Community Action Marston – Minutes

You will find attached the minutes from the recent Community-led planning workshop held in Old Marston at Mortimer Hall on Tuesday 20th November.

Working groups have formed around:

1) ‘Community building/information sharing’

2) ‘Environment’ esp. car sharing/flooding

3) ‘Transport, parking and traffic’ –we hope to partner with the recently formed Old Marston parish committee.

Please let Clayton Lavellin (details below) know if you would like to get involved in any of these working groups so we can build some active and vibrant groups around these issues. There were also some fantastic ideas about holding a community day event in February/March, producing a community wide newsletter etc and so please do get in touch if any of these projects interest you.

We also decided on a committee structure with a revolving chair nominated from each area, each meeting so please let us know if you would be interested to chair the group for Old Marston, Central Marston or New Marston to get the ball rolling.

Also any other ideas, suggestions, criticisms or opportunities gratefully received as now more than ever we would love the community to really populate and breath life into this action plan, making it their own!

Clayton Lavallin | Community Development Officer | Communities & Neighbourhoods| Oxford City Council | Town Hall | St. Aldate’s | Oxford | OX1 1BX | 07767318274 | 01865 252162 | clavallin

Marston CLP Workshop 4 20.11.12.doc


Ideas for a community information day

One of the ideas explored at tonights meeting around Community Building was the idea of having a Community Information Day in February or March next year – bringing together lots of people from across Marston to explore how we can create and share more information about what goes on in the local area.

I’ve started a document here with some ideas in for what that could look like: perhaps involving lots of different drop-in activities during the day such as:

  • An information scavenger hunt – based on the Knight Foundation Information Toolkit – to find out information online and on paper about what happens in Marston;
  • A social media surgery – where anyone wanting to learn about how to use tools like blogs, twitter, video or photo-sharing to talk about issues that matter to them can get one-to-one support and training;
  • Community mapping exercise – building an interactive map of important issues in the area – including flooding trouble; parking problems; and more positive things like great green spaces in the ward;
  • Photography workshop – building up a visual picture of the area;
  • Wiki-Marston – learning how to create or edit historical information about Marston on Wikipedia, or how to contribute historical information to the Marston Parish website;
  • Data jam – inviting people to explore data about the local area, and to learn how to make use of open data in campaigning for change;
  • Celebration event – something to round off the day. Perhaps some prizes for the best photos, articles or ideas generating during the day.

What do you think? Would you be interested in getting involved in making it happen? Drop in a comment in the document, or below to share your thoughts. If there is enough interest then we’ll start planning something for real….

Setting priorities: traffic; environment; community building

The Community Led Planning group has just met this evening – the rain keeping many away – but we were still able to identify some of the priorities that have come out between different groups and to identify some next steps.

Full notes will be out soon, but here’s a quick summary:

The group have three priority areas:

  • Traffic and parking
    There is a small group forming linked to the Parish Council in Old Marston to look at this issue, and it is hoped they will be able to work with other groups from the whole Marston area to come up with solutions to parking and traffic problems.

    One possible approach would be to find out why people choose to park in Marston streets, and to point drivers from outside the area parking here to alternatives such as car-shares and public transport routes. Ideas welcome.

  • Environment
    The main focus of this theme at the moment is on the idea of car-sharing (linking to the traffic priority). If you are interested in the idea of a car club, or Common Wheels cars being available in the area, leave a comment below or get in touch with Rachel Smith.
  • Community Building
    There are three parts to this priority area – community information, community spaces and community events. In todays meeting we focussed on community information, and the idea of holding a workshop in the New Year to improve the flow of information around Marston.

    This might include having workshops to map out existing information on the area; hands-on training to help people share information online; sessions on making sure information is accessible offline as well as on the Internet; and working on the creation of a regular e-mail newsletter for the whole of Marston.

    Look out for another blog post on this soon.

Community Led Planning meetings are open to anyone from the community to take part in. You can come along to share your views, or to join in one of the action groups to give as much or as little time as you have available to help improve Marston for everyone. Contact to be included on the mailing list for information about future meetings.

Tonight: Community-Led Planning Workshop

Things have been a bit quiet on this blog for a while – but we’re hoping to explore how to get it started properly in the New Year. As part of that we’ll be taking part in the Community-Led Planning Workshop tonight at Mortimer Hall, Old Marston.

Here’s the overview and agenda

Tuesday 20th November: 6.30pm-8.00pm – Mortimer Hall, Old Marston Road,
Oxford, OX3 OPH

6.30pm: Introductions/Update from Marston Old, New and Central Workshops

6.30-7pm: Draft Action Plan

7.00pm-8.00pm: Formation of Steering Group and Working Groups.

For more information, contact Communities and Neighbourhoods on 01865 252791 or at

Next Community Action Marston meeting – 20th September

The third Community-led Planning workshop invites you, the residents of Marston, to come together and agree the priority issues and actions for the area. The meeting will take place at Marston United Reformed Church, Marston Rd on Thursday 20th September at 7pm.

  • Find out how you can get involved in community action in Marston
  • Agree the priority issues and contribute towards an action plan for the area
  • Meet other like minded people and organisations who want to work towards making Marston an even better place to live

For more information, contact Communities and  Neighbourhoods on 01865 252791 or at

Getting to know Marston

I’ve been living in Marston for a year and I’ve recently been getting involved in the Community Led Plan – which has been great because it’s a link with the city council, and I get to hear about local issues and local resources.

After the second community led plan meeting, held at the Scout Hall in New Marston, I heard about the nature reserve on the Marston Road – near the Oxford Brookes Health and Social Care building. It’s great to know it’s there (it can’t be seen easily from the road because of the high hedge) – and there’s a great playground too! Information about news and events can be found on the New Marston Wildlife Group website.

Here’s a photo I took of the beautiful pond.Image 

Issues and assets in Marston

As part of the Social Media Cafe meeting to develop the Marston Blog we’ve been mapping out some of the local issues people have raised, and some of the assets in the community that we could build upon in developing the Community Led Plan.

If you would have something to add to the map, drop a note and he’ll share the map with you so you can edit it directly, or will add markers to it for you.