CAMPAIGNERS opposed to a plan that could see 4,400 new homes being built on the Green Belt north of Oxford hit out at 'scare tactics' they said had been used by senior councillors.

Cherwell District Council decided on Monday to send a partial review of its Local Plan to the national planning inspector, who will ultimately decide on whether the plan will be allowed.

Cherwell said it needed to meet an unmet housing need in Oxford – but over 1,500 opponents have several worries, including fears the boundaries between Kidlington, Begbroke and Yarnton could become blurred.

Giles Lewis, the chairman of the Begbroke and Yarnton Green Belt Campaign, said: “This was a disappointing, if sadly not a wholly unexpected outcome for local democracy.

"This issue was acknowledged by Cherwell to be hugely controversial and had received an unprecedented number of responses against it during public consultation.

He added: “It is evident that the scare tactics warning of an imminent tidal wave of wildcat development if the plan was rejected had worked.

"Yet BYG’s specialist legal opinion that was presented at the meeting refutes this."

Mr Lewis said: "Such scare tactics have no place in democracy.”