THE people of North Hinksey are to be consulted on whether they want more control over how their village is developed.

A decision is expected to be made at Thursday’s meeting of North Hinksey Parish Council as to whether the area should begin drawing up a Neighbourhood Plan.

The decision comes after a public meeting earlier this month when residents discussed whether or not it would be a good idea.

Sycamore Road resident Emily Smith is a volunteer who helped set up the meeting.

She said: “Everyone was keen to have a Neighbourhood Plan so there will be a report back to the parish council on Thursday and the plan is for there to be a motion in support of it.

“The biggest thing that came out of the public meeting was the Doric proposal for the West Way and we are trying to find out how much of an influence a Neighbourhood Plan could have at on it at this stage.

“We are inviting people to come to the parish council meeting.”

Doric Properties has controversial proposals to redevelop the West Way shopping centre, which will involve demolishing the historic Elms Parade and building a cinema and large supermarket.

Under the Localism Act 2011 communities and parish councils can draw up Neighbourhood Plans which carry weight when planning applications for development are decided.

A Neighbourhood Plan would have to go through a public consultation as well as a local referendum before becoming reality.

Such plans are already being drawn up in Wolvercote, Summertown and Jericho while Thame became the first place in Oxfordshire to approve its plan at a referendum earlier this year.

A motion is due to be put forward by parish councillor Ag MacKeith and a majority vote of councillors should decide whether to support or reject the plans.

If it supports the plan the parish council would then have to put in a formal request to Vale of White Horse District Council to agree as well.

Ms MacKeith said: “The general feeling at the meeting was people would like to see a plan.

“It is a way rather than no way of trying to have a say on what we want to see.”

North Hinksey’s planning authority Vale of the White Horse District Council was asked to comment but so far has not.

The parish council will meet on Thursday at 8pm in Seacourt Hall in Chapel Way.