This month

Your regular update from South Oxfordshire District Council straight to your inbox.  You can also view this edition online.

Free parking days return for the run up to Christmas

Shoppers in South Oxfordshire and the Vale of White Horse are being given a helping hand to buy local this Christmas.

Anybody who can’t get to local businesses by walking, cycling or public transport can take advantage of free parking in district council car parks.

We provide the annual free parking days to encourage people to shop locally for Christmas presents and to catch up with friends and family in our great pubs, cafés and restaurants during the festive period.  This year it’s even more important to help to support local businesses following the impact of the Coronavirus pandemic.  

Free parking days allocated to each area are agreed with the individual town councils depending on which day would best suit local traders.  

Drivers will be able to park for free in South and Vale car parks on the following days: 
  • Abingdon – Saturdays 4, 11 and 18 December
  • Didcot – Mondays – 6, 13 and 20 December
  • Faringdon – Saturdays 27 November, and 4 and 11 December
  • Goring – Saturdays 4, 11 and 18 December
  • Henley – Fridays 10, 17 and 24 December
  • Thame – Saturdays 4, 11 and 18 December
  • Wallingford – Thursdays 9, 16 and 23 December
  • Wantage – Saturdays 4, 11 and 18 December
On the above days there’s no need to display a ticket, however maximum stay times will still apply in specific car parks – more details on this at

Drink and needle spiking

You may have seen reports in the media recently following an increase in instances of alleged drink and needle spiking.   

Being spiked with alcohol or drugs can make you seriously vulnerable. If you have any concerns, please take a look at the Talk to Frank website which has some great tips on staying safe and what to do if you think you or a friend has been spiked. 

We believe that everyone deserves to feel safe while out enjoying time with friends – please share this link with your family and friends.

Government grant for farmers on Areas of Outstanding Natural

Defra has launched a grant scheme for those who farm in protected landscapes.

Please help to spread the word to farmers and land managers in your parishes who support any activities on Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty as they may be eligible to apply. The programme will run until March 2024. 

For more information, please see the grant information sheet or the North Wessex Downs website.

Grants funding available for voluntary and community organisations

Do you know any local voluntary and community groups looking for funding this Autumn?

South Oxfordshire District Council has capital and revenue grants currently available for constituted not-for-profit organisations.

Please visit for further information on deadlines and details on whether your project or group is eligible. Any questions, contact the Community Enablement team on

Join the fun at Cornerstone Arts Centre

Cornerstone Arts Centre in Didcot has an exciting line up of events and activities for all ages.

Sing the blues with a Polar Bear, jam with the Puffins and beat-box with an Arctic Fox. It all happens at the North Pole Jazz Lounge; the coooolest place on earth in this year’s Christmas show The Ballad of Rudy, running from 18 to 24 December.

Find out more about what’s on via or pop in to Cornerstone yourself and take the time to enjoy a drink and bite to eat in the Nourish café bar.

South Oxfordshire District Council
135 Eastern Avenue
Milton Park
OX14 4SB