ONE of Oxford's biggest and most popular visitor attractions closed its doors in 2007 after nearly 20 years.

The Oxford Story on Broad Street had attracted two million visitors over two decades.

However in October that year the owners said it needed renovations costing an estimated £4m, and decided against it.

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The Oxford Story was like a slow-motion indoor rollercoaster that told the 900-year history of Oxford University.

Visitors climbed into a Victorian school desk and were carried on an undulating track through a series of rooms while a recorded narrator told the tale.

Oxford Mail:

Centre manager Liz Feeney told the Oxford Mail in 2007: "The Oxford Story has had a cracking innings and been a much-loved attraction for thousands of local residents and visitors to the city over the years."

Six full-time staff and nine part-timers lost their jobs with the closure.

The attraction was owned and operated by Continuum, formerly known as Heritage, which also operated Oxford Castle Unlocked.

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Managers said it would have taken about £4m to renovate The Oxford Story and instead decided to plough that money into the castle attraction which had opened 18 months before.

The lease for the building was given to Jesus College, which said at the time it planned to convert the space into student accommodation and conference facilities.

The ground floor space was home to Cath Kidston for years afterwards, and is now a Mountain Warehouse.