THE UNIVERSITY must use its 'millions' to build more student accommodation on its campuses to put a stop to HMOs spreading across the rest of the city, a councillor has said.

Councillor Alan Amos said the "permanent solution" to preventing the onslaught of objections from angry neighbours disrupted by student houses suddenly appearing around the city - particularly in St John's - was for the ever-expanding University of Worcester to use its money to house its own students.

Cllr Amos made the claim during a city council planning meeting where councillors approved a plan to allow the conversion of a three-bed home into a four-room HMO in Penhill Crescent in St John's.

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He said: "The solution is that the university has millions of pounds at its disposal and it’s buying up half of Worcester as far as I can see. The permanent long-term solution to this is that they need to use some of their millions to build dedicated student accommodation on campus. Then you won’t have to have HMOs which are blighting so many areas and we don’t have to discuss any further students causing parking congestion.

“We’re not getting to the cause of the problem which is university is attracting more and more students and not providing accommodation that it has the means to do.”

Cllr Amos said it was not that fair that some homes in St John’s were ending up “sandwiched” between "wretched" HMOs and developers were “trawling the area for nice family houses” to convert. He said the Penhill Crescent plan was merely "part of the process" and the takeover of family homes for student accommodation in St John's would not stop.

University Vice Chancellor Professor David Green said the idea that students were driving residents out of St John's was " simply nonsense."

The university has already purchased the former Ambrose Farm site in Oldbury Road which it plans to use as a 'student village' and new accommodation at the university's St John's campus should open next year.

Prof Green said affordable housing was an issue for the government and the record by the Conservative government was "deplorable."

Prof Green said the university supported the council adopting the article 4 direction - which meant developers needed planning permission to convert a home into an HMO - in 2014.

He said: "It is entirely the council’s responsibility if they decide to license houses for multiple occupation – the university has never, ever lobbied for any such permission to be granted.

“We do enjoy an excellent relationship with the council in working together for safety in such premises and have every intention of continuing to work responsibly in the best interest of students and local residents.”