PIZZA Hut has shut one of its Oxford restaurants, a year after it was embroiled in a row over signage.

The chain confirmed it has not renewed the lease on its High Street branch and the unit has been put up to let.

Last year the pizza seller took its case to the Government after Oxford City Council blocked an attempt to install bright new signage - but its appeal was rejected.

When asked, the restaurant refused to say whether the row was to blame for it shutting up shop.

A spokeswoman said: “We continually evaluate the location of our restaurants to ensure they are in the best possible areas to meet consumer demand.

“We have decided to close our Oxford High Street restaurant after the lease came to an end.

“We continue to have strong presence in the area with a very popular Hut on George Street, which will undergo an exciting new revamp this Autumn.”

At the restaurant yesterday, hoardings still state it is only ‘temporarily closed’ but the frontage has been taken down and a large lettings board put up.

In its original appeal Pizza Hut argued the High Street belonged to ‘the town rather than gown’ and it needed some ‘colour and interest’.

But the council hit back saying it was ‘absolutely crucial’ to protect the area’s historical importance.

Neighbouring traders expressed concerns that the battle would force Pizza Hut to leave - joining a string of departures from the street.