IN your article entitled “Should Oxford’s Green Belt be used to provide badly needed new homes?” (Oxford Mail, April 9) one of your contributors made a couple of inaccurate statements which I would like to address.

Firstly, they claimed the Vale was putting forward nearly 20 development sites within the green belt. This is inaccurate. In a document called Our Housing Delivery Update, we made proposals for people to comment on.

It included just seven proposed sites within the Green Belt, not 20. These proposals are supported by a Green Belt review, confirming their suitability, and I should make it very clear that all other reasonable alternatives were considered before proposing these seven sites.

They also claimed the housing need figures we have used are “unsound, based on very dubious predictions of economic growth”. The figures came from the Strategic Housing Market Assessment (SHMA), which is a report jointly commissioned and managed by the six main councils in Oxfordshire.

It was produced by independent planning experts and by necessity is designed to be sound enough to be approved by the planning inspectorate. As the full SHMA report was only published today, I can only conclude that your contributor’s comments are based on speculation and assumption, and not on the quality of the evidence on which the SHMA is based.

This is a very important time for the Vale, and the county as a whole, and it doesn’t help the debate if inaccuracies cloud the agenda.

Cllr MATTHEW BARBER, Leader of Vale of White Horse District Council Abbey Close Abingdon