Future Oxfordshire Partnership response to recommendations of the Partnership Scrutiny Panel made on

15 March 2022


The Future Oxfordshire Partnership is requested to provide a response to the recommendations of the Scrutiny Panel for decision at its meeting on 22 March.  




1.     That the Future Oxfordshire Partnership be requested to:

a.    undertake a further Oxfordshire Plan 2050 Regulation 18 consultation.

b.    provide a detailed update on the timetable for the production of the Oxfordshire Plan 2050.

c.    initiate a peer review of the Oxfordshire Growth Needs Assessment.

d.    set out how decisions relating to future housing numbers within the Oxfordshire Plan 2050 will be taken in an open and transparent way.


As we have previously explained, these are matters for decision by the individual councils and not by the Future Oxfordshire Partnership itself.


The local planning authorities are currently reviewing the evidence base, the programme and the timetable of the Oxfordshire Plan 2050 in light of consultation responses and comments received. 


Formal decisions will be taken openly in meetings of the city and district councils.

2.     That the Future Oxfordshire Partnership be requested to liaise with Oxfordshire’s universities to promote innovation.


3.     That the future Oxfordshire Partnership support the need for gender inclusivity in innovation and STEM.



OxLEP’s Innovation Sub-Group draws together Oxfordshire’s key innovation institutions, universities and stakeholders to enhance our innovation eco-system as part of our Local Industrial Strategy. The FOP therefore recommends that OxLEP (which has membership of this board) leads on this work and develops a strategy: engaging with the FOP, universities and local authorities, where appropriate. The FOP support  gender inclusivity in innovation and STEM and ask OxLEP to embed this in this work.


The FOP would be pleased to receive future updates that give a clear strategy and recommendations for collaboration.


4.     That the Future Oxfordshire Partnership be requested to

a.    support the planning and delivery of real time passenger information system on an Oxfordshire wide basis, taking into account the difference in needs between rural and urban bus users and bus frequency.

b.    Investigate the potential of bus interchanges in encouraging greater use of buses, particularly off peak.

c.    support the acknowledgement within the Bus Service Improvement Plan and Enhanced Partnership of the comparative lack of scheduled bus provision within the districts to the City of Oxford.

d.    support the involvement of school bus providers within the Bus Service Improvement Plan and Enhanced Partnership.

The Future Oxfordshire Partnership supports public transport and the essential role it plays in the reduction of carbon emissions and helping to tackle climate change.  In particular, partners are keen to see enhancements to rural bus services, better connectivity and improvements for customers, where these can be practically achieved.


The specific matters mentioned here will be for consideration by the Enhanced Partnership when it is established.  The proposed Enhanced Partnership priorities and working areas specifically reference Real Time Information, in terms of both upgrading infrastructure (provision of RTI ‘estate’ and systems) the customer facing aspect.


The importance of interchange for buses is also recognised, in the Bus Service Improvement Plan as a well as more widely in the draft Oxfordshire Local Transport & Connectivity Plan.  This includes the development of proposed ‘mobility hubs’ and the opportunity to better integrate bus with other modes as well as interchange between services. 


Whilst a ‘whole network’ understanding and approach is needed, that includes consideration of school trips alongside others, it is important to be aware that dedicated / contracted school service provision is outside the scope of the Enhanced Partnership.