AN Oxfordshire MP has said recommendations not to return obstetric services to the Horton General Hospital are 'extremely disappointing'.

The obstetric unit at the hospital was closed on safety grounds in October 2016 because of long term difficulties in recruiting suitably qualified doctors, with the hospital now offering only a midwifery-led unit, rather than a traditional labour war and obstetrics unit.

This week Oxfordshire's clinical commissioning group (CCG) published recommendations off the back of a lengthy consultation on maternity services in the county, recommending a Midwife-Led Unit (MLU) in place at Horton be made permanent, with obstetrics remaining solely at Oxford's John Radcliffe hospital (JR).

MP for North Oxfordshire Victoria Prentis said: "The recommendation is extremely disappointing. I believe we can do more to recruit obstetricians and reopen a safe service.

"As I have said many times before, the JR is simply too far to travel when in labour or an emergency situation.

"I will work closely with other MPs, councillors and campaign groups to ensure that we take every step we can."

The CCG will vote on the recommendations on September 26.

Mrs Prentis said 'glimmers of hope' from the announcement could include extra funding and more parking at the Horton.

She added: "I was born at the Horton and I hope future generations of Banbury babies will be too. I will never give up on the fight to bring back a full maternity service to Banbury."