Planning minister condemns Oxford City Council and University over Castle Mill buildings

Nicky Moeran, of Save Port Meadow, housing minister Nick Boles and Oxford West and Abingdon MP Nicola Blackwood with the controversial Castle Mill buildings in the background

Nicky Moeran, of Save Port Meadow, housing minister Nick Boles and Oxford West and Abingdon MP Nicola Blackwood with the controversial Castle Mill buildings in the background

First published in News
Last updated
The Oxford Times: Photograph of the Author by , Council Reporter, also covering Oxford city centre. Call me on 01865 425429

OXFORD’S controversial Castle Mill buildings have been branded a “disgrace” by a Government minister.

Planning minister Nick Boles visited Oxford today to talk to campaigners about the Oxford University student accommodation buildings.

He criticised both Oxford University and Oxford City Council for allowing the buildings near Port Meadow to be given planning permission in their existing form.

Mr Boles said: “Both the university and the council have a responsibility to the community of Oxford to do something about it, to lessen the impact of these buildings and to make sure that the process in future never allows something like this to happen again.

“What we can all see, looking at these buildings, is that the colour of them is obtrusive, that the materials are obtrusive, and the scale of them is obtrusive.”

He said both the university and the city council owe an apology to the people of Oxford.

 

Comments (6)

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5:18pm Thu 16 Jan 14

Sophia says...

AT LAST someone in power is speaking truth and common sense about his architectural atrocity! Thanks, its what we the public have been saying for months and moths with the Council carefully not listening and the Uni waiting for the plebs to realise that the Uni couldnt not give a flying fox what the plebs in the town think about this or anything else.

As the man says:

MITIGATE THE DAMAGE

APOLOGISE

NEVER LET IT HAPPEN AGAIN
AT LAST someone in power is speaking truth and common sense about his architectural atrocity! Thanks, its what we the public have been saying for months and moths with the Council carefully not listening and the Uni waiting for the plebs to realise that the Uni couldnt not give a flying fox what the plebs in the town think about this or anything else. As the man says: MITIGATE THE DAMAGE APOLOGISE NEVER LET IT HAPPEN AGAIN Sophia
  • Score: -49

8:52pm Thu 16 Jan 14

Whitto says...

This from a man in a Government that is pushing through HS2 to ruin swathes of countryside - what a hypocrite.
This from a man in a Government that is pushing through HS2 to ruin swathes of countryside - what a hypocrite. Whitto
  • Score: -34

9:26pm Thu 16 Jan 14

Oflife says...

Well it's a bit late! I have travelled all over the world, (Lake District, Brecon Beacons, Grand Canyon, Yosemite, King's Canyon, and various other fantastic locations), and yet Port Meadow, for so many reasons, is my favourite place on Earth.

Oxford is an ultra liberal city - in fact, the most frighteningly liberal location I have ever lived and worked in in my life (hence such a useless response to serious crime and appalling treatment of motorists), yet for all the grandstanding, they allowed this building to go up? Who was paid off? And how much?

Can the Oxford Mail please investigate.

How much will it cost to pay the residents to leave so the building can be demolished and Port Meadow allowed to return to being an escape from 'today'.
Well it's a bit late! I have travelled all over the world, (Lake District, Brecon Beacons, Grand Canyon, Yosemite, King's Canyon, and various other fantastic locations), and yet Port Meadow, for so many reasons, is my favourite place on Earth. Oxford is an ultra liberal city - in fact, the most frighteningly liberal location I have ever lived and worked in in my life (hence such a useless response to serious crime and appalling treatment of motorists), yet for all the grandstanding, they allowed this building to go up? Who was paid off? And how much? Can the Oxford Mail please investigate. How much will it cost to pay the residents to leave so the building can be demolished and Port Meadow allowed to return to being an escape from 'today'. Oflife
  • Score: -79

9:28pm Thu 16 Jan 14

Oflife says...

Sophia wrote:
AT LAST someone in power is speaking truth and common sense about his architectural atrocity! Thanks, its what we the public have been saying for months and moths with the Council carefully not listening and the Uni waiting for the plebs to realise that the Uni couldnt not give a flying fox what the plebs in the town think about this or anything else.

As the man says:

MITIGATE THE DAMAGE

APOLOGISE

NEVER LET IT HAPPEN AGAIN
There is a bug in the voting system. I gave you a LIKE, and it changed your score of minus 20 to minus 21! I think you have plus 21 votes!
[quote][p][bold]Sophia[/bold] wrote: AT LAST someone in power is speaking truth and common sense about his architectural atrocity! Thanks, its what we the public have been saying for months and moths with the Council carefully not listening and the Uni waiting for the plebs to realise that the Uni couldnt not give a flying fox what the plebs in the town think about this or anything else. As the man says: MITIGATE THE DAMAGE APOLOGISE NEVER LET IT HAPPEN AGAIN[/p][/quote]There is a bug in the voting system. I gave you a LIKE, and it changed your score of minus 20 to minus 21! I think you have plus 21 votes! Oflife
  • Score: -79

8:55am Fri 17 Jan 14

Andrew:Oxford says...

Lots of Nics...

The buildings don't look too imposing when you have a very tall chap standing in front of them.

He must be about 6'6" - either that or the ladies are very small.
Lots of Nics... The buildings don't look too imposing when you have a very tall chap standing in front of them. He must be about 6'6" - either that or the ladies are very small. Andrew:Oxford
  • Score: -57

12:33pm Fri 17 Jan 14

King Joke says...

THere is absolutely no reason whatsoever to apologise for these flats. They are high-density low-car flats which make good use of brownfield land close to a busy transport hub and within easy reach of the city centre. By providing purpose-built student accommodation they relieve pressure on residential streets to accommodate students. I regularly walk my mutts on Port Meadow, and the impact of these battleship-grey flats poking barely above the existing roof/treeline is minimal.

In short they are the right buildings in the right place and their visual impact has been grossly overstated.
THere is absolutely no reason whatsoever to apologise for these flats. They are high-density low-car flats which make good use of brownfield land close to a busy transport hub and within easy reach of the city centre. By providing purpose-built student accommodation they relieve pressure on residential streets to accommodate students. I regularly walk my mutts on Port Meadow, and the impact of these battleship-grey flats poking barely above the existing roof/treeline is minimal. In short they are the right buildings in the right place and their visual impact has been grossly overstated. King Joke
  • Score: -34

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