An agreement to move forward with talks over a new stadium for Oxford United  has been approved by the county council.

Oxfordshire County Council’s cabinet gave the thumbs up to a memorandum of understanding to guide talks between the two parties over a potential lease of council-owned land known as The Triangle at Kidlington at its March 21 meeting.

A plan for engaging with stakeholders and local communities was also agreed.

Cllr Calum Miller, cabinet member for finance, said: “Whether or not a stadium is built at The Triangle site is a significant decision for local people in this area, residents across the county and fans of Oxford United. As such, the decision and the process leading up to it needs to be as open and transparent as possible.

“We know that it is an urgent project for the club, who have outlined their need to find an alternative home before 2026.

“We are committed to responding promptly to them and to taking decisions in a timely way. That’s why officers were in touch with the club the day after the January cabinet meeting and regular discussions have been taking place ever since.

“We have now approved a timetable for the next stages and a memorandum of understanding with the club on the process in the coming months. The first step is for the club to provide further detailed proposals. We know they are working to deliver these.

“We have built into the proposed timetable a period of public and stakeholder engagement that will commence as soon as the club’s proposals have been received.

“It will focus on whether the club’s proposals address the council’s seven strategic priorities for the use of the land. In the meantime, we are encouraging the club to undertake their own engagement with local residents as their plans develop.

“We want everyone to be able to share their views with us before we take a final decision. The club’s need to find a new home is well understood, but any decision we take has to be guided by the overarching aim of whether it brings benefit to our community in Oxfordshire.”

Image: Google.

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