Almost 100 new homes have been approved in Kidlington in the latest of a succession of major housing applications in villages to the north of Oxford.

The development of 96 homes off Bicester Road was given the green light by Cherwell District Council last week.

It comes despite fears that the Kidlington Gap – the green belt land which separates the village from Oxford – is being “obliterated” by new housing.

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One councillor said the new homes were the “the tip of the iceberg” with thousands more designated on land surrounding Kidlington, Yarnton and Begbroke.

Oxford Mail: The proposed development of 96 homes in KidlingtonThe proposed development of 96 homes in Kidlington (Image: Cherwell District Council)

At a meeting on Thursday (December 7), the council’s planning committee agreed with officer recommendations to approve the 96 homes.

Council leader Barry Wood said: “There is everything for us to be gained on a quality application of this type in this location.”

Mr Wood claimed there was “benefit" to Kidlington due to the provision of 50 per cent affordable housing and financial contributions from developers Hill Residential.

He proposed the motion to approve the development.

This was despite objections from villagers and the Environment Agency with fears over traffic increases caused by the new housing and the impact of three-storey flats on the privacy of neighbours.

Oxford Mail: Barry Wood argued in favour of the new housing development in KidlingtonBarry Wood argued in favour of the new housing development in Kidlington (Image: Cherwell District Council.)

But councillor Andrew Beere said these were “minor problems compared to growing housing risks and poverty” as he seconded Mr Wood’s motion.

All committee members voted for the plans bar one who abstained.

The decision comes just a few months after almost 500 new homes were approved in Kidlington.

Other applications in the pipeline which have not yet been approved include more than 1,000 homes at North Oxford Golf Club, 1,450 homes at Bayswater Brook, 800 homes in Water Eaton, and 540 homes near Yarnton which have gone to a government appeal.

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Housing applications in and around the villages are rife because Cherwell District Council agreed to meet Oxford’s housing needs in 2020 by allocating 4,400 new homes in the area.

And many more houses are earmarked there in the council’s draft 2040 local plan, which finished public consultation last month.

Oxford Mail: Ian Middleton said the Kidlington gap was being obliterated by new housingIan Middleton said the Kidlington gap was being obliterated by new housing (Image: Cherwell District Council)

Layla Moran, Liberal Democrat MP for Oxford West and Abingdon, said Oxford City Council needed to stop pushing its housing into Cherwell.

She said: "We want to see Cherwell District Council stand up to Oxford City Council's approach of refusing to build enough homes in the city and then expecting neighbouring councils to pick up their slack.”

Green councillor for Yarnton Ian Middleton added: “The Kidlington gap is being obliterated to serve the needs of the city because the city council refuses to respond to those needs and the needs of Oxford institutions themselves.”

The city council claims there is limited space for housing in Oxford.