Oxford

Cherwell District Council's housing Local Plan backed

House building Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Councillors will vote on whether to adopt the plan in July

Proposals to build almost 23,000 homes in north Oxfordshire over the next 16 years have received government backing.

A planning inspector supported Cherwell District Council's decisions on where to allocate housing in its Local Plan.

Michael Gibbard, Cherwell's lead member for planning, said it now had a "legally sound document" which clearly defined "approved sites for development".

Councillors will vote on whether to adopt the plan on 20 July.

The council proposes building 7,319 homes for Banbury, 10,129 homes in Bicester, and 5,392 homes elsewhere including about 2,361 at the former RAF Upper Heyford base.

The plan also outlines 61 hectares of employment land in Banbury and 138.5 hectares in Bicester.

'Ten-year process'

Inspector Nigel Payne reduced the amount of employment land allocated in Banbury, bordering south Northamptonshire, by 36 hectares for being too large.

Mr Gibbard said: "Mr Payne supported all of the sites allocated for housing and employment with some modifications and did not propose any additional sites for development.

"His report is the penultimate stage of a 10-year process to get a new local plan adopted and having received the report, the final stage is for councillors to accept the inspector's recommendations.

"Cherwell will no longer be held to ransom by opportunistic developers and will once again be in charge of its own destiny."

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