Readers of Volesoft.com are already aware of the goings on in Mill Street, Oxford – some salacious details were made famous by Chaucer in his Canterbury Tales – the Miller’s Tale. Continue reading
Tag Archives: oxford mail
A missive from the egregious Said Business School (SBS)is holding a “consultation” on the future of the Old Power Station, on the Thames, just a slingshot away from Mill Street.
The message, in a bottle, is reproduced below.
But there are things the SBS doesn’t say, as well as things it does say, with implications for the original inhabitants of Old Osney Island, that’s us folk on Arthur Street, Mill Street and the rest.
The towering edifice was used in times of yore to test Concorde engines and then to host exhibits from the Ruskin. Then there was a health scare because it seemed to hold rare chemicals and stuff stored away.
The SBS didn’t really respond to FOI requests, I think you’ll find.
Anyway, the document issued for the consultation, below, said SBS is pushing ahead with a proposal offering “bespoke conferencing facilities. It doesn’t say what the impact on the area will be, how many bricks will go, and how the poor people on Arthur Street will feel about huge lorries making a right turn from there past Kite 2.0, also known as the Porterhouse now and the effect it will have on both Mill Street and the Botley Road.
Hey, I guess we residents will have the chance to forewarn the planners ahead of the “conference”. It’s all about the regeneration of West Oxford, you know. ♥
On the 14th of February this year, at 4:45 PM, a huge explosion hit West Oxford.
I was in the wazzeria at the time, but the explosion was so great my windows bowed and I almost evacuated myself. I didn’t. I finished my wee and checked things out.
It seems some crazy greezer had blown up a house in Gibbs Crescent. He killed himself with the explosion – luckily no one else – and we’re waiting for the inquest to give us some rhyme or reason. And have been waiting for some time now. For the inquest.
I have some friends down in Gibbs Crescent, so have been following this closely. Susanna Pressel and Colin Cook, the local Labour councillors, have involved themselves and got their faces in the Oxford Mail.
But, although I am by nature an anarcho-syndicalist – read trade unionist and NUJ member for that, I thought I’d drop a line to our newly elected LibDem MP – that Layla Moran – who seems to have pursued this story in an exemplary way. I draw your attention, for example, to the almost complete lack of social housing she highlights, and to the big big question.
When A2Dominion “rehouses” the Gibb Crescent residents, where are they going to go? ♥
Ms Moran wrote to me on Friday:
“Further to our previous correspondence, and particularly focusing on Gibbs Crescent, I have now received responses from Dawn Wightman, Director of Housing for A2Dominion, and Patsy Dell, Head of Planning Services at Oxford City Council.
“Ms Wightman confirms that any plans to redevelop Gibbs Crescent would include 50% affordable housing, consisting mostly of 1 and 2 bed apartments with some 3 bed properties. She has not indicated what proportion of these affordable properties would have social rents. The properties are described as being significantly larger than those currently at Gibbs Crescent, but A2Dominion do not confirm how many of the new homes would be 1 bed.
“A2Dominion have also outlined a number of the benefits that they feel the redevelopment of Gibbs Crescent could bring, though have not indicated what assurances they intend to provide existing tenants.
“Ms Dell confirms that Oxford City Council has not yet had any detailed preapplication discussions with A2Dominion regarding proposals to redevelop Gibbs Crescent. I understand that officers at the Council held a meeting with A2Dominion, in which they discussed the need for public consultation on any proposals, but that by early December the Council had not had any follow up to this meeting.
“One of the issues Gibbs Crescent residents have raised with me is the serious shortage of social housing available in Oxford. In light of this, I asked Ms Dell to confirm how many social properties are currently available for let. She has replied that out of 7746 Oxford City Council properties and 3753 housing association properties, there are only 14 currently advertised as being available to let, with 2858 households currently on the housing register.
“I share the concern expressed by many Gibbs Crescent residents that these proposals would reduce the stock of social housing available in Oxford, rather than increasing it as is needed, and appreciate the impact that redeveloping Gibbs Crescent could have on existing tenants, including those who have lived there for many years.
“I hope that this information is useful. I will continue to pursue these issues with the Council and A2Dominion, and will share any updates I receive with you.
Layla Moran MP
Member of Parliament for Oxford West and AbingdonLayla Moran
Member of Parliament for Oxford West and Abingdon
A WAVE OF CRIME is sweeping across a place called Banbury and it’s affecting Oxford and Bicester too.
As you can see from this story in the Oxford Mail, criminals are receiving tough love from the authorities in what’s obviously a major crackdown at the home of the Banbury Cake.
We’re not entirely sure why Banbury residents Emma Ashburn and Marie Biston got fined more than two other folk in Bicester and in Oxford. But, rest assured, Google, sorry BBC vans, are watching you. ♥
I AM NOT entirely sure the venerable Oxford Mail got the whole story about this, but hey, WTF. We only live here. ♥
Where there’s a will, there is a lay.
So starts this wee tale of Roger Dudman Way.
Head west from Domino’s, through the tunnel of love,
Be shaken, if not stirred by rattling freight trains above,
And, flanked by Mick’s Café and the YHA
See the new glory that’s called the Roger Dudman’s Way.
Mick’s Café has shut, I am sorry to say.
‘Twas the jewel in the crown of Roger Dudman’s Way.
Roger Dudman, the man who inspired the route
Was Lord Mayor of Oxford, and a leftie, to boot.
Of Dudman’s life we know little, it’s true,
But he held a grand post so was one of the few
To wear the great chain, and preceded by mace
Trouped through the town with consummate grace.
The latest Lord Mayor fell flat on his face,
For saying the word “sexy” that’s quite a disgrace.
And so we conclude this Dudman paeon,
To celebrate the daze of the Dudman aeon,
With hymns and raptures day by every day
To celebrate Mr Dudman and his now famous Way!
I’ve lived in Oxford for over four years now, and I am a regular reader of the Oxford Mail, although I still have to see your much vaunted “loyalty card” tip up in the post, as promised when I first subscribed. At least the paper turns up every day now.
I find your columns very amusing and sometimes informative too, but that’s not why I am writing this letter.
I’ve been a journalist myself since I was a kid, and have edited a number of publications myself, but I am alarmed that a “world class city” with “world class toilets” and academics to boot has a daily newspaper with so many typographic errors.
Every day when I scan the pages of the Oxford Mail, I detect typo after typo, almost suggesting to me and no doubt to your other readers that you need a good sub-editor – sometimes it occurs to me that you don’t have one.
Editors pass pages – I’ve done it myself many a time, and if the subs don’t pick up the typos the editor and the news editor surely should see them. I realise that in these cash strapped days costs are high and revenues are low, but my senses are assaulted by your abuse of the English language, daily.
Mike Magee ♥
A COMPANY bought hacks lunch in the pouring rain and delivered a Yule cake and loads of sweeties when we turned up at its gig. ◊