RESIDENTS fear that ‘kids could die’ on the building site of a once-thriving boozer.

The Jack Russell pub in Marston once had punters spilling out of its doors, but in 2016 became unused and a ‘derelict eyesore’.

Despite a public campaign to save the pub from becoming a block of flats, the plans for the pub to be knocked down and replaced with 16 new homes across three storeys were given the go-ahead by Oxford City Council.

Now, years later, the contractors doing the work – H&S Construction Stoke – have left the site as it is, handed in their week's notice and walked away.

Oxford Mail:

The rubble left behind at the building site

Project manager Javaid Iqbal told the Oxford Mail that they had completed work up to the first floor, but added: “We have given them our notice, about a week ago, we will not longer be working on the site.”

He said the tower was not being finished by them for ‘financial reasons’.

City councillor for Marston Mick Haines said the site had been left in a bad way and the dangerous trench alongside the rubble could have a fatal outcome.

Oxford Mail:

Part of the trench which runs alongside the rubble

He said: “I worked in buildings in my life and if we left anything or any buildings in that state then we would be down the road.

“Its easy as anything for somebody to get in there and get injured, i’s really dangerous.

“The thing is, it's the kiddies which have been getting in there. There is a big trench which runs alongside the building site.

“The trench is really dangerous. And it could kill them [if they fell in], or injure them quite badly.”

However, Mr Iqbal said the safety of the site is down to the owner, and not how the contractors had left it.

He said if anything happened than the ‘client would be liable’.

A list of last week's planning applications

When plans were submitted for the mix of one, two and three-bed flats and maisonettes, the well-loved pub had already become an eyesore.

Soon after closing its doors indefinitely it was torn apart by vandals, the inside tarnished with graffiti and gutted of its copper fittings.

At the time, Old Marston parish councillor and Tony Greenfield told the Oxford Mail that security fencing should be installed around the site to prevent further damage.

Read about it here: Pub torn apart by vandals

Now, a secure fence could be the only solution to keep people away from danger.

Mr Haines explained: “There is hoarding, but they can easily remove that hoarding that is there and anyone could get in.

“It was wide open at one point and it really needs checking right out as it's really dangerous."

He added that the dangers were not the only reason residents were uneasy, adding: “It’s really ugly as well, it’s just stood there now.”