Residents in Bicester are being asked to give their aspirations, hopes and opinions on the town’s future at a special engagement event.
From Thursday, 10 March until Saturday, 12 March Cherwell District Council will host a public exhibition and consultation in the town centre to help shape Bicester’s identity as a Garden Town.
Residents, traders and shoppers will be invited to visit the event to find out more about the criteria of a Garden Town and complete interactive exercises to submit feedback about what they would like to see improved in the town.
Cllr Barry Wood, leader of Cherwell District Council, said: “Community is at the heart of the Garden Town concept so we want to make sure the community is involved in delivering this vision every step of the way. We want to hear what people would like to see included in their Garden Town; we want to know what’s important to them, what they would like to see improved and how they envision the Bicester of the future.
“We are still at the beginning of this process so by coming along and speaking to us now, people can really help to shape the growth of Bicester over the next 15 years. We are running this event over three days, including a late night opening and weekend, to encourage as many people as possible to come along so we can capture the views, need and aspirations of all members of the community.”
Bicester was awarded Garden Town status by the Government in 2014 which represented a major vote of confidence in the town’s potential. The status recognised the opportunity to deliver energetic town life within the beauty of the countryside while bringing together local people to help shape a vision for the future.
As part of the involvement process, Cherwell is hosting the drop-in exhibition to help people to understand the concept of Garden Town and provide feedback about Bicester’s growth. Information boards, interactive exercises and comment cards will all be available, as will representatives from the council who will be on hand to answer any questions.
The event will be open to the public from 11.30am – 5.30pm on Thursday, 10 March and on Friday, 11 March from 2pm – 8pm. The final day of the exhibition will be on Saturday, 12 March from 10am – 5pm. It will take place in Unit 22 – 23 in Crown Walk, next to WHSmith.
The information collected from the event will be collated and fed into Cherwell’s upcoming Bicester masterplan which will be used to guide growth in the town. The feedback will also be uploaded on to the new Growing Bicester website, which is a partnership project between Cherwell, Bicester Vision, Bicester Town Council and Oxfordshire County Council to keep residents informed about development in the town.