NB UK is still in lockdown so we’re still on Zoom only at present… but I imagine when we are allowed to meet, there will still be people who can’t be in Oxford because it’s too far away or they are still shielding, so Zoom will continue, even if it is from the park.
Over the summer, we have been testing out locations for both a Zoom connection (via my phone) (See Tune of the Month page for link) for those who want or need to stay home and a quiet and non-disturbing place (for others) for us to play at a safe distance from one another outside.
For the foreseeable future (lockdowns permitting), we are going to use the Bandstand in Florence Park. It has the advantage of rain cover (and this proved excellent in a fierce rain storm in October). There is also plenty of space to park (in Rymers Lane) or in the Car Park (which is near the corner of Rymers Lane and Cornwallis Road). And beside the car park, there is also a cafe (Flo’s Cafe open on Sundays until 4pm) and also public toilets. The bandstand is at the north east corner of the park (see map) and here’s a link to it on Open Street Map.
If you plan on coming to the session, please read the Covid precautions page and send me your contact details (see form on page) beforehand.
I recommend fingerless gloves and lots of warm layers for the winter months ahead!
The bandstand has the advantage of providing somewhere to sit, but you might like to bring a camping stool (or such like) just in case and a music stand if you like to read music… however, paper weights or clothes pegs are also pretty essential. Some people just use the music on the website on a tablet instead which doesn’t blow away so easily in the wind!
I’ve found a nice route to walk or cycle to the bandstand avoiding main roads and we have to finish before it gets dark (because the park closes) so it’s an ok route to return by. I’ve marked the route along the river towpath in purple and you can join it from near the Oxford train station or from past the Police Station on St Aldates, at Folly Bridge.
I’ve left the details of our other outdoor locations below in case we want to return to those places…
Since June, we have met at: Grandpont Nature Park (link to Open Street Map). We play close to the wooden posts (carved fingers) that you can just see from the end of the Gasworks bridge (history of the Gasworks here).
Grandpont Park seems to suit people so if the weather is good, we hope to have another session there in September as well as Zoom session (see the Tune of the month page for zoom link)
If you need to sit to play, please bring a stool or chair. If you need a music stand, please bring it (and I recommend clothes pegs to hold music!)
There is a nice bike route to Grandpont Nature Park from north Oxford, down the canal tow path, around the city centre through a bike route that follows Paradise St and then past City of Oxford College of Further Education, across Oxpens, and either across the field beside the Ice rink or the path along the river, until you reach the Gasworks bridge to Grandpont Nature Park (see purple path on this map).
We have also tested out Goose Green last week, which is just north of Wolvercote Village Hall. It is a mowed recreation ground with a few benches and a little tree shade.
Ray and I tested it out (see pic below) and I asked people sitting at the opposite end of the Green had they heard us and they reported that they hadn’t! There is some parking between Wolvercote Village Hall and the Plough Inn, but not a great deal so come by bike or bus if you can.
Our usual venue is the upstairs room in the Jericho Tavern at 3.30pm.
The full address of the Jericho Tavern is:
56 Walton Street
Oxfordshire, OX2 6AE
You can walk to the Jericho Tavern from the Oxford railway station (in purple on map) by going behind the Saïd Business Centre, left along Rewley Road, and then down to the towpath along the canal. When you get to the bridge across the canal, cross over and walk west towards Walton Street and you will find the Jericho Tavern (10 mins walk).
You can walk to the Jericho Tavern from the Oxford bus station (in pink on map) by taking the exit from the bus station to the north west onto Worcester Place, then walking along Walton Street until you reach the Jericho Tavern.
The Jericho Tavern is right next door to the local Phoenix Picturehouse Cinema if you need to ask for directions.
The Jericho Tavern also has a restaurant (and both inside and outside places to sit and eat) and they have a varied menu for Sunday lunch, and our very favourite brownies with vanilla ice cream.
There are some local parking spaces and pay and display parking on Walton Street but not a great deal of free parking. More Information on Parkopedia.
I recommend looking on Leckford Road (Woodstock Road end), Warnborough Road and Farndon Road which all have some parking spaces without restrictions on Sundays (and usually some free space). (see map below)
If you need to drop off an instrument (e.g. a harp) and then find parking, please do text me on 0770 9352834. We are in the pub beforehand having lunch and happy to help.
And if we need to return to the lovely Chequers pub in the centre of Oxford:
Info on Chequers Pub
The address of The Chequers Pub is: 131 High St, Oxford OX1 4DH