CAMPAIGNERS battling the proposed £100 million redevelopment of Botley’s West Way shopping centre need £15,000 to fight an appeal.

West Way Community Concern said it would be fundraising for legal support to take on developer Doric Properties at a potential inquiry.

Doric has appealed a unanimous decision by Vale of White Horse District Council planning committee to reject its proposals last month.

West Way Community Concern chairman Chris Church said: “We will be raising money in February and March to enable us to have legal representation at the inquiry against Doric.

“We need to be able to punch at our own weight.”

The matter was discussed at a ‘What Botley Wants’ meeting attended by more than 100 people this week.

The session identified several main priorities they would like to see in any future development.

A large community centre, combined with a library to create an arts centre, low-rise design and small independent shops topped the list.

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Mr Church said: “We were delighted to see so many people with so many positive ideas.

“Particularly interesting was the idea of a combined arts centre as a new focal point.

“It really does show how much the people of Botley care about their future.”

The campaigners will put these ideas to the Vale at a scheduled meeting with council leader Matthew Barber today.

Lib Dem county councillor Janet Godden attended the meeting as a resident.

She said: “It was wonderful to see so many people and to hear some of their very sensible and viable ideas.

“It shows that people had not just come together in objection to what was being put forward but they have a good idea of what they would like to see.”

Doric wants to demolish Field House sheltered accommodation, Elms Parade and surrounding shops for a supermarket, gym, hotel, six-screen cinema, library, 525 student rooms and 50 flats.

The appeal, submitted at the end of December, has not yet been validated by the Planning Inspectorate.

The inspectorate said the fire that ravaged much of the Vale’s offices earlier this month in Crowmarsh Gifford had delayed the validation but it hoped to complete it this week.

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