Premier Inn is to open its first city centre property in Oxford next year.

The chain already operates a hotel at Oxford Business Park, and also recently opened a 101-room property next to London Oxford airport.

But the 90-room Oxford Greyfriars Premier Inn will be the group’s first hotel in the centre of the city, located opposite Westgate Shopping Centre.

Construction of the new-build property had begun earlier this year, only for it to be temporarily halted due to the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic.

But as reported by Business Traveller over the weekend, Premier Inn’s owner Whitbread is now is reopening 35 construction sites across England and Wales.

The targeted opening for the new Oxford property is now summer 2021, with Whitbread’s development team working with contractors to put in place “strict new on-site controls and working practices to ensure social distancing and protect site workers and members of the public”.

Commenting on the news Richard Aldread, head of construction in the UK regions and Ireland for Premier Inn, said:

“The safety of our site teams has always been our number one priority when constructing new Premier Inn hotels, and it is more essential now than ever. The Government has been clear that construction activity is vital for the economy to bounce back, so we have been working closely with our contractor Carter Lauren to introduce additional controls and working practices on our Greyfriars development site.

“The measures we’re introducing are in line with the latest guidance from the Construction Leadership Council and will allow us to continue to build our flagship Oxford hotel with social distancing measures in place.”