate development of the city of Oxford’s green spaces, arguing that “there are suburbs in the city, not villages; there is urban open space in the city, not farms, country or national parks” (Letters, March 1).
I suggest that he visits Wolvercote sometime. It is a village in every meaningful sense, having a real sense of community, some good pubs, an excellent village shop in the Post Box on Godstow Road, two churches of different flavours, active cultural groups, an annual festival, an excellent primary school, a doctor’s surgery, a post office, etc.
And it is adjacent to Port Meadow and Wolvercote Common, one of the finest accessible green spaces you could find anywhere in southern England: an SSSI that has been continuously grazed for perhaps 4,000 years, where many villagers still exercise their grazing rights — in fact our freezer is full of some very fine beef, raised right there. Wolvercote is within the city, but is as much part of rural England as Wytham is, a mile down the road.
I am not a CPRE member, and I disagree with a lot of what it does — for example its knee-jerk opposition to wind farms.
But in this instance I fully support them: village communities and green spaces within city boundaries are just as worthy of our support and protection as those outside.
Stephen Lunn, Wolvercote