A RALLYING cry has been made to Botley residents to make sure a planning policy guards against overdevelopment of West Way shopping centre.

The window for comments on a document that will shape the future of the area closes this week and a campaign group said people need to make their opinions heard.

The Supplementary Planning Document (SPD) indicates the Elms Parade shops, St Peter and St Paul Church and Field House sheltered housing, could be redeveloped.

It also permits a wide range of uses such as a cinema, student rooms, a hotel, community hub, food shops and affordable housing.

West Way Community Concern said the SPD did not set enough limits and called for a stronger set of guidelines.

Co-chairman Chris Church said: “There is a real concern about the lack of limits.

“What we want is a much clearer set of guidelines from this document – if they think Elms Parade should stay then it should say so.

“The church and Field House should not be included.”

The SPD says that buildings of up to eight storeys could feature in a development at the east end of the site near Westminster Way.

It also fails to rule out the demolition of Elms Parade for a new five storey development – though Mace has since promised the 1930s shops would be kept.

In December last year the Vale council’s planning committee rejected a £100m scheme to demolish Elms Parade and Field House sheltered housing in favour of a supermarket, hotel, gym, six-screen cinema, 50 flats and 525 student rooms.

Earlier this year more than 1,400 people responded to a survey of what they wanted from the West Way redevelopment.

Grant Nightingale, a Botley resident for 30 years said its results should be used instead of the current consultation. He said: “I feel it is not a real consultation – it should have started two years ago.

“A good place to start would be the survey of 1,400 people who have already been consulted. I hope we will be listened to.”

The council and developer Mace promised a more thorough consultation process this time around of which the SPD is a key part.

The deadline for comments on the SPD consultation is 4.30pm on Friday.

Vale of White Horse District Council will then take people’s comments on board in producing the final document.

That document will be adhered to by Mace or any other future developer.

With just two days to go Mr Church called on the local community to respond to the consultation.

He said: “This will give Mace and any other future developer a clear steer and we want to make that steer as strong as possible.

“To do this we need as many people as possible to have their say.”

Mace director Huw Griffiths said the company would also be submitting its comments on the the SPD in line with the consultation.

The Vale urged residents to comment to have an influence on the future of their area.

Last week more than 200 people turned up to a public meeting to hear the campaign group present its response to the SPD and explain how residents could comment.

Developer Mace is expected to present plans to the public next month before submitting a formal application by the end of the year.

To view and comment on the Supplemtary Planning Document, go to whitehorsedc.gov.uk/botleyspd.