Introducing the Oxfordshire Plan 2050

Aspiration 2 - Strong and healthy communities

40 Oxfordshire is a very diverse county with areas of deprivation in amongst areas where residents have a higher quality of life. There are many aspects that effect inequalities including skills, employment, security of housing and health. These factors link and combine to result in people facing different life opportunities. Disparities are also emerging between the generations (in particular linked to housing) and to some extent between urban and rural communities (in particular linked to digital and public transport connectivity).

41 Long term planning presents an exceptional opportunity to shape healthy and thriving places where the right policies, environment and partnership working are adopted to empower individuals, communities and organisations to make healthier choices and reduce the burden of long term illness or disability and create inclusive communities. Our ambition is to plan for and shape communities to actively promote health and wellbeing and make it easier for people to enjoy healthy and sustainable lives.

42 There is a clear benefit to ensure that all residents of Oxfordshire have a good quality of life and that they are able to access jobs, secure housing, health and social care. This will enable everyone to fully play a part and make their contribution in making the county a sustainable community with the services it needs. The Plan could provide an opportunity to ensure a long-term and co-ordinated approach to healthy place-making across Oxfordshire building on the good practice of the Healthy New Towns projects in Barton and Bicester.

43 The implications of this aspiration for the Oxfordshire Plan are less direct than several of the others but it would affect the way in which a range of policies are framed. For example, it could mean that greater emphasis is placed on providing a range of different housing options to suit different parts of the community. It could mean that economic policies are framed to try and ensure that the benefits of economic growth are shared widely throughout the community rather than focused on particular sectors. It could mean including policies that seek to address inequality of access to local services or public transport. More broadly it could mean making sure that choices taken in the plan are based on considerations of health and wellbeing for example.

44 The international, national and local policies and targets around mitigating and adapting to climate change requires a response in how we design new homes and businesses, structure our economy, build our communities and move goods and people.

Draft Objective 3

To improve health and wellbeing by enabling independence, encouraging healthy lifestyles, facilitating social interaction and creating inclusive and safe communities

Draft Objective 4

to create sustainable communities by providing good access to employment, housing, open space, transport, education, services and facilities to meet identified needs and that respond to the challenges of climate change.