The University bought a seven- bedroom house in Oxford for its former head of fundraising, The Oxford Student has discovered.
The house, which the University bought for £1m, is now worth up to £1.8m, according to local estate agents.
Documents filed at the Land Registry show that the University purchased the house in 2005, the year it appointed the former Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Development and External Affairs, Jon Dellandrea.
Senior academics – including several members of the University’s governing body – have expressed surprise at the revelations this week, saying they were kept in the dark by the University.
Dellandrea came to Oxford from the University of Toronto, where he had headed their fundraising operation, to launch the “Oxford Thinking” campaign.
Controversy surrounded his departure in 2008. At the time, The Daily Telegraph claimed that Dellandrea had fallen out with an influential American donor, who allegedly called Dellandrea “obtuse” and “uncooperative”. The University has always contested this.
A valuer at Oxford estate agent James C. Penny said it was a “substantial detached house”.
He added: “It’s unusual to have seven bedrooms in Oxford – it’s rather big.”