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English village besieged by tourists

Press AssociationPress Association 7/07/2016

Camera-wielding tourists have been flocking to a rural English village for selfies - to the bemusement of locals.

Residents in Kidlington are flummoxed as to why the village, about 8km north of Oxford, has suddenly become such a tourist hotspot.

Images posted to social media show groups of tourists posing in roads and by garden hedges while others, armed with umbrellas, braved the rain to get their coveted snaps.

Samantha Anderson, posting on a local Facebook group, said: "Saw them the other week, they were even in the gardens and at people's front doors."

Another user said the Oxfordshire village, particularly Benmead Road and the Moors, had been receiving the unexpected visitors for around three weeks.

Rumours of Harry Potter and Inspector Morse being filmed on location and links to Sir Richard Branson have been floated as possible reasons for Kidlington's sudden surge in popularity.

Some have suggested the destination is a convenient stop-off for those heading to Bicester Village, a nearby designer shopping outlet, while others believe the area is popular because it is a "normal village".

One of the more adventurous theories is that the tourists are time-travellers, wishing to glimpse a thriving English village before it meets its demise when the UK leaves the European Union.

Another poster ventured: "Boring but sensible theory - The phenomenon is part of a combined tourism trip involving retail at Bicester (well known as a Chinese destination), the historic University at Oxford (ditto) and you guys are a 'folksy' cultural stop on the A34 between the two ... Enjoy."

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