Several of your correspondents have criticised Oxford City Council's proposed backing for the eco-town at Weston-on-the-Green.

I understand that a proposal like this is always going to raise strong feelings on all sides.

But I think Oxford would be mad to ignore the huge opportunities this could offer our people.

The eco-town would provide much-needed housing, with a rail link running regularly to the city centre, within minutes.

This has the potential to relieve congestion on the A34, and increase access to the city's jobs, as well as getting families out of overcrowded accommodation, and helping local people get on the housing ladder.

Secondly, it would allow trains to run directly between Oxford, Bicester and London, cutting journey times and massively enhancing reliability, as the bottleneck at Reading would be bypassed.

This could transform the lives of those relying on the Oxford to London train service.

Obviously, the detail has to be got right, but we would be letting the city down not to respond positively to this once-in-a-generation opportunity.

ED TURNER (Councillor) Deputy Leader (Labour) Oxford City Council