FEW love a kebab as much as Oxford, according to a new study that's found the city has more takeaways per head than almost any other, writes Ben Blackledge.

The poll, carried out by Fresh Student Living, found people in the city rack up an average of £1,270 a year on take out.

It places Oxford fourth nationwide with 25 fast food restaurants per 100,000 people, only behind Cardiff, Newcastle and Birmingham.

READ AGAIN: How clean is your takeaway?

Yet Oxford came out on top in terms of health with locals spending an average of £921 a year on memberships.

Local restaurant entrepreneur, Khalil Rehman, who co-founded the expanding pizza chain Caprinos, thinks Oxford’s young population plays a role.

Oxford Mail:

He said: “Students are more likely to eat out than eat in the house. When students go on holiday, it really affects our sales.”

Despite the large number of fast food restaurants, Rehman found there was always strong demand for more.

He said: “A competitor opened up across from us and we expected some sort of decline in sales but it didn’t affect us at all. There is lots of demand.”

IN PICTURES: The changing face of Oxford takeaways

One challenge new fast food businesses face is that all new restaurants are always put in the same planning category regardless of whether they are selling greasy kebabs or kale salads, according to Hannah Fenton, manager of Good Food Oxford.

She thinks this restricts the number of healthy alternatives able to open up.

She said: “The city council controls how many [restaurants] are allowed in a certain area, like close to a school, and have the power to limit new ones.

“It could be made easier so healthy choice becomes the easy choice.”

Earlier this month, St Michael's Street eatery Mission Burrito’s Chicken Tinga Burrito was revealed by Deliveroo as the top ordered item in Oxford.

Oxford Mail:

Operations manager, Anna Merry, thinks many fast food businesses owe some of their success to expansion of the food delivery company.

She said: “Deliveroo has grown rapidly over the last few years and they’ve begun mapping out to industrial estates and science parks [around Oxford].

“We have a massive range in our customers but a large proportion are students.

"We see spikes every year when they return to Oxford from holidays.

"There’s also a lot of tourism in the summer but, despite all that, we still keep our regulars.”