Motives questioned over campaign for Waddesdon bypass

The Waddesdon Relief Road website set up by Arnold White Estates
The Waddesdon Relief Road website set up by Arnold White Estates

Villagers have questioned a developer’s motives after it set up a website in support of a relief road around Waddesdon.

Arnold White Estates, which currently owns Littleton Manor Farm in Bicester Road, Waddesdon, has commissioned the Waddesdon Relief Road campaign website, which it says is supporting the community in the wake of HS2.

The firm, like many villagers says that a relief road would protect Waddesdon from extra construction traffic if the high speed rail line is built. But many feel that it is only getting involved because it wants to build on the land.

In 2013 Arnold White Estates commissioned a report submitted to Aylesbury Vale District Council, which claimed that the village would be ripe for development, and it has already built two homes on the Littleton Manor Farm land.

Waddesdon district councillor David Vick, said: “Arnold White Estates are promoting a relief road on the back of wanting to develop a huge stretch of housing in the area which is not supported by the parish council, the district council or the county council.

“That being said, Waddesdon does need a relief road, but we are endeavouring to achieve one without Arnold White Estates.

“I think everyone who lives in Waddesdon would have to like to have been consulted before Arnold White Estates started this campaign, so that it could actually represent the views of the community.”

A spokesman for Arnold White Estates, said: “Buckinghamshire County Council has called for a Relief Road as part of its mitigation blueprint for HS2 and our campaign is a response to this.

“The website and leaflet are just the start of the campaign to see if people agree with us and the Council that a relief road should be delivered. More than 300 local people - and counting - have already contacted us to pledge support for the campaign. We are now working to broaden this support and make the most effective possible case to HS2 Ltd in this short window of opportunity.

“Arnold White is a local business that owns land on the route proposed for the road. Like all local businesses, it stands to benefit from seeing a vital and long awaiting piece of local infrastructure delivered. The campaign is unrelated to any plans for housing.”