Oxfordshire (abbreviated Oxon, from Oxonium, the Latin name for Oxford) is a landlocked county in South East England. The ceremonial county borders Warwickshire to the north-west, Northamptonshire to the north-east, Buckinghamshire to the east, Berkshire to the south, Wiltshire to the south-west and Gloucestershire to the west.
The county has major education and tourist industries and is noted for concentrations of performance motorsport, car manufacturing and technology companies. Oxford University Press is the largest firm among a concentration of print and publishing firms; the University of Oxford is also linked to the concentration of local biotechnology companies.
As well as the city of Oxford, other centres of population are Banbury, Bicester, Kidlington and Chipping Norton to the north of Oxford; Carterton and Witney to the west; Thame and Chinnor to the east; and Abingdon-on-Thames, Wantage, Didcot, Wallingford and Henley-on-Thames to the south. The areas south of the Thames, the Vale of White Horse and parts of South Oxfordshire, are in the historic county of Berkshire, as is the highest point, the 261 metres (856 ft) White Horse Hill.
Oxfordshire community action[edit | edit source]
Sustainability initiatives[edit | edit source]
- Earth Trust, is an environmental learning charity (not-for-profit organisation) established to promote environmental conservation through land management, education, and land science, based in Little Wittenham.
- Earth Trust hosts a full programme of events each year, including countryside management courses, taster workshops and family festivals. They are best known for their Lambing Weekends in spring, which were attended by over 8,000 people in 2016.
- Earth Trust relies on the support of volunteers who carry out a range of tasks, including habitat management on their nature reserves, administration in the office, and support during education sessions and events. In 2016 the hard work of the Earth Trust Volunteers was recognised when they received The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service – the MBE for volunteer groups. W / Earth Trust Centre W, Earth Trust
Climate action[edit | edit source]
Biodiversity[edit | edit source]
Community involvement[edit | edit source]
Community Action Groups, network of local voluntary groups in Oxfordshire involved in community led climate change action.
Arts, sport and culture[edit | edit source]
OYAP Trust, formerly the Oxfordshire Youth Arts Partnership, is a UK-based charity involved in the education of young people through participation in the arts. The trust aims to develop skills, confidence and self-esteem and give vulnerable young people access to mainstream education, arts and training opportunities. OYAP Trust works with young people to create a brighter future for communities. W
Community energy[edit | edit source]
Abingdon Hydro - Osney Lock Hydro - People’s Power Station, online platform showing the impact this ‘positive energy’ is making in Oxfordshire - Southill Community Energy - Westmill Solar Co-operative
Cycling activism[edit | edit source]
National Cycle Routes in or around Oxfordshire include Route 5 W, running from Reading to Holyhead, via Oxford; and Route 51 W, running broadly east-west connecting Colchester and the port of Harwich to Oxford.
Environment quality[edit | edit source]
Cleaner, Greener Oxford, Oxford City Council campaign - OxClean, Oxford Civic Society initiative dedicated to keeping Oxford clean and tidy - Oxford Flood Network, making a citizen-built flood detection network in Oxford, based on river levels, groundwater and local knowledge.
Food activism[edit | edit source]
Health and wellbeing[edit | edit source]
The Sonning Common Health Walks was set up in 1996 by Dr William Bird, who is a general practitioner in Reading, Berkshire, England. The walks aim to reduce heart disease, reduce cholesterol and blood pressure, relieve depression and anxiety, reduce stress, help with weight management / obesity, and help with diabetes. Each walk is led by a Leader who is a trained volunteer. The leaders know the route. You walk at your own pace but you are advised to stretch yourself to raise your heart rate and get you breathing faster.
Bird set up health walks from his practice in Sonning Common, Oxfordshire, and then worked with the Countryside Agency and the British Heart Foundation to expand it nationally.
Open spaces[edit | edit source]
Parks and open spaces in Oxfordshire (category) W
Oxfordshire contains a green belt area that fully envelops the city of Oxford, and extends for some miles to afford a protection to surrounding towns and villages from inappropriate development and urban growth. Its border in the east extends to the Buckinghamshire county boundary, while part of its southern border is shared with the North Wessex Downs AONB. It was first drawn up in the 1950s, and all the county's districts contain some portion of the belt.
Reduce, reuse, repair and recycle[edit | edit source]
Bicester Green, independent social enterprise, led by the local community. Main activities are repair and refurbishment of items, such as small electricals, wooden furniture, and bicycles. - Oxfordshire Waste Partnership
Sharing[edit | edit source]
- SHARE Oxford- A Library of Things
Sustainable transport activism[edit | edit source]
The Oxford Green Belt Way is a long-distance path in Oxfordshire, England. It follows a circular route of 50 miles (80 km) through the Oxford Green Belt surrounding the city of Oxford. The route was devised in 2007 to mark the Campaign to Protect Rural England 75th anniversary and to highlight the importance of the Green Belt. On its launch each mile on the route marks one year since the designation of the greenbelts in 1956.
The central part of Oxfordshire contains the River Thames with its flat floodplains; the river forms the historic county boundary with Berkshire. The Thames Path National Trail parallels the river as it crosses Oxfordshire, continuing towards London. There are many smaller rivers that feed into the Thames such as the Thame, Windrush, Evenlode and Cherwell. Some of these rivers have trails running along their valleys. The Oxford Canal follows the Cherwell from Banbury to Kidlington.
Footpaths in Oxfordshire, (category) W
The Oxford Canal is a 78-mile (126 km) narrow canal in central England linking Oxford with Bedworth (between Coventry and Nuneaton on the Coventry Canal) via Banbury and Rugby. Completed in 1790, it connects to the River Thames at Oxford and is integrated with the Grand Union Canal—combined for 5 miles (8 km) close to the villages of Braunston and Napton-on-the-Hill, a canal which soon after construction superseded much of its traffic.
The canal was for about 15 years the main canal artery of trade between the Midlands and London; it retained importance in its local county economies and that of Berkshire. Today the canal is frequently used for weekend and holiday narrowboat pleasure boating.
The Oxford Canal traverses Oxfordshire, Northamptonshire and east Warwickshire through broad, shallow valleys and lightly rolling hills; resembling the bulk of the Grand Union Canal and its branches, much of the landscape is similar to the those of the Llangollen and Lancaster canals. It has frequent wharves and public houses, particularly if including the parts of the Grand Union Canal immediately adjoining. North of about a third of its distance, namely from Napton, the canal's route northeast and then northwest forms part of the Warwickshire ring. At its southern extremity it forms a waterway circuit within Oxford known as the Four Rivers.
The Wilts & Berks Canal Trust is a registered charity no. 299595, and a waterway society based in Wiltshire, England, concerned with the restoration of the Wilts & Berks Canal.
The Trust is the successor to the Wilts & Berks Canal Amenity Group (formed in 1977) and a founder member of the Wiltshire, Swindon & Oxfordshire Canal Partnership, which embraces the Trust, the local authorities for the areas through which the route of the canal passes, statutory bodies, and other interested parties. The Trust's headquarters are at Dauntsey Lock, adjacent to the canal between Chippenham and Royal Wootton Bassett.
To protect, conserve and improve the route of the Wilts & Berks Canal, North Wilts Canal, and branches, for the benefit of the community and environment, with the ultimate goal of restoring a continuous navigable waterway linking the Kennet and Avon Canal near Melksham, the River Thames near Abingdon, and the Thames and Severn Canal near Cricklade.
Resources[edit | edit source]
Citizens data initiative[edit | edit source]
- Who Owns Oxford?, project started by a group of Oxford citizens who believe that more transparency on land ownership leads to better decisions on how land could be used across the county. added 12:50, 14 April 2021 (UTC)
Community resources[edit | edit source]
- Makespace Oxford, "Truly affordable workspace in central Oxford"
News and comment[edit | edit source]
Oxford council backs bid to stop water firm dumping sewage in Thames, Oct 9 
'UK's first tiny forest' in Witney helps urban environment, Mar 10 
City Council responds to Oxford Citizens’ Assembly on Climate Change and outlines £19m climate emergency budget, Dec 16 
'We can go quicker than 2050' - Citizens assembly votes for ambitious city climate target, Oct 20 
The library of things: could borrowing everything from drills to disco balls cut waste and save money? Apr 24 
This disastrous new project will change the face of Britain, yet no debate is allowed, George Monbiot, Aug 22 
Oxford aims for world’s first zero emissions zone with petrol car ban, Oct 12 
One part of Oxford seems to be getting more and more vegetarian, Jan 4 
OXONBIKE brings electric bike hire scheme to city centre, Oct 10 
Pupils to help raise awareness and tackle air quality around Oxford’s schools, Jun 8 
100 electric car charging stations to be installed around Oxford in world's biggest scheme, January 25 
Oxford's aspirations to host the first double decker wireless electric bus project, March 16 
Oxford Council first UK authority to pass divestment motion, September 16 
Pioneering community renewables in Oxford, July 11 
Events[edit | edit source]
Jun 17 - 25 Oxford Green Week, previously known as Low Carbon Oxford Week
Apr 5 - 6 Your Green Future
June 11 - 19 Low Carbon Oxford Week
Low Carbon Oxford Week_Jenny Carr_Oxford City Council, PowerPoint Presentation
June 14 - 22 Low Carbon Oxford Week
June 14 Good Food Oxford Launch Fest
Campaigns[edit | edit source]
See also[edit | edit source]
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