CONTROVERSIAL Oxford University student flats have been given a green new look.

Campaigners had fought for the top storey to be taken off the Castle Mill flats off Roger Dudman Way but a four-year fight finished in 2016 when the university chose a £6m screening option instead.


Now five ‘living walls’ have been installed across the site, accompanied by a sophisticated automatic watering system that graduate accommodation and university parks staff are being trained to use.

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The Oxford University graduate accommodation website said: “The improvements are designed to reduce the buildings’ visual impact on the local environment and to improve building performance; they include steps such as repainting walls, replacing cladding and windows, and landscaping, for example planting large numbers of mature trees around the site.”


City councillor Susanna Pressel said: “The University should never have designed these enormous buildings, which spoil the view from Port Meadow and Jericho. They should certainly never have been given planning permission.


"Now at last they are doing something to reduce the damage they have caused.

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"Some of the bright white walls have been covered with luxuriant plants, which will help to make them less of an eyesore.”