As 2023 comes to a close, we are looking back on some of the biggest news stories which have taken place this year.

Here, we are looking at what happened in the third quarter of the year between July and September in the next part of this four-part review. 


On July 4, a 54-year-old cyclist was killed in a tragic crash on Oxford Road near Wallingford.

The man died of his injuries at the scene after he collided with a silver Vauxhall Astra.

Thames Valley Police arrested a 45-year-old man from Berinsfield on suspicion of causing death by careless driving and driving while unfit through drink or drugs.

Oxford Mail: A police car on the A4074 in Shillingford

On July 6, Network Rail works on Botley Road on July 6 came to an abrupt halt after the discovery of an inverted brick arch, thought to be part of the original Victorian drainage system.

This caused the rail authority to miss its October deadline of reopening and is due to remain closed until March 2024 as they face "unique challenges" after the discovery.

Oxford Mail: Botley Road works

A honey factory worker was convicted on July 25 of murdering his wife in Wallingford just days after their fifth wedding anniversary.

Mihai Hurmuz-Irimia, who stabbed his wife Katie more than 170 times, kept his eyes fixed on the ground as he was found guilty of murdering his wife in their flat in the early hours of August 30 last year.

He will serve a minimum of 21 years before he is eligible for release.

Oxford Mail: Composite image showing Mihai Hurmuz-Irimia and, right and inset, police outside the Wallingford

Professional footballer Garath McCleary backed a campaign by the Oxford Mail calling on the city council to ensure parks are maintained to get youths off the streets and into sport.

Wycombe Wanderers player McCleary, who was brought up in Blackbird Leys, said he didn’t want the area to be “forgotten”.

While visiting the council-owned Blackbird Leys Park with his mum, he noticed the park he grew up playing in had been left uncut with grass up to his shins.

Local football clubs who play on the park, off Cuddesdon Way, had cancelled training sessions in the summer due to the long grass.

Oxford Mail:

Also in June, plans to convert the Odeon cinema on George Street into a block of hotel apartments were given the go-ahead by Oxford City Council.

The £37million proposal includes demolishing the building and creating a new multi-storey development.

The cinema remains open with a lease that runs out in September.

Oxford Mail:

A Just Stop Oil protester from Oxford was carried from the cricket field at Lord's during the Ashes by England wicketkeeper Jonny Bairstow on June 28.

Daniel Knorr, 21, a biochemistry student a the University of Oxford, was in front of Westminster Magistrates’ Court at the end of the month alongside two others.

Knorr was subsequently convicted of aggravated trespass at City of London Magistrates' Court in late-September. 

Oxford Mail: England’s Johnny Bairstow carrying a Just Stop Oil protester off the pitch during day one of the second Ashes test match at Lord’s (Mike Egerton/PA)


A pilot was killed in a Spitfire crash after previously admitting that flying the plane “can be a challenge".

Trevor Bailey, aged 68, was the only occupant of the replica Spitfire when it crashed into a field near the A44 in Enstone at around 3pm on August 22.

Oxford Mail: Pictures from the scene

Mr Bailey from Cheltenham was one of the first onboard when enthusiasts launched a mission in 2018 to build the first modern Spitfires in Europe and get them flying over the Oxfordshire countryside again.

He was a retired finance manager who was born in 1955 in Woking, Surrey.

Oxford Mail:

Earlier in the month family-run Heyfordian Travel, which is based in Bicester announced the closure of the coach company on August 2 after 76 years due to it being “impossible to continue”.

And on August 9, police responded to reports of a lorry driver who was held at gunpoint while thieves stole pallets from the back of his truck at the M40 Welcome Break Oxford services.

A 27-year-old man was taken to hospital in the early hours of August 27, with knife wounds to his arm and back.

Police officers had been flagged down at the junction of St Aldates and Pembroke Street at around 4am opposite Oxford’s Christ Church College.


A man was arrested on suspicion of attempted murder as detectives probed reports of a double stabbing in Oxford on September 2.

27-year-old Thomas Jackson from Oxford was detained after police received reports of the incident in Barns Road in Cowley.

Oxford Mail:

He has since been charged with threatening behaviour with a knife and other matters.

Two men, one in his teens and the other in his 20s, were taken to hospital.

Oxford Mail: Police have closed off Barns Road, Cowley, and surrounding alleyways as they investigate what so

A teenager was jailed on September 8 for stabbing a 25-year-old electrician to death in Jericho over a £100 debt owed for a pair of trainers has been jailed for life.

Greg ‘Gino’ Muinami, now 19 but 18 when he murdered Alex Innes in Walton Street last November, will be in his 40s before he is eligible for release on parole.

Oxford Mail: Greg Muinami Picture: Thames Valley Police

Born in 1996, Kidlington man Alex Innes was 25 years old and almost 26 when he was stabbed once through the heart.

READ MORE: Full story of Oxford murder that saw man jailed for life

He was attacked after seeing Muinami at the Love Jericho cocktail bar in Walton Street.

Oxford Mail:

On September 11, BMW revealed plans to pump £600 million into Mini factories in Oxford and Swindon, with ambitions to transform the plant in Cowley to all-electric production by 2030.

From next year, the plant will start producing the next generation Mini three-door and Mini five-door with combustion engines, as well as the new Mini Convertible.

Oxford Mail: Aerial view of the Oxford MINI plant

On September 20, Oxfordshire County Council agreed to lease a piece of land in Kidlington to Oxford United for its new stadium.

At a cabinet meeting, councillors voted to lease The Triangle south of Kidlington Roundabout, to the club.

Although a huge step forward for the U’s, the club still requires planning approval from Cherwell District Council as the local planning authority.

Oxford Mail: Oxford United have published new images of what the club’s proposed stadium at The Triangle could

On the same day, a body was found following a fire at a block of flats in Oxford.

A police cordon was in place at Donnington Bridge Road after fire crews were called to the incident at about 5.20am.

After an investigation, Thames Valley Police said the death was being treated as unexplained.

An inquest was then opened into the death of Jacqueline Keating at Oxford Coroner's Court in October after her body was found in the flat. 

Oxford Mail:

Also in July, The University of Oxford was knocked off the top of The Times and The Sunday Times Good University Guide for 2024.

It ranked second, with the University of St Andrews displacing Oxford and Cambridge off the top spot for the second time in the guide’s 30-year history. 

Last year was the first time in 12 years that Oxford returned to the top although it has always been in the top three.

Despite being moved from the top stop nationally, Oxford did rank first in the South East category.