MORE than 1,000 Oxford people took a tour of their own city thanks to free city sightseeing bus tours.

Local sightseers embraced the opportunity to be a tourist on their own doorsteps following the offer from the City Sightseeing open-top bus operator.

The offer was the result of a partnership between the Oxford Mail, Oxford Bus Company, and Oxford City Council, as part of our #RediscoverOxford campaign. The initiative was designed to encourage people to visit the city centre to help kickstart the economy as part of its recovery from the coroanvirus lockdown.

Readers who cut out a free voucher from the Oxford Mail or completed the Oxford - My Treasure Island art project (see Page 3), enjoyed the one-hour open top bus tour of many of our most famous landmarks.

The City Sightseeing tour, operated by Oxford Bus Company, takes in Oxford Castle, Christ Church, Magdalen Bridge, the Sheldonian Theatre, and other sites.

Phil Southall, Oxford Bus Company Managing Director, said: “We’re proud to take part in the important Rediscover Oxford campaign. It has been great to have been able to give something back to the local community which has been through such a tough time.

“The tourism and leisure industries are vital parts of Oxfordshire’s economy and it is important that key stakeholders continue to work together for the overall good of the city. We received some fantastic feedback from those who enjoyed the tour and it’s nice to have shown so many people another side of their city.”

Oxford city councillor Mary Clarkson said: “We’re hugely thankful to the Oxford Bus Company and the Oxford Mail for providing this free offer and giving Oxford residents the opportunity to be a tourist in their own city. There is so much for Oxford residents to see and do in their city centre – especially now that the museums are reopening. Sitting upstairs on a double-decker bus and receiving a guided tour is a great way to start that experience.”