SIX more Syrian families will be allowed to seek refuge in parts of North Oxfordshire.

Cherwell District Council has agreed to rehome a further 50 refugees from the war-torn country, from six families, within its boundaries.

This is on top of a previous commitment to resettle six families in the district, the last of which is expected to arrive in the next couple of months.

A report presented to the council’s executive board stated: "Cherwell District Council is well placed to resettle refugees within the district.

"There are strong partnerships with other statutory and voluntary partners which have helped the delivery of the project to date.

"There is considerable community support, especially from faith groups.

"All of the children from the refugee families have been able to access education.

"The refugee families are extremely satisfied with the help and support they have received and continue to receive."

The council’s pledge to resettle the initial six families was made in 2016, as part of a Government project to welcome up to 20,000 Syrian refugees between 2015 and 2020.

A request from the Churches in Bicester Group to resettle about 50 refugees - equating to about 12 families.

The report also noted Cherwell District Council has secured accommodation for refugees’ families within the private rented sector. Adding that it was a conscious decision to ensure that the limited resource of social housing available within the district was not taken away from local residents in housing need.

Leader of the labour party on Cherwell District Council Sean Woodcock said: "Local Labour Party members in Banbury and Bicester have been involved with community groups on a very practical level in helping the original families move in and become engaged citizens in our communities, and we are thrilled and fully support this decision by Cherwell."

Councillors at the meeting agreed they had a duty to continue offering help.

The report, compiled by a council officer, added: “The refugee families are extremely satisfied with the help and support they receive.

“The resettlement of refugees has been very successful to date.

“The project is supported with funding for Cherwell to claim and is expected to be delivered at nil cost to the council.”

Areas that the council will now consider and look to improve for these families include a lack of support services in Kidlington and the difficulty for families accessing dentists in Bicester.