Oxford Flood Alleviation Scheme - Updates and CPO Information

Closed 31 May 2021

Opened 17 May 2021


Latest News

Compulsory Purchase Order

We have made our Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO) for the Oxford Flood Alleviation Scheme. A CPO is a legal process that allows land, property and rights of access to be obtained from a landowner when there is a compelling case that the land is needed in the public interest and can only be applied for where land or access is vital for a scheme to function. It is normal practice when planning a scheme of this scale to run a CPO to ensure all land essential to the working of the scheme is acquired.  

If you have not been contacted by us regarding ownership or access to land but you think you should have, please email us. More information on the CPO process and compensation can be found on the CPO system page.

We have provided the Statement of Reasons and accompanying maps and documents for the CPO for you below:

The CPO Schedule

The CPO Schedule document sets out the order in terms of its purpose and the land plots to which the order will apply. Schedule 1 sets out the land plots which we intend to purchase (except exchange land* or additional land and new rights). 

Schedule 2 sets out land plots where the exchange land* and additional land to be purchased and vested. 

*Exchange land refers to land that we intend to purchase as open space land for public access to replace the open space land which is required for the scheme.

More Information

The locations of the land plots referred to in the CPO schedule are indicated on the CPO maps. To use this map, please note the scheme area is divided into 16 sheets. Please look at the last page to determine which sheet to use to locate a land plot.  

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This document sets out our justification for using our powers to make the CPO in order to acquire land, and rights over land, for the purposes of constructing and operating the Oxford Flood Alleviation Scheme.  

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The Environmental Statement is a useful reference whilst reading the CPO documents. It can be found on the Oxfordshire County Council ePlanning system, planning reference: MW.0027/22. 

Planning Application Submitted

The planning application for the scheme has been submitted to Oxfordshire County Council as the local planning authority. The council consulted on the planning application from 7 April to 9 May 2022 and subsequently submitted a Regulation 25 request for further information about the application. The response to this has been submitted and the council will hold a consultation on our response in due course. All the information submitted to the council is available to read on the Oxfordshire County Council ePlanning system, planning reference: MW.0027/22.

Please click on each item below for more detail.

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We have conducted wildlife surveys across the scheme area to ensure that we are avoiding and minimising disturbance to plants and animals as much as we can.

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When we designed the Oxford Flood Alleviation Scheme, we looked at moving the excavated material such as earth and gravel by rail. At the time of our previous planning application, the rail sidings were already in use, and we planned instead to move surplus material by road. Since then, local residents asked us to re-look at the rail option.
We are submitting a separate planning application for a temporary access track to the Hinksey Rail Sidings. The track will run from our proposed working area for the Oxford Flood Alleviation Scheme, north of South Hinksey village, to the rail sidings. If planning permission is granted, we will have the option of removing a significant amount of the waste material off site by rail. Agreements with the operator of Hinksey Rail Sidings will also need to be in place to enable us to remove the waste material.
Removing waste material by rail will reduce traffic pressure on the roads, in particular the A34. The material will be taken to sites which already have planning permission for environmental restoration, such as former quarry sites.
The temporary access track was not included in the main planning application because we do not know whether the rail sidings will be available at the time we need them. Construction cannot commence until all approvals are obtained. Therefore, our main planning application proposes all waste material is transported offsite by road.

More Information

The Environmental Vision is our long-term plan to support the effective management of the Oxford Flood Alleviation Scheme area. We have a detailed programme in place to maintain the scheme operationally and to establish and manage habitats for at least the next 100 years.
Once we have all the necessary approvals and are nearing construction of the scheme, we will appoint an environmental partner who will lease the Environment Agency owned land once the scheme is in place. They will be responsible for looking after the wildlife and landscapes of the scheme area in the long term. They will work alongside our operational team to bring additional environmental enhancements, involve local people and community groups, establish opportunities for scientific research and visit schools to teach children about the work we do to protect and enhance the environment.
Earth Trust is helping us set the foundations for this approach. They are advising us on the development of plans for how the eventual land management of the completed scheme should function to deliver the long term environmental, climate and human health and wellbeing benefits of the scheme.


Keep up to date with our latest news

You can read our e-newsletter to find out the latest updates for our scheme. Email us at Oxfordscheme@environment-agency.gov.uk to request to be added to our mailing list to receive our e-newsletter directly in the future.

Next Steps

Subject to all approvals, we currently anticipate construction to begin in 2024. We then expect construction to take up to 5 years. The A423 Kennington bridge in the southern end of the scheme area needs to be replaced by Oxfordshire County Council due to deterioration. The bridge is crucial to the Oxford Flood Alleviation Scheme as floodwater from the scheme needs to pass underneath the bridge to rejoin the River Thames. So, we also need to coordinate our construction with the replacement of the A423 Kennington bridge.

Construction would then start from the north and we anticipate it will take 3 years to complete the areas north of Old Abingdon Road. We can begin building the southern part of the scheme once Oxfordshire County Council have completed the replacement A423 Kennington Railway Bridge. For more information on the A423 bridge, please refer to the Oxfordshire County Council website.

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