The owner of a 300-year-old Birmingham landmark hit by arson last year and subsequently partially demolished has vowed to rebuild the historic site.

The University of Birmingham's vice-principal has promised it will piece Northfield Manor back together brick by brick.

The historic property, once the home of the Cadbury family, was left in ruins last July after going up in flames.

It had been empty since 2007 after the university decided it was too expensive to upgrade.

The Post reported earlier this month how some of the oldest parts had been torn down by contractors, sparking anger from historians and local residents.

The university claimed the building, one of the 441 locally listed in Birmingham, had undergone further demolition to remove hazardous materials from the site in an effort to begin rebuilding the manor.

Officials claimed sections underneath the building were unstable and needed to be removed, sparking the demolition.

University vice-principal Professor Adam Tickell said: "Despite the need to demolish the majority of the structure, it remains the intention of the university the building will be rebuilt to mirror the external appearance of the original manor house."

The university said engineers advising on the project had reported the majority of the demolition would be completed by the end of July.

The 18th century building, in Bristol Road South, Northfield, was bought by the Cadbury family in 1890 and remained their home until 1953 when the university took it on as a hall of residence.

At the time of the fire, the manor house was awaiting planning permission from Birmingham City Council to be converted into flats.

Mr Tickell said: "This planning application has now been revived and includes provision for the rebuilding of the manor house.

"The university is saddened the fire has led to the substantial demolition of the building but the extent of the damage caused was such it posed an unacceptable risk to the safety of workers on site. The safety of employees, contractors and the public remains our number one priority."

West Midlands Police said the force was still hunting the arsonists who attacked the building.