Students brave the rain in race for best place to live

Oxford Mail: James Routley, 19, a second year Trinity College engineering student, pictured right with Virginia Crespi de Valldaura, Buy this photo » James Routley, 19, a second year Trinity College engineering student, pictured right with Virginia Crespi de Valldaura,

SOAKED students have been queueing outside an Oxford lettings agency to make sure they get the accommodation they want.

Two cold and wet groups of friends have been taking it in turns to wait outside North Oxford Property Services in Jericho since 9am on Monday.

There were five groups by yesterday afternoon, and they have spent the nights in tents and under a gazebo erected by the letting company.

The yearly event sees queues waiting for the firm to release its list of student accommodation for the next academic year.

The list will be released today.

Last year, 60 people queued outside the shop on the day of the release and this year has seen queues from earlier than ever.

James Routley, 19, a second year Trinity College engineering student, has been taking part in three-hour shifts with friends.

He said: “We are doing it because there is a super-nice house we would like to get. It has been quite fun actually. There’s a good team spirit and people have been friendly.”

North Oxford Property Services director Debbie Swailes said: “It is the highest demand we have had.”

She said the company, which had been providing coffee and lunch for the queuers, had enough properties to cope with the demand.

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