A MAN in Blackbird Leys has been taken to hospital after a 'liquid attack' this morning, police say.

The incident in Knights Road at around 11.30am saw two men approach the 42-year-old victim in a public toilet and throw an 'unknown substance' from a clear bottle over him. 

UPDATE: 'Household bleach' was substance thrown

He felt a 'burning sensation' and ran to the nearby Post Office for help.

But, labelling the 'isolated' incident 'assault occasioning grievous bodily harm', police say his injuries 'are not believed to be serious.'

A number of Facebook posts have referred to an 'acid attack', but one person near the scene says she does not believe that was the substance involved, as emergency service swarmed on the area around Blackbird Leys Centre.

Oxford Mail: Picture: Derek Ó ConchobhairPicture: Derek Ó Conchobhair

The member of staff at Delteys supermarket, who asked not to be named, said police had taped off the entire pavement in front of the row of shops on Blackbird Leys Road from Martins newsagent round the public toilets.

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She said she had heard the liquid involved was not acid at all, but potentially a household cleaning product such as bleach. Police are currently trying to establish what the liquid was.

Oxford Mail reporter Tom Williams, who was on the scene, said the police cordon had been lifted just before 5pm and that Oxford City Council staff were cleaning the area, seemingly without specialised safety clothing.

The supermarket staff member said officers had indicated they could be on the scene for hours yet.

Asked about reports of a similar incident in Cowley, she said that friends in that area had told her there was no incident there at all, despite a number of Facebook posts to the contrary. Police have also made no reference to such an incident. 

The force said the two offenders in Blackbird Leys were two black men in dark clothing. A more detailed description is not currently available.

Another man who passed by the scene added: "The whole block of flats above the shops (is) secured with tape.

"(The) response team on the scene includes about seven police vehicles, including three special response units, four fire engines and about four ambulances.

"It must be very serious."

Investigating officer Detective Inspector Jess Milne, said: “I understand that this offence may cause concern in the community but I would like to reassure people that we believe this was an isolated incident and that a thorough investigation is underway.

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“Members of the public are likely to see an increased police presence in Blackbird Leys. Anyone with any concerns or questions should feel free to approach our officers."

She continued: “If anyone has any information about this incident, or those who are responsible for it, please call us on 101, quoting reference number 535 (16/6).

“Alternatively you can contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111, or make a report online.”