• Sun. May 19th, 2024

Layla Moran wants Foxcome Hall extension plans scrapped


Sep 28, 2022

AN Oxfordshire MP wants the Government to refuse a Chinese university's application to expand its campus on the green belt despite local council approval.

Layla Moran, Liberal Democrat MP for Oxford West and Abingdon, said the ‘main beneficiary’ of Peking University HSBC Business School's (PHBS) plan will be ‘the Chinese state, not the local area’.

PHBS bought Foxcombe Hall in Boars Hill, in Oxford's green belt, in 2017 and plans were approved by Vale of White Horse District Council, the planning authority, earlier this month.

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Permission was granted to change the site's use from a non-residential education site to a residential one.

The final decision has been referred to the levelling up secretary, Simon Clarke.

However Ms Moran said: "This planning application would constitute a significant development in the green belt, which the Vale's Local Plan seeks to protect."

Paul Slater, planning agent for PHBS, said the school wants to provide a ‘world class environment’ for 135 students who will be based on the site.

Changes would include building 60 student bedrooms, a dining hall, a campus cafe and shop, gym and an extension to a lecture theatre. A laboratory building would also be demolished.

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The Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities confirmed the application is currently under consideration.

Read more from this author

This story was written by Gee Harland. She joined the team in 2022 as a senior multimedia reporter.

Gee covers Wallingford, Wantage and Didcot.

Get in touch with her by emailing: Gee.harland@newsquest.co.uk

Follow her on Twitter @Geeharland

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