Delays hit opening of Brookes' new centre

An artist’s impression of the entrance to the new John Henry Brookes Building main entrance at Oxford Brookes University’s Headington campus

An artist’s impression of the entrance to the new John Henry Brookes Building main entrance at Oxford Brookes University’s Headington campus

First published in News thisisoxfordshire: Photograph of the Author by

THE flagship building of Oxford Brookes’ £132m redevlopment in Headington has been hit by delays.

Oxford Brookes University’s John Henry Brookes Building on the university’s Headington campus was due to be fully open in September, but will now open in phases between September and January.

A statement on the university’s website blamed the delay on a “challenging schedule” and said “build projects of this size and complexity do sometimes get delayed for a number of reasons.”

The university then refused to explain further what had caused the delays.

Registrar Paul Large said: “The building will open in phases during semester one of the 2013-14 academic year.

“This is as part of a phased opening contingency plan we are putting into place and will ensure a smooth transition into our new spaces.

“It will also give us the opportunity to test the new spaces with students and staff and incorporate any final feedback at an early stage.”

He added: “The building will bring together library and teaching space with social learning areas, a students’ union and essential support services.

The new building will transform the lives of our students through providing first-class spaces to think, teach, learn, study and live.”

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The facility will also include student support services, offering advice and information on everyday issues and problems.

Oxford Brookes spokesman Matthew Butler said the university was unable to be precise about what part of the building will open when but said: “The library will be quite a significant move.

“That will need to take place over the Christmas period.”

Brookes student officer Paul McCormack added: “For students it is going to be really fantastic.

“Having a place where student services and the union are in one hub is going to create a real sense of community for the students.

“I think it is going to be really vital.”

In July last year, the first phase of the redevelopment – the Abercrombie extension – was completed with the opening of environment studios, a new cafe and exhibition space.

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