Treacle Well

There are certain, special places where the modern world feels very far away. As you pass through the wooden gate into St Margaret’s churchyard, Binsey, the relentless thrum of the ring road seems to recede into the distance, and time starts to ... CONTINUE READING

By |October 13th, 2023|Categories: People|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |Comments Off on Treacle Well

The Beaches of Oxford

It’s always worth reminding oneself of the benefits of a philosophical education. Parson’s Pleasure is a secluded stretch of grass embankment leading down to the River Cherwell at the point, just before you reach the land known as Mesopotamia, where the ... CONTINUE READING

By |September 15th, 2023|Categories: Places|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |Comments Off on The Beaches of Oxford

Oxford and Stratford

With perfect patriotic symmetry, William Shakespeare, England’s greatest playwright, was born and died on the same day: St George's, 23 April (1564 -1616). The first folio of his collected dramatic works, published four hundred years ago in 1623, is visitable at ... CONTINUE READING

By |April 23rd, 2023|Categories: People|Tags: , , , , , , , |Comments Off on Oxford and Stratford

Feedback 2022

We’re fast approaching 2023, and all the excitements of a New Year. Before we finally ring out the old, however, let’s take a moment to reflect on the extraordinary year that was 2022. Click on the images below to reveal the Stories behind ... CONTINUE READING

By |December 21st, 2022|Categories: Information|Comments Off on Feedback 2022

Henry Taunt 100

Imagine, if you can, a world before mass tourism and before the internal combustion engine. A world where the summers were languid and the air smelt sweet. A world devoid of selfie sticks. ‘Those ancient courts and quadrangles and cloisters ... CONTINUE READING

By |November 4th, 2022|Categories: People|Tags: , , , , , , , |Comments Off on Henry Taunt 100

St Frideswide’s Door

The great architectural historian Nikolaus Pevsner had little time for St Frideswide’s Church in Osney. ‘Violently high Victorian’ was his verdict; an example of architectural ‘ruthlessness’, with its ‘very low octagonal central tower’ and ‘stunted north transept … squeezed in between ... CONTINUE READING

By |October 14th, 2022|Categories: People, Places|Tags: , , , , , |Comments Off on St Frideswide’s Door

Cherwell Boathouse

The punting station beside the Cherwell Boathouse has a very different personality from its two bigger siblings downstream – at Magdalen and Folly Bridge. It’s altogether harder to locate for a start ­– tucked away since 1904 at the end of ... CONTINUE READING

By |July 14th, 2022|Categories: Places|Tags: , , , , , , , , , |Comments Off on Cherwell Boathouse

Round Hill, Port Meadow

On frosty winter days or in the lengthening evenings of May its profile can be picked out easily if you know where to look. On a grey morning with angled light it melts mysteriously into the surrounding grassland. Four thousand years haven’t ... CONTINUE READING

By |May 19th, 2022|Categories: Places|Tags: , , , , , |Comments Off on Round Hill, Port Meadow

Cuckoos and Blackbirds

There’s something unmistakably romantic about Cuckoo Lane – and not just the name. Perhaps it’s because it seems to emerge from such a completely unremarkable place – a residential cul-de-sac – before it begins its snickety ascent of Headington Hill. Perhaps ... CONTINUE READING

By |April 20th, 2022|Categories: Places|Tags: , , , , |Comments Off on Cuckoos and Blackbirds

Feedback 2021

Yuletide Greetings! We’re fast approaching Morris Oxford’s third Christmas: a time for celebration, commemoration, consumption – and possibly even combustion. Before we finally ring out the old and bring in the new, let’s take a moment to reflect on the extraordinary year ... CONTINUE READING

By |December 21st, 2021|Categories: Information|Comments Off on Feedback 2021

Balloon Madness

Early on the morning of 4 October 1784 a thirty-one-year-old pastry cook by the name of James Sadler took off close to Merton Field in a hot-air balloon. ‘I perceived no Inconvenience,’ he later commented, ‘and being disengaged from all terrestrial Things, ... CONTINUE READING

By |October 4th, 2021|Categories: People|Tags: , , , , , , , |Comments Off on Balloon Madness

Peacocks and Trout

Quick! Out of the car park (thank goodness it’s too difficult for coaches to get here), across the narrow road (eyes right for the even narrower medieval bridge), through the porch (note the Stonesfield slate roof), over the flagstones (part of the ... CONTINUE READING

By |June 21st, 2021|Categories: Places|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , |Comments Off on Peacocks and Trout

Crotch Crescent

You don’t have to be in the back seat of the car playing ‘I Spy’ to find yourself screaming out the names of certain Oxford road signs. Of all the streets in our fair city none quite matches Crotch Crescent. Squitchey ... CONTINUE READING

By |May 20th, 2021|Categories: Places|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |Comments Off on Crotch Crescent


Once upon a time there were three abbeys in Oxford: Godstow, Osney, and Rewley. Along came King Henry VIII. Then there were none. All that remains of Rewley Abbey (founded by Cistercian monks at the end of the thirteenth century) is ... CONTINUE READING

By |April 22nd, 2021|Categories: People|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , |Comments Off on Godstow

The Morris Oxford Mini-History of Oxford

The clocks have gone forward – and there’s a full moon tonight. What’s more ... The Morris Oxford Mini-History of Oxford  is published  TODAY It’s concise. It’s historical. It’s about Oxford. ‘Absolutely brilliant.’ ‘Wow! I never knew that.’ ‘Without doubt my book of ... CONTINUE READING

By |March 28th, 2021|Categories: Places|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , |Comments Off on The Morris Oxford Mini-History of Oxford

John Bigg’s Other Shoe

This month’s story was supposed to have been about the ruined abbey of Godstow, but the response to Bradshaw’s Hat has been so rich and so interesting that we feel compelled to postpone the Dissolution for a while. Martin Sheppard, distinguished publisher of ... CONTINUE READING

By |February 26th, 2021|Categories: Things|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , |Comments Off on John Bigg’s Other Shoe

Bradshaw’s Hat

At two o’clock on the bitterly cold afternoon of Saturday 30 January 1649, King Charles I stepped out from the balcony of the Banqueting House, Whitehall, and onto the executioner’s scaffold … A few minutes later, the masked axeman held up ... CONTINUE READING

By |January 30th, 2021|Categories: People|Tags: , , , , , , , , , |Comments Off on Bradshaw’s Hat

Counting down

The Morris Oxford Countdown to Christmas begins today ... Visit out Instagram page (@morrisoxfordmorrisoxford) to see the scores on the doors.

By |December 1st, 2020|Categories: People|Comments Off on Counting down

A Little More Allotment

Mrs Thatcher was not a friend of allotments, despite (or perhaps because of) being a grocer’s daughter from the famously potato-growing county of Lincolnshire. In July 1980 her government attempted to repeal Section 8 of the 1925 Act. Had she succeeded ... CONTINUE READING

By |September 17th, 2020|Categories: Things|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , |Comments Off on A Little More Allotment


The Right Worshipful Lord Mayor of Oxford, Mrs E F M Standingford, couldn’t quite believe her eyes as she stepped decorously through the gates of Osney, St Thomas and New Botley allotments, one warm August afternoon in 1986. Patiently waiting for her ... CONTINUE READING

By |August 21st, 2020|Categories: Things|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |Comments Off on Allotments

Swing Bridge

Once it was pivotal. Now, ivy-clad and rusting, it tells of an era long since past. Yet still it retains a grandeur and a fascination, like the mouldering carcass of some giant metal dinosaur. It’s a railway swing bridge. It dates ... CONTINUE READING

By |July 23rd, 2020|Categories: Things|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |Comments Off on Swing Bridge

A River Runs Through It

Running through every story on this website is a silver thread: the river which has shaped Oxford’s destiny, indeed the very reason for Oxford’s existence. The water even takes on a different name as it flows here, turning briefly from Thames to ... CONTINUE READING

By |June 23rd, 2020|Categories: Places|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |Comments Off on A River Runs Through It


We have just witnessed something unprecedented in the history of Oxford: EMPTY STREETS. The photographs below were recorded by Stephen Foote – a professional cameraman, Oxford born and bred – over the course of two April days in 2020. ... CONTINUE READING

By |May 19th, 2020|Categories: Places|Comments Off on Lockdown


We received a number of disturbing reports following our most recent posting on Microbes and Medicine. Dr John Radcliffe appeared to have fallen on his side, his magnificent statue having, for some unfathomable computerish reason, rotated 90° to the left. We are ... CONTINUE READING

By |April 28th, 2020|Categories: People|Comments Off on JR


Morris Oxford is a year old today: Morris Oxford the website that is. Morris Oxford the car first rolled off the production line over a century ago, in 1913. Both are works of devotion and local pride. One was a business which went ... CONTINUE READING

By |March 28th, 2020|Categories: Information|Comments Off on Feedback

Park Town Arch

In his article on ‘The Expansion of Towns - Planned and Unplanned' [Journal of the Town Planning Institute, 43 (1957), p.106] D.W. Riley identifies certain towns as possessing 'an efficiency, culture, and charm which are the gradually matured expression of generations of ... CONTINUE READING

By |September 10th, 2019|Categories: Places|Tags: , , , , , , |Comments Off on Park Town Arch

Flying Over Wolvercote

The members of Oxford Model Flying Club (which celebrated its half-century in 2019) consider Port Meadow to be one of their most important and highly prized gathering places. These aren’t people playing with annoying drones. They are cognoscenti, devoted to lovingly ... CONTINUE READING

By |August 20th, 2019|Categories: Things|Tags: , , , , , , , |Comments Off on Flying Over Wolvercote


Stretched out along the canal they lie, from Wolvercote to Hythe Bridge, in every shade and hue, from psychedelic hippy swirls, via sensible dark-blue college livery, to load-bearing gunmetal greys and rusty blacks. And it’s not just the canalboats themselves which ... CONTINUE READING

By |July 11th, 2019|Categories: Things|Tags: , , , , , , |Comments Off on Canalboats

Einstein’s Blackboard

If you like astrolabes, Oxford is the place for you. There are 170 of them in the History of Science Museum. And not just astrolabes. There are also (according to Christopher and Edward Hibbert’s magisterial Encyclopædia of Oxford) ‘armillary spheres, orreries, globes, ... CONTINUE READING

By |June 13th, 2019|Categories: People|Tags: , , , |Comments Off on Einstein’s Blackboard

Binsey Poplars

The thatched cottages of the picture-postcard village of Binsey lie little more than a mile from the railway station. Its farm, Medley Manor, is a pick-your-own cornucopia. Its twelfth-century church protects a holy well dedicated to Frideswide, Oxford’s patron saint. And its ... CONTINUE READING

By |May 22nd, 2019|Categories: People|Tags: , , , , , |Comments Off on Binsey Poplars

Martyrs’ Cross

Far at the end of the long sweep of St Giles, dark and pointedly brooding (some say it resembles the needling spire of a subterranean church) lurks the Martyrs’ Memorial, one of Oxford’s best-known monuments. It is a grim reminder of ... CONTINUE READING

By |April 17th, 2019|Categories: People|Tags: , , , , , , , , |Comments Off on Martyrs’ Cross