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A framing firm that has worked with the likes of David Hockney and Francis Bacon has won its long-running battle to build a large student development.

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Art company John Jones has been given the go-ahead by the High Court to build a £70million student block, after Islington Council’s attempts to stop the plans were thrown out.

Work will finally start on the seven-storey structure in Morris Place, Finsbury Park, in the autumn.

The company says it is building 15 flats and 475 student rooms to fund a new workshop that will enable it to expand.

Matthew Jones, the managing director, said: “We are in desperate need of more space and this decision is great news for our business.

“I hope that now the judge has made his decision, we can move forward, working with the council for the benefit of Finsbury Park.”

Planning permission was granted in March last year by a planning inspector on appeal, after the council rejected the scheme.

It wanted affordable housing on the site.

Cllr James Murray, executive member for housing and development, said: “We believe a scheme with fewer student flats would still be feasible – it would bring new jobs for the area alongside new affordable housing.

“We are disappointed by the court’s decision and will decide our next steps in the coming weeks.”

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