Colourful standard may be a flag for the city's future

8:30am Saturday 31st May 2014

By Ben Wilkinson

COULD this be the new Oxford flag?

The colourful standard, created by residents, celebrates the university, dreaming spires and the theory of evolution.

Oxford has never had a city flag, although Oxford City Council has its coat of arms – a bull crossing a river.

The banner was designed by visitors to a Modern Art Oxford workshop last Sunday, led by professional banner maker Ed Hall.

City residents who dropped in drew their inspiration from an exhibition about Oxford architecture inspired by evolution.

Mr Hall, 69, said: “In the 1850s, the O’Shea brothers from Dublin were invited to come and work on the Oxford University Museum of Natural History.

“That was right at the focal point of the debate about evolution.

“The brothers began to create carvings on the museum of monkeys but with human qualities.

“Because Oxford University was Christian and opposed to evolution at that point, it sacked the brothers.

“But they began to get other commissions around Oxford and proceeded to carve as monkeys the very people who had sacked them.”

The flag features two O’Shea monkeys, holding a banner saying “nothing is forever”.

It also shows a dreaming spire against a blue sky, and another banner reading “will evolution save us?”

Mr Hall added: “Everyone was discussing ideas and what we’ve ended up with I think is really interesting.”

The monkeys represent the animal kingdom and four vaulting gymnasts, inspired by another exhibition at MAO, represent humanity.

Gallery communications manager, Hannah Evans, said: “It looks amazing, it has pulled in things from our own exhibitions and has a beautiful blue sky.”

City councillor Mohammed Abbasi, elected Lord Mayor of Oxford this month, welcomed the idea of an Oxford flag.

He said: “I think we should have a flag, we have got a strong reputation and a proud history. We have so many things to be proud of here, I think we need to get together and discuss it.”

A blue and green Oxfordshire flag, named the St Frideswide Cross, has been proposed by the Oxfordshire Association, but not formally adopted.

The new Oxford flag will be hung at MAO from Tuesday until the exhibition closes on June 8.

Our top stories:

Community groups shocked they will be losing their base

Oxford Mail:

8:30am Tuesday 4th August 2015

COMMUNITY groups have been left stunned after discovering they are set to be turfed out of their homes under city council plans.

Woman who stole and sold more than 1,000 handbags ordered to pay back £140,000

Oxford Mail: Long TVP badge

6:16pm Tuesday 4th August 2015

A WOMAN who made hundreds of thousands of pounds stealing designer handbags and selling them online has been ordered to pay back more than £140,000.

Update: Woman injured after crash on the A44 in Yarnton

Oxford Mail: OM A44

4:56pm Tuesday 4th August 2015

A WOMAN suffered minor injuries at a crash in Yarnton earlier today, according to Thames Valley Police.

Antique jewellery stolen from Watlington house

Oxford Mail: Long TVP badge

1:59pm Tuesday 4th August 2015

AN ELDERLY lady has had a 100-year-old gold pearl brooch and 200-year-old gold pocket watch stolen from her house in Watlington.

Name a Spitfire hero and help get Oxford Squadron up in air

Oxford Mail:

9:00am Tuesday 4th August 2015

HEROES who fought in the Battle of Britain could be honoured by a flying club that wants to pay tribute to Oxfordshire Spitfire pilots.

Bank holiday misery ahead as First Great Western staff strike

Oxford Mail: FGW train new

9:00am Tuesday 4th August 2015

STAFF at First Great Western have vowed to walk out over the August bank holiday weekend, the RMT union has said.

Back

© Copyright 2001-2015 Newsquest Media Group

Oxford Mail: site_logo http://www.oxfordmail.co.uk

Click 2 Find Business Directory http://www.oxfordmail.co.uk/trade_directory/