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Plans for South Oxfordshire dog park prompt concerns

Plans to create a dog park in Oxfordshire are to be discussed South Oxfordshire District Council’s planning committee after concerns were raised over its impact on an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB).

According to the council’s documents, the planning application concerns a 4.5 hectare (11 acre) site in woodland at Kidmore End, Oxfordshire, near Cane End in Reading.

The development, for which retrospective permission is sought, utilises three areas of woodland for dog walking – called Oak Park – comprising four acres, Chapel Woods – comprising eight acres and Wallaby Woods – comprising four acres.

There is also an area used for dog exercise/agility known as Adventure Park.

Meanwhile, there is an existing L-shaped, single-storey building to the southwest of the site used for dog daycare
and dog daycare clinic (known as Oscars Day Care Centre) as well as dog groomers (known as Canine Cuts).

According to the application, up to ten dogs per hour, per area, would be allowed to be booked in, from 06:00 – 21:00 in the spring and summertime and 08:00 – 16:00 hours in the autumn and wintertime, seven days a week.

The applicant also operates a ‘one out, one in’ policy with each fenced-off dog walking area having its own car parking area accessed via a gate.

Furthermore, the dog agility area is reserved only for dogs attending Oscars Day Care Centre, with a maximum of 20 at any one time.

However, responding to the application, Kidmore End Parish Council said it objected to the change of use saying it would have a “detrimental impact” on the AONB, while adding that the additional traffic from A4074 would “increase likelihood of accidents”.

What’s more, the Landscape Officer noted that the development is “at odds with the key characteristics of the local AONB landscape and would impact on the character and visual amenity of the A4074 and the footpath which passes adjacent to the site”.

South Oxfordshire District Council has also received 11 objections from neighbours who commented that fence heights are “inadequate” and “dogs may escape”, amongst other concerns.


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