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Speaking at a Council or Committee meeting

Venue: Assembly Room - Oxford Town Hall. View directions

Contact: Jennifer Thompson, Committee and Members Services Officer  email, tel 01865 252275

No. Item


Hinksey culvert - Network Rail proposed works: 15/03703/FUL

This briefing for Oxford City Councillors will be held at the Town Hall, St Aldate's on Wednesday 27 April starting at 6.00pm and ending by 7.30pm.


This is open to members of the public. All are welcome to attend. There is no need to contact the Council beforehand.


The briefing will be attended by council officers, Network Rail and the Environment Agency.


There will be an opportunity for councillors to ask questions.


Update on 22 April: The application will be considered by the West Area Planning Committee on 3 May at 2pm. The officer’s report and meeting details including how to register to speak to the committee are now available at .


There is an opportunity for members of the public to comment on the planning application in the usual way* on the Council’s website before the formal consultation closes on 22 April.




The Council has received additional information from Network Rail on the environmental assessment for this proposal and advertised the planning application.


Network Rail proposes to raise the rail track bed in the Hinksey area as part of its strategic investment and electrification programme, in order to reduce the risk of flooding affecting services in the corridor, where there has been major disruption previously. Whilst some of the work could be undertaken under Network Rail’s own planning powers (permitted development) the associated drainage works affect land outside its ownership and requires planning permission.


The work requires a major closure of the railway line (10 days) and includes a new culvert which, at the request of the Environment Agency, also includes additional capacity which could be made available if it was decided to connect into a future Western Flood Relief Conveyance scheme. If the culvert forms part of the Western Conveyance this ‘future proofing’ seeks to avoid a further line closure and significant additional costs. However, the options, route and funding for the Conveyance, and all necessary consents, are part of a separate process and are not the subject of this current application.      


The Council has required an Environmental Statement because of the potential impact of the scheme-particularly in relation to hydrology and flooding in the area. Modelling by Network Rail and the Environment Agency shows that 19 residential properties are potentially affected in a 1 in 100 years’ event with a marginal increase in flooding (between 1-3cm assuming no protection). The flood risk classification for these properties remains unchanged and the majority remain protected by temporary barriers. No additional properties are affected. A potential increase in flooding in designated flood risk areas is a departure from national and local planning policies.  The application has been advertised as such.


The application together with the Environment Agency’s advice and other documentation is published on the planning application pages of the Council’s website under ref 15/03703/FUL. The Environment Agency advises that it will also be providing additional supplementary information.


If you have any queries about this briefing please contact Jennifer Thompson, Committee and Members’  ...  view the full agenda text for item 1.