Council opens public consultation on Oxford Central Conservation Area Appraisal

Published: Friday, 31st August 2018

An eight-week public consultation opens on Monday 3 September 2018 on the City Council’s Oxford Central (City and University) Conservation Area Appraisal, which covers the historic core of the city.

National legislation defines a conservation area as an area of special architectural or historic interest, the character or appearance of which it is desirable to preserve or enhance. A conservation area appraisal is an objective analysis of the elements which together define the area’s special architectural or historic interest.

These elements will be largely physical, both man-made and natural, such as historic buildings, trees and rivers, but will also include other considerations, such as spaces, views, uses, and sounds. The appraisal seeks to describe and map these elements to inform everyone involved in the planning process.

The council would like to hear from the public about what makes Oxford’s central area special and is consulting on the work done so far for eight weeks from 3 September until 26 October 2018. 

People can comment on the appraisal by responding to the online consultation on the council’s website. Alternatively, submissions can also be made by email to or by meeting the project team at the Town Hall during Oxford Open Doors on Saturday 8 September and Saturday 20 October from 10am to 2pm. 

Councillor Alex Hollingsworth, Board Member for Planning and Transport, said: “The centre of Oxford is one of the most important conservation areas in the country with its concentration of buildings and history in a small space. It is also a large part of the living and breathing city where people live, work and visit. It has evolved over hundreds of years and it will continue to adapt in the future. This assessment will help to record what is special about the area and allow the City Council to make informed proposals for the future management of the area to ensure that its character and appearance are not harmed. Decisions about alterations, development and demolition will be informed by this appraisal.”