CHERWELL is an “open goal” for “opportunist” housing developers after council bosses lost another housing appeal, Banbury MP Sir Tony Baldry said.

The Conservative spoke after Cherwell District Council lost a fifth planning appeal to build homes in the district’s villages.

The Planning Inspectorate has overturned its decision to refuse plans for 65 homes in Adderbury, south of Milton Road.

It brings the total homes approved on appeal to more than 500 since October.

The inspectorate’s Tim Wood approved the controversial plan as he said the council cannot show enough homes are being built.

It has to ensure enough homes are on the way to meet demand for the next five years, but Mr Wood said this was 4.7 years for Cherwell.

The council has also not finalised its “local plan” of where it will allow major estsates to be built.

Sir Tony said: “I think this is very disappointing.

“However, planning inspectors have repeatedly made it clear that if Cherwell is going to resist opportunistic planning applications it is going to need to have both an agreed local plan and a predicted five-year housing supply.

“It’s quite clear until they do, I’m afraid this is something of an open goal for developers.”

The council is bidding to buy land from the Ministry of Defence at Graven Hill, Bicester for 1,900 homes.

Sir Tony said once the local plan was adopted it would give much more protection to the council.