• Could new scheme save post office branches?

    RESIDENTS could soon pay council bills and parking fines at Oxfordshire post offices in a pilot scheme designed to safeguard branches. Oxfordshire County Council and Oxford City Council are looking to work with post offices to see if they can save money

  • Trees celebrate landmark year

    Eighty trees have been planted to celebrate an environmental group’s anniversary. As the Oxfordshire branch of the Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) reached its 80th anniversary members created a copse by planting a tree for every year of its

  • Composer's gift

    Andrew Lloyd Webber is providing a scholarship at the Oxford School of Drama, Woodstock, for a student studying musical theatre. The scholarship, worth more than £6,000 for a six- month course, is aimed at supporting a gifted student who might not otherwise

  • Another post office faces uncertain future

    UNCERTAINTY hangs over the future of Cropredy’s post office after the village branch shut. The branch, in gift shop The Perfect Present in Williamscot Road, closed at the end of last month after subpostmistress Camille Jokumsen stepped down due to ill

  • Malaria vaccine

    Volunteers are needed to help test the effectiveness of new malaria vaccines. Oxford University researchers are seeking people aged 18 to 50, in good health, to take part in a study. Call 01865 857406 or email susanne.sheehy@

  • Getting better

    Improvements have been highlighted at St Joseph’s Primary School, Lawton Avenue, Carterton, following a monitoring inspection by Ofsted. Inspectors noted pupils were becoming increasingly engaged in their learning, and more actively involved.

  • Thursday, February 9: A galaxy of Stars Wars goodies

    YOU don't have to travel to a galaxy far, far away to get your hands on this gaggle of Star Wars goodies. Grab the Oxford Mail on Thursday, February 9, and in our entertainment section, The Guide, we have a competition for three lucky readers to win

  • Threat to town's 'retail heart'

    Plans for an out-of-town retail park will “threaten the retail heart of Banbury” the manager of Castle Quay fears. Paul Jackson warned that retailers would leave the town for the planned Banbury Gateway, at the current site of motorsport firm Prodrive

  • Work to start on church revamp

    The next phase of a major £5m project to revamp one of Oxford’s biggest churches is set to begin. About £300,000 has already been spent on restoration to the sanctuary of the Oxford Oratory, one of just three Roman Catholic oratories in the country.

  • 'Use housing cash to improve our area'

    Plans for the first of 2,500 homes on the Grove Airfield site have prompted concerns about how infrastructure grants will be spent. Persimmon Homes wants planning permission for 500 homes in the first phase of a development set to double the population

  • Town council wants facts

    Town councillors in Didcot are using Freedom of Information legislation to find out how much money developers have contributed towards new services for the town. They are concerned that money earmarked for community facilities could end up being wasted

  • 'Talking therapy changed my life'

    LAURA thought she had tried every type of therapy available to treat her anxiety and depression. The 32-year-old secretary, who works in Oxford, said: “I had tried so many therapies – hypnotherapy, counselling, just to try and work out what was causing

  • Local share prices (PM)

    AEA Technology 0.31 BMW 5841 Electrocomponents 234.8 Nationwide Accident Repair 64.5 Oxford Biomedica 3.35 Oxford Catalysts 47 Oxford Instruments 1034 Reed Elsevier 524.25 RM 75.4 RPS Group 222.75 Courtesy of Redmayne Bentley,

  • Homeserve workers escape the axe

    The jobs of 70 staff at utility insurance firm Homeserve in Banbury are safe, despite the company cutting 200 jobs. Bosses confirmed the redundancies will come at its head office in Walsall with workers at the office in Cherwell Business Village


    Keeble Jacqueline (Jackie) Passed away suddenly and peacefully on 4 February 2012 aged 74 years. Sister of Angela, loved and sadly missed by all her family. Funeral service to take place on Tuesday February 14, 10.45am at Oxford Crematorium. Flowers


    DALLIMORE Janet Passed away peacefully in hospital surrounded by her family on the 30th January 2012. She will be sadly missed by her husband and family. The funeral service will be held at St Lawrence Church, North Hinksey on Tuesday 14th February at


    WEST Jean No happy returns on what would have been your 86th birthday and the 1st Anniverary of your death March 2nd. Loved and missed by your Husband Alf and Daughters Sally and Irene and Families xxx


    PANCOTT Thomas In loving memory of a dear Dad February 8th also dear a brother David taken from us February 20th. God Bless Love Judith, Colin, Martin, Shirley, Lisa and Darren xxx xxx


    BRIDGE Jack William Of Chipping Norton, formerly of Chadlington, on 3rd February, in hospital aged 85. Much loved father of Graham, father-in-law of Rose and grandfather of Lisa, Darren and Terry. Funeral service at St. Nicholas’ Church, Chadlington


    COX Ena Of Yarnton passed away peacefully in the JR II on January 30th aged 80 years. A dearly loved wife of the late Ron. A much loved mum to Bill, Marilyn, Brian and Stephen. A loving nan and nanny Fox. A much loved sister, Auntie and Friend. The funeral


    GUNSTONE Margaret Isobel 12.2.25 - 3.2.12 Peacefully joined her husband Denis on 3rd February 2012. She was a devoted Mother to Elizabeth and Kathleen, Mother-in-law to Clive and proud Grandma to Rupert and Dominic, remembering Lucy always. Will be

  • My madeleine moment with crisps

    While it possesses none of the romantic appeal of Proust’s madeleine, a cheese and onion crisp — actually, a whole packet of crisps — remains for me an always reliable conduit to the past. The unforgettable flavour transports me back to the Norfolk seaside

  • An odd exchange in the style of Pinter himself

    "Is it a quarter to nine or a quarter to ten?” “A quarter to ten.” “Oh s**t!” “But we have seen a play...” “Oh yeah.” It struck me there was a vaguely Pinteresque quality about this exchange between two young women

  • The Longwall Beefeater, Oxford Business Park, Cowley

    The Longwall Beefeater was purpose built in 1995 at Oxford Business park on the site of part of the Rover works. Close to what is now its entrance stood the famous chimney which until its demolition still wore its wartime camouflage. Photographs

  • Some Like It Hotter, Oxfordshire Theatre Company, touring

    Oxfordshire Theatre Company’s latest production (in conjunction with the Watermill, Newbury) is a witty, fast-paced and moving reflection on the afterlife. Jack Lemmon, Tony Curtis and Marilyn Monroe inhabit a celestial waiting room for the newly

  • Sweet lamb is the ideal lovers' feast

    It’s apt that next week is National Nest Box week, organised to take place from February 14 to 21 by members of the British Trust for Ornithology (BTO) which aims to encourage us to hang nest boxes in our gardens. The fact that the week begins

  • The Woman in Black and The Muppets

    Less is certainly more in The Woman in Black, a chilling film version of the novel by Susan Hill, which has been re-imagined as a television movie, a radio series and a hit stage play in the 30 years since its publication. Working from a screenplay

  • Matthew Arnold's life among 'the dreaming spires'

    Isuppose Matthew Arnold, coiner of the phrase “City of Dreaming Spires”, embodies for many of us — who vaguely remember reading bits of him at school — the very essence of Oxford. But some might say that the spirit he affirms is more that of a relatively

  • Recipe for banana fritters with caramel sauce (serves 4)

    The recipes in Tina Bester’s Love Food (Pavilion, £12.99) are basic moreish dishes, many of which have been passed down through the generations. They are simple to make, yet packed with flavours that will make them memorable, particularly as Tina has

  • Oedipussy: Royal&Derngate, Northampton

    Those admirable pranksters Spymonkey virtually write their own review of their new show Oedipussy in what is posted on the warning notices we pass on the way into the Royal Theatre’s auditorium. The list of perils ahead runs: “Nudity, smoke, strobe lighting

  • You're Not Like Other Girls Chrissy: The Rotunda, Iffley

    On January 31, those lucky enough to get tickets to The Rotunda saw the first sell-out performance in a new tour of You’re Not Like the Other Girls Chrissy, a one-woman show by Caroline Horton. Based upon the life — or, more accurately, love life —

  • Preview of Oxford Trobadors, Holywell Music Room

    Anyone who saw the Oxford Trobadors at the Holywell Music Room last year will want to catch them in action again next week, when they return with another cocktail of music inspired by the medieval language Occitan, which still exists in parts of

  • Summertown Choral Society: St Andrew's Church

    It takes more than a bit of snow to deter Oxford audiences, and Summertown Choral Society must have been relieved on Saturday night to see St Andrew’s Church more or less full for their performance of Bach’s B Minor Mass, despite increasingly treacherous

  • Joan Bakewell: Oxford Playhouse

    ‘Evenings with . . .” can be desultory or pompous affairs — self-serving and often self-demeaning. Friday’s Playhouse event was never going to be like that: the guest was writer and broadcaster Joan Bakewell, and a good-sized audience enjoyed 75 minutes

  • 'Tis Pity She's a Whore: Oxford Playhouse

    The Grand Guignol climax to John Ford’s Caroline revenge tragedy ’Tis Pity She’s a Whore comes so close to ‘designer violence’ as sometimes to provoke more laughter than fear from those watching. There is no risk of that with Declan Donnellan’s

  • Girl sexually assaulted in Headington

    A 15-YEAR-OLD girl was sexually assaulted in Headington, Oxford. The girl was walking along Quarry Road at about 7.50pm on Monday, when a man began following her, police said today. He asked the girl questions before pushing her against a fence and

  • No trouble brewing at pub relaunch

    Landlady Nicola Dempsey is determined the riverside pub she has taken over in Wallingford will lose its reputation for yobs. Mum-of-three Ms Dempsey has been appointed general manager of the Boathouse, run by the Spirit Pub Company. It closed for a

  • Banking on a green bid

    BICESTER’S bid to become the site for the country’s first green bank is gathering support. Town MP Tony Baldry sent a letter backing the bid to host the bank saying the town’s eco status and strategic location meant Bicester was the perfect choice.

  • Flagship youth centre set to reopen

    A DELAYED flagship youth centre in Witney will reopen within weeks after a £750,000 revamp. Witney Young People’s Centre in Witan Way had been due to open in September but has been hit by problems with the gas main. Oxfordshire County Council now expects

  • Making great strides against the odds

    WHEN CHELSEA Dancer was five she was diagnosed with a debilitating hip condition which limited her movements. Now, following physiotherapy, the 11-year-old from Kidlington, is making great strides in the dance world. And bosses at Oxfordshire-based

  • MOTORSPORT: Pratt gets rewarded

    Stock-car driver James Pratt, from Dorchester-on-Thames, received a special award at the end of a successful campaign following a long time out of the sport At the annual meeting of the Heritage Stock-Car Drivers Association, Pratt was presented with

  • MOTORSPORT: Boullier backing Kimi for success

    Lotus team principal Eric Boullier has been left in no doubt as to Kimi Raikkonen’s motivation following his return to Formula 1 with the Enstone-based team. Raikkonen’s comeback after two years away from the sport, during which time he predominantly

  • SCHOOLS' FOOTBALL: Chrediy's extra special

    Ahmed Chrediy grabbed an extra-time winner for Cherwell (Oxford) in a 2-1 victory at Brentwood County High School in the ESFA Under 16 Schools’ Cup seventh round. Marcus Gray had opened the scoring for Cherwell in the first half of the last-16 tie only

  • SCHOOLS' FOOTBALL: Vale at Swansea

    Vale of White Horse are away to Swansea in the ESFA Under 15 Trophy quarter-finals after the Welsh side won 2-1 at home to Poole & East Dorset. The tie is to take place at Swansea RFC’s St Helens ground on Tuesday, February 21 (6pm). The winners will

  • MOTORSPORT: Sir Frank ready to battle it out

    Sir Frank Williams is confident his team are “ready and strong for the fight” as their latest challenger for the new Formula 1 season was unveiled. The Grove-based Williams Formula 1 outfit did nothing more than push the FW34 out of the garage at the

  • SCHOOLS' FOOTBALL: Marlborough are cup kings

    Captain Ryan Heap led by example with a double as Marlborough School (Woodstock) captured the Oxfordshire Under 16 Cup with a 3-0 win over Henry Box (Witney) in the final at Roman Way, Oxford. After controlling the opening exchanges, Marlborough opened

  • FOOTBALL: Oxford United's derby leads to call-offs

    Oxford City FA have called off their fixtures on Saturday, March 3, to allow players to attend the Oxford United v Swindon Town derby game at the Kassam Stadium. Tickets for the npower League Two clash were snapped up quickly by fans and a sell-out crowd

  • MOTORSPORT: Rushforth set for Clio Cup

    Wantage racer, Alastair Rushforth is close to securing the required funds to compete in this season’s Air Asia Renault Clio Cup. The cup which forms part of the TOCA package supporting the British Touring Car Championship (BTCC), is a breeding

  • Man cleared of flashing

    OXFORD: A pensioner “who looked liked Edvard Munch’s The Scream” has been cleared of a sex act at an Oxford bus stop. Melvyn Mansell was alleged to have exposed himself last July in Morrell Avenue near South Park. But the 67-year-old defendant, of Bulan

  • FOOTBALL: Steele staying at Nantwich

    Rumours that former Oxford City striker Lee Steele could be on his way to Evo-Stik Southern League Premier Division rivals Brackley from Nantwich have been denied by the club. Steele, 38, signed on non-contract terms for Jimmy Quinn’s side after

  • Hospital study sheds light on 'super-bug'

    A STUDY by the John Radcliffe Hospital suggests hospitals may be adopting the wrong strategy for tackling a notorious bug. Research by a team at the JR showed contact between patients only accounted for a minority of infections by the bacterium clostridium

  • COMMENT: Westgate is not the place for housing

    AFFORDABLE housing has almost taken on myth-like status in this city. But that shouldn’t mean that any area of redevelopment becomes immediately earmarked for residential dwellings. That is what’s being suggested by Oxford’s Green Party

  • Leave red kites alone

    THE article titled ‘Red kites are turning pests’ (Oxford Mail, February 2) is a misrepresentation of the facts behind these magnificent birds’ rise in numbers. Firstly, red kites are not predatory towards other living animals and birds, although they

  • RACING: Dvinsky set for double century

    Dvinsky takes centre stage today when he competes for the 200th time in a race named in his honour at Kempton. It is believed no horse has made as many starts in Britain before, and the 11-year-old will bring down the curtain on the day’s only meeting

  • Respects paid to Nepalese soldier

    COLLEAGUES of a Gurkha whose body was brought back to Britain yesterday have paid tribute to their friend and to the support shown by the people of Oxfordshire. Lance Corporal Gajbahadur Gurung, of the Royal Gurkha Rifles, was shot and killed

  • Renewable energy fails

    We are in the middle of our coldest spell this winter, with temperatures regularly plunging below zero during a period which has extended for several weeks. This is the time of year when we reach peak electricity demand, but what has happened to our

  • Doormen ought to be aware of Medic-Alert

    I WAS shocked by the appalling treatment of diabetic James Cowley over his insulin and his Medic-Alert bracelet (Friday’s Oxford Mail). As a wearer of an emblem myself, I would like to know why, if the door staff were so concerned, did they not telephone

  • Parking zone has flaws

    THANK you for your article about residents’ parking in Oxford (Oxford Mail, January 30). Controlled Parking Zones (CPZs) can be very helpful in stopping commuter parking. But in residential areas like Iffley Fields, that I represent on the county council

  • COMMENT: A small bargain

    ABINGDON...In miniature...In Australia... With a price tag of half a million pounds, if that includes an Antipodean climate, it’s cheap at twice the price.

  • International hypocrisy

    WE have become accustomed to hypocritical politicians but recent statements prompted by the deplorable events in Syria plumb the deepest depths of hypocrisy. Referring to the decision by Russia and China to veto the Arab League plan, Foreign Secretary

  • Down Under twin’s a model community

    IT IS about 10,000 miles away from its Oxfordshire namesake and its residents are only a few inches tall. But the Abingdon in Australia, despite its seaside location and hot climate, could be wiped off the map. The Abingdon Miniature

  • Inquest told of freak drilling death

    A MAN died after stabbing himself in the heart with an electric drill as he helped friends fit out the inside of a fast food kiosk in Gloucester Green in Oxford. Araz Ibrahem Saleh, 23, of Pipit Close, Greater Leys, Oxford, was fatally injured in the

  • £1m home belongs to us, say tenants

    THE OWNERSHIP of a £1m house is being fought over by its longstanding tenants and a man who says he bought it from a dead Nigerian chief’s relative. Abbey Folami, 46, says he is the rightful owner of 17 Warnborough Road in North Oxford, after

  • Mini to take on more apprentices

    THE Cowley Mini plant is boosting its apprentice intake by more than 50 per cent this year. Thirty-five places are on offer for apprenticeships lasting between three and four years covering skills from human resources to electrical maintenance and engineering

  • Call to reveal housing sites

    THE Oxfordshire branch of the Campaign to Protect Rural England has submitted a Freedom of Information request to find out which sites developers have targeted for housing. Vale of White Horse District Council announced in October it wants to relax planning

  • MOTOR CYCLING: Bradley gets back in the swing with first test

    The long wait is over for Bradley Smith, who starts his 2012 Moto2 season with the first official practice session of the season in Spain on Wednesday. The Oxford rider takes part in a three-day session with his Tech 3 team at Valencia, looking to build

  • Crash victim not identified

    A MAN in his 80s who died when his car was involved in a collision with a bus in Abingdon had still not been formally named yesterday. The man, who is believed to be from the area, was in his Ford Fusion when it and an Oxford Bus Company X3 bus collided

  • Turbine plan rejected

    N OXON: An appeal has been lodged after controversial plans that could lead to eight wind turbines being put up were rejected by planners. Cherwell District Council rejected the plan for a 60-metre high wind monitoring mast north of Hanwell, near Banbury

  • Pervert priest convicted of sexual abuse

    BANBURY: A Roman Catholic priest who served in Oxfordshire, has been convicted of sexually abusing eight boys. Alexander Bede Walsh, a former priest at St John The Evangelist Church, in Banbury, was found guilty of 21 sex offences by jurors

  • Fears for future of our native ladybird

    FOREIGN ladybirds are pushing out their British counterparts, a survey led by an Oxfordshire scientist has discovered. The harlequin ladybird came to these shores in 2004 and its colonisation – spreading 60 miles each year – has led to a rapid

  • Barman dies after hitting speed limit sign

    A BARTENDER from France died after crashing his car near Wallingford following a night out drinking with friends at a beer festival. Archibald Ballingall, 21, died after his French-registered Peugeot 206 ended up in the brook in Brook Street, Benson,

  • College picks up teaching ‘Oscar’

    AN Oxford college which prides itself on giving people a second chance has been awarded an education ‘Oscar’ for its outreach work. Ruskin College principal Audrey Mullender will today be presented with the Association of Colleges Beacon Award for Widening

  • Oxford engraver etches Jubilee sets

    From his small workshop in Oxford, a glass engraver to the Queen has helped to create mementos for the Diamond Jubilee worth £6m. Philip Lawson Johnston, who has held a Royal Warrant since 2009, has etched images of wildlife from the royal estates of