VILLAGERS have slammed proposals to build more than 3,000 homes in Bicester's eco-town saying it will 'swallow-up' their village.

Forming part of the wider 6,000 home eco-town off the B4100 Banbury Road, which has already been given the greenlight in the Local Plan, the plans have been put forward by Hallam Land Management comprising a 177 hectare site.

ALSO READ:Plans proposed for 3,000 homes in Bicester's eco-town

It would be called Hawkwell Village and include up to 3,100 homes and a mixed-use local centre with takeaways, a pub and wine bar.

But people who live in Bucknell, a village to the northwest of the proposed site, say they didn't know about the project and were not consulted before the planning application was submitted to Cherwell District Council on December 23, 2021.

Bicester Advertiser: NW Bicester MasterplanNW Bicester Masterplan

Heather Lawson, who has lived in Bucknell for seven years, said: "I had to put leaflets through people's letterboxes asking, 'are you aware of this?'. Around 50 people had no idea this was going on. The developer has been trying to keep this under the radar.

"At the moment, it’s a proposal, but if we don’t make a big enough protest it will be too late - it will go through planning."

Heather is concerned that because of the huge scale of the estate with its boundary close to Bucknell's, it will make Bucknell look like an extension of Bicester, losing its distinctive village character.

ALSO READ: Plans to demolish Bicester's old library and build houses are put on hold

Bicester Advertiser: Hawkwell Village site location is marked in red. Pic via Cherwell Distrct Council planning portalHawkwell Village site location is marked in red. Pic via Cherwell Distrct Council planning portal

She added: "There’s this feeling of ‘lets build as much as we can' and they’re not looking 20 or 30 years into the future. In the meantime our village is already becoming a rat run.

"I’m sure something will go through, but at least reduce the number of homes. We can’t let them walk all over us.

"A village like ours is just going to be swallowed-up. This isn’t going to be a village, it's going to be an extension of Bicester."

The massive site would also be home to informal open space, allotments, burial ground and play areas.

Bicester Advertiser: Illustrative CGI of the site showing open spaceIllustrative CGI of the site showing open space

Tying in with the eco ethos of the area, a solar farm is proposed, sustainable drainage systems, and new highway, cycle and pedestrian routes.

Heather, as well as other people in Bucknell who object to the plans, say they are also worried about the influx of vehicles the new site would bring and the impact building could have on the village's flooding problems.

ALSO READ: Nine new plots up for grabs as building at Graven Hill continues

A Hallam Land Management spokesperson said: "We have created a consultation website to give people easy access to the materials, with information summarised in consultation boards, and which was used for a virtual exhibition ahead of the submission of the application.

"This also hosts a web-link to all of the planning documentation on the Council’s website, where people can submit comments, which will be analysed and considered by Hallam and separately by Cherwell District Council, as the Local Planning Authority.’’

Keep up to date with all the latest news on our website, or follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

For news updates straight to your inbox, sign up to our newsletter here.

Have you got a story for us? Contact our newsdesk on or 01865 425 445.