OXFORD Mail reader's have overwhelmingly called for a long-vacant pub to be restored to its former glory.

The Priory Pub, located next to the Kassam Stadium, has been empty since June 2013. 

It was revealed yesterday the city council could take legal action against Firoz Kassam over the pub 'much missed' by Oxford United fans.

It is owned by Oxford City Council but on a 99-year lease to Firoka, a company owned by Mr Kassam.

Discussions between Mr Kassam and city council planners over bringing the Grade II listed building back into use have resulted in a stalemate.

Council leader Bob Price said officers would soon be in touch with the businessman.

In an online poll 85 per cent of readers backed plans to restore and reopen the building as a pub once more.

Commenting on the article, Treader70 wrote: "What a shame, such a lovely building, and yes, there were at least two trees which had preservation orders on them, I know this first hand as an ex Asst Manager of the pub.

"Needs a fortune spent on it to bring it back to its former glory, I hate to say this, but it would make a fantastic Restaurant/Gastro Pub."

On Facebook, Mark Bastin added: "It would make a great local if reopened. It was a fantastic place in its prime back in the 80s and 90s. Shame."

Firoka is currently advertising the building to let and described it as potentially a 'hotel, pub, bar or club' but warned it was subject to planning permission.

Mr Kassam said city council planners were 'happy to let it rot' and said discussions over bringing it back to life had come to nothing.

He said: "We have tried everything we can - nobody is playing ball on it, so it is sitting there rotting away until somebody comes to their senses and makes a commercial decision."

The Priory is more than 600 years old, having been built in the mid-1400s as a rebuild of part of Littlemore Priory, a nunnery founded in 1110.