PLANS have been submitted to convert the ground floor of the Royal Oxford Hotel in central Oxford to a new Sainsbury's Local store.

The supermarket chain has requested planning permission from Oxford City Council to revamp the building's exterior on Frideswide Square and Hythe Bridge Street.

An ATM will also be installed at the front of the new store, however, concious of potential security issues, Sainsbury's bosses have also requested permission to install a ram-raid bollard in front of the cash machine.

The application states: "The proposal will provide a high-quality shopfront which will enable the day to day operation of the retail unit."

Read again: Sainsbury's set to open in Frideswide Square hotel, Oxford

Addressing the ATM security, the application goes on: "A ram raid bollard in front of the ATM will also ensure the safety of both customers and the ATM itself."

Police are still hunting those responsible for a series of ram-raid style cash machine thefts across Oxfordshire.

The most recent happened at a Co-op in Didcot on Friday where thieves ripped entire ATM out of the wall using a digger.

The branch on the Ladygrove estate was left with a gaping hole in the wall where the ATM had been.

Read again: ATM raid at Co-Op branch in Ladygrove, Didcot

Sainsbury's new store will see the groundfloor of the building brought back in to use after the closure of Bamboo restaurant last year.

The application says: "A combination of careful design and the use of high quality materials will ensure the character and appearance of the listed buildings and their seeing are maintained."

Property consultants VSL said the space was being marketed for restaurants before Britain’s third largest supermarket chain snapped it up.

The supermarket giant, which also runs stores in Magdalen Street, St Aldate’s and the Westgate Centre, has bought a 15-year lease.