SLOUGH is in talks with China about its plans to bring a satellite university back to the town, it emerged this week.

Leader of the council, James Swindlehurst (Lab, Cippenham Green), said that there could be a desire from China to send their students to Slough to study, once a campus was up and running.

He told The Observer at the Labour Group’s manifesto launch on Wednesday, that too many sixth form students were leaving town once they scooped their A levels.

He said: “We need to keep hold of our sixth form students – they all go elsewhere for university, meaning we often never see them again. We want to keep our talent.

“We’ve been in conversations with the Chinese about provisions for their students. If we can get the head count, combined with the locals, we can to start to get a satellite campus of our own.”

As reported by The Observer last year, The former Thames Valley University (TVU) site in Wellington Street was a candidate for the new site. It is understood that Slough Borough Council would have to find an existing university interested in having a satellite building – rather than establishing its own university. A spokesperson previously said this could even be a research facility (R and D). TVU was a satellite university but left town in 2010.

Meanwhile Cllr Swindlehurst also unveiled plans to introduce a ‘Slough Card’ to the town, which could potentially offer residents similar discounts and benefits to those offered in the Royal Borough through its Advantage Card. This could also offer priority access to council services, he said.

Cllr Swindlehurst confirmed that the manifesto had been fully costed by the council directors.

Closing his opening speech, he said he felt positive about the borough council elections on May 3. He said: “Anyone who has been to our meetings can see we are leagues away from the other side.

“We had a clean sweep in 2012, and I think we can have a good go at it this year.”

The MP for Slough, Tan Dhesi had introduced the manifesto at Slough Aspire in Edinburgh Avenue, and said: “I’m proud of the fact that we have been voted the best place to work and live, and are also the most productive town per capita in the country.

“There is no reason we can’t get a clean sweep of council seats.”