People fighting plans for a massive 20m Islamic centre are taking their campaign to John Prescott.

The Deputy Prime Minister will be urged to throw out the proposal despite its backing by Oxford City Council.

The Oxford Centre for Islamic Studies, planned for land owned by Magdalen College, off Marston Road, was given the go-ahead by officials.

Centre bosses and the college, as well as planning committee chairman Cllr Maureen Christian, believe the project will be a valuable asset to the city. A new home has been sought for the centre for the past five years. The building will include a 108ft tower and a 75ft dome. It will be built next to Mesopotamia Walk, a popular beauty spot.

The plan has the backing of Prince Charles and King Fahd of Saudi Arabia.

But some residents believe the scheme will ruin the area, and claim that the building is too big and will cost valuable green space.

Landscape designer David McQuitty said they refused to be silenced, and vowed that the fight would go on.

He said: "We believe this is a wrong decision. We will be writing to Mr Prescott, who has the final say on the scheme, to ask him to throw it out. "This green space is a precious asset we cannot afford to lose."

Mr McQuitty and fellow residents will also ask the minister to consider a public inquiry into the project.

Cllr Christian told the council last week: "We have the opportunity to build a beautiful building right here in Oxford a building we can all be proud of. It will add to the city's world-class skyline and its beautiful spires."