Oxford, The City of Dreaming Spires, is famous the world over for its University and place in history. For over 800 years, it has been a home to royalty and scholars, and since the 9th century an established town, although people are known to have lived in the area for thousands of years.
Oxford has a long and varied history. During the Tudor period, under the orders of Queen Mary, the Protestant Bishops, Latimer, Ridley and Cranmer were burned to death in front of Balliol College. A cross in the pavement outside Balliol and the more startling Martyrs Memorial in St Giles, commemorate this event.
In the 17th Century the court of King Charles I moved to Oxford during the Civil War, where he resided at Christ Church from 1642 to 1646. Unfortunately, Oliver Cromwell took his revenge in replacing a number of the Heads of Oxford Colleges at the end of the war in 1650.
Sir Christopher Wren, who attended Oxford University, was commissioned to design the famous Sheldonian Theatre, taking four years to build from 1664 to 1668, and which hosts all Oxford matriculation and graduation ceremonies, and numerous concerts.
Blenheim Palace, situated 8 miles from Oxford City,is home to the 11th Duke and Duchess of Marlborough and the birthplace of Sir Winston Churchill. Set in 2100 acres of beautiful parkland landscaped by ‘Capability’ Brown, the magnificent Palace is surrounded by sweeping lawns, award-winning formal gardens and the great Lake, offering a unforgettable day out for all.
With its mix of ancient and modern, there is plenty for both the tourist and resident to do. Whether it’s visiting one of the many historic buildings, colleges or museums, going out for a drink or a meal, taking in a show or shopping till you drop, Oxford has it all. Oxford is ideally located for commuting to London and Birmingham. The train journey takes 50-70 minutes from Oxford to either of the cities.