Oxford City Council has confirmed its plan to expand its Smoke Control Area initiative.

Smoke Control Areas are zones in which air quality is improved by promoting more efficient and cleaner use of wood-burning stoves and open fires.

Last month residents and businesses were asked to share their thoughts about the proposal for a city-wide Smoke Control Area, which would replace the existing system - a patchwork of individual Smoke Control Areas that accounts for just under half of Oxford at present.

If the new plans are accepted, several parts of Oxford which are not presently included in a Smoke Control Area could be added to the city-wide constituent.

These areas include north Oxford - from Summertown to Wolvercote - Rose Hill, Littlemore, New Headington, Old Marston, and certain sections of the Temple Cowley.

The public consultation lasted eight weeks, taking place between December 4 and January 31, and collected a total of 443 responses.

The data suggests a slightly divided response amongst those surveyed - 52 per cent voiced their agreement with the proposed expansion, however, 42 per cent disagreed with the scheme.

The remaining 5.64 per cent of responses were categorised as 'Not sure/Prefer not to say/Not answered'.

All responses will be detailed in a summary report, due to be published by the Council on its consultation page in due course.

Within the proposed city-wide Smoke Control Area, residents and businesses will still be able to purchase and use solid fuel and wood-burning stoves/open-fires, as long as they adhere to the guidelines.

These are to use an approved wood-burning stove or equivalent appliance, or use an authorised fuel with an non-approved stove/appliance, or open fire.

The Council's cabinet is expected to apply to the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs to formally ask for approval to establish the expanded Smoke Control Area.

If the plan is ratified, the new Smoke Control Area could be instated by autumn.

Councillor Anna Railton, cabinet member for zero carbon Oxford and climate justice said: "I want to thank everyone who took part in the consultation and shared their views on the expansion of Oxford’s Smoke Control Area.

"Smoke Control Areas aim to encourage everyone who uses solid fuel with wood-burning stoves and open fires to do it as efficiently and cleanly as possible.

"Particulate pollution and its health impacts are a growing concern, so I am pleased that we are able to take this next step to reduce both the indoor and outdoor particulate pollution across the city."