A GOVERNMENT inspector has been appointed to help oversee development at a garden village.

Darren McCreery has been appointed to oversee key areas of planning at the Salt Cross garden village, near Eynsham.

Mr McCreery has been appointed by Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick to chair hearings on the Area Action Plan (AAP).

The hearings will officially begin on June 28 and run for two weeks, after which Mr McCreery will decide whether to give the plan the green light.

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Chris Hargraves, planning policy manager at West Oxfordshire District Council (WODC), said: “This is an extremely important part of the process of developing Salt Cross.

“It has taken three years to get to this point but we are delighted to welcome Mr McCreery and look forward to the hearings and receiving his feedback.”

Mr McCreery will consider a range of issues including whether current and future housing needs are being met, transport infrastructure, potential net zero carbon development and policies surrounding the Salt Cross science and technology park.

Once adopted, the AAP will become statutory.

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It will be used alongside the Local Plan and Eynsham Neighbourhood Plan to determine future proposals at Salt Cross.

Work on the AAP began in 2018 with partners including community representatives, property business Grosvenor Britain & Ireland, WODC and Oxfordshire County Council involved in meetings, events, consultations and activities to listen to ideas from a wide range of interests.

Salt Cross will include 2,200 homes, new primary and secondary schools, sports facilities, parks, and an employment park, which is designed to attract advanced manufacturing businesses.