Venue: Meeting Room 1, Abbey House, Abbey Close, Abingdon, OX14 3JE
Contact: Darius Zarazel Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Election of a chair
To elect a chair for this hearing.
A motion moved and seconded, to elect Councillor Ron Batstoneas chair of the panel was carried on being put to the vote.
RESOLVED: that Councillor Ron Batstone be elected as chair of the panel.
Welcome and introductions, and chair's announcements
To welcome all parties to the hearing and receive any announcements and general housekeeping matters from the chair.
The chair welcomed everyone to the meeting, outlined the procedure to be followed and advised on emergency evacuation arrangements.
Apologies for absence
To record apologies for absence and the attendance of substitute members.
There were no apologies for absence
Declarations of interest
To receive any declarations of disclosable pecuniary interests and any conflicts of interest in respect of items on the agenda for this meeting.
There were no declarations of interest.
To note the procedure for this meeting.
The chair confirmed that all parties present understood the procedure.
To consider the head of corporate services’ report.
The chair outlined the application and then invited the GIS team leader and street naming and numbering officer to present their report.
The street Naming and Numbering Officer and the IT Programs Manager informed the panel that the options presented to them were to either change part of Ford Lane street name to Fordy Lane or to change the current Fordy Lane street name plate back to Ford Lane and add ‘Access ONLY to Mulberry Cottage, Fordybrook, Brook House and Furlong House’.
The officers then presented the history regarding the naming of the street, such as its original closure of the road for vehicular traffic except for access to frontage properties. They noted that the name “Fordy Lane” derives from a planning proposal from 1995 when Oxfordshire County Council (“OCC”) wrote in response to the local parish council indicating their objection to the Ford Lane access and support for the Church Lane access. As part of that response OCC had confirmed that if the Vale of White Horse District Council (“VWHDC”) were to install a “Fordy Lane” street plate it would not come into conflict with the existing Prohibition of Vehicles Order, hence the beginning of the reference to “Fordy Lane”. In 1996, OCC made a further order ( the (Ford Lane, East Hendred) (Prohibition of Driving) Order 1996 which closed Ford Lane to through traffic (other than pedal cycles) at a point 150 metres south of the junction with Cat Street and which was enforced by the installation of locked bollards.
At some unknown point after 1996, a street name plate appeared at the northern extent of Ford Lane bearing the name “Fordy Lane”. The officer emphasised to the panel that a street name sign that bears a different name to the road name should have only taken place where a street naming and numbering authority carried out the change following the required consultation under Section 13 of the Oxfordshire Act 1985, which had not happened on this occasion.
On 27th March 2023, OCC approached VWHDC querying the extents of Ford Lane and Fordy Lane and in subsequent email exchanges with OCC appeared to be advocating for the change of street name from Ford Lane to Fordy Lane for the section of street north of the road closure.
Under Section 13 of the Oxfordshire Act 1985 the council may alter a street name for whole or part of a street but must first conduct a consultation via public notices and serve those to owners or occupiers of the properties affected by the change. Officers outlined how important it is for properties and streets to be easily identified as the Emergency Services, statutory undertakers (gas, electricity, water, and telephone companies) all locate the property by the information provided by the district council and that currently there is an anomaly between information held by those bodies and information provided on Google which identifies a street by what appears in situ (the Fordy Lane sign). The officers ... view the full minutes text for item 12.