A PLAN to designate a field as a village green has been unanimously kicked out by county councillors following a seven year battle.

A residents' association had wanted land in North Hinksey now owned by Oxford Preservation Trust (OPT) to be given the special designation.

But the county council said there was little support for the application. At a public inquiry held last November in Oxford, just one member of the public turned up.

They were a member of the Harcourt Hill Residents' Association, which had initially filed the plan back in 2012.

At the time, it was to challenge the previous landowner. They had placed a fence around the site, which lies alongside Grosvenor Road and Vernon Avenue.

But it was sold to the OPT in 2016, which has said it is ‘committed to keeping the land open for public use, at least insofar as [it] is not incompatible with nature conservation’.

The county council officially refused the residents' application at its planning committee at County Hall, Oxford.

An example of a successful application for a village green is Sunningwell.

The 10.2 acre site is in the centre of the village, south of Oxford, and opposite its St Leonard's Church.

It is used, according to Sunningwell Parish Council, 'for the benefit and the recreation' of residents, such as community events.

It was designated a village green after the case was taken to the House of Lords in September 1999.

It is now managed by Sunningwell Parish Council after a document was signed in November 2013; the parish council approved its objectives for the site in September 2012.