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Brookes sells off old hostel
OXFORD Brookes University is selling an accommodation block to an international school.
Cotuit Hall in Pullens Lane, Headington is to become an A-Level boarding academy.
The hall, close to the main Oxford Brookes campus on Gipsy Lane, is able to accommodate at least 100 students.
But the sale has provoked complaints that, rather than selling buildings, Brookes should be doing everything it can to accommodate more of its students, to reduce pressure on private rented accommodation.
Residents have complained that areas of East Oxford and Headington are becoming student ghettos.
EF International Academy will use the Cotuit Hall site to house 16- to 18-year-olds from abroad studying two-year A-Level and International Baccalaureate courses to try to get into UK universities.
Brookes registrar Paul Large said the university was planning to house 300 students in a new development on the former Dorset House School site in nearby London Road.
Mr Large added: “This will be accommodation that is far more suitable to our current needs.
“We’re extremely confident we’ll maintain our commitment to reduce the number of Brookes students living in private housing.”
But Elizabeth Mills, chairman of Divinity Road Area Residents’ Association, said: “It doesn’t help the pressure on the community, and the numbers of houses of multiple occupation in the area, if accommodation that is appropriate for under- graduate students is sold off.
“In Divinity Road, only six of the first 30 homes have permanent residents. The rest are students. The challenge to Brookes is to redress the balance.”