Riot at the Fair

Click here to watch video of the Riot at the Fair

The Riot at the Fair, held on September 3rd, 2018 in Bonn Square, Oxford, celebrated Otmoor and Oxfordshire and brought the projected road and house-building to the attention of the crowds attending the city's traditional St. Giles Fair being held during the first week of September.  It featured an authentic traditional Oxfordshire Waggon of the type used to transport the Rioters through the St. Giles Fair of 1830 on their way to Oxford Gaol.  There were rioters, soldiers, live music and Morris Dancers, information about the Expressway plans and its effects, other displays, and an opportunity to sign protest petitions.

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A legend emerged that the people of Otmoor had webbed feet (presumably because it would make it easier for them to walk in the flooded marshes).  The Rev EHW Crusha wrote to a Miss Eltenton that he was furious about this: "It is commonly said that 'Otmoor goslings (or rather, Otmoor GOLLINS) have webbed feet.' It is as old as the memories of surviving old people. I have myself no doubt that it originated as a kind of insult which foreigners' used towards Otmoor men."

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Walk the Moor

A Celebration of Otmoor and its Seven Towns

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Click here to watch video of our Walk the Moor event.

Following in the footsteps of the famous anti-enclosure rioters, residents of Otmoor's seven towns, and other lovers of the Oxfordshire countryside, walked the boundaries of this unique rural jewel on Sunday, July 8th.  Embracing the spirit of the Otmoor Rioters of 1830, they reaffirmed everyone’s right to enjoy the landscapes, wildlife, and villages of one of the last remaining wetlands of southern England in the face of the new threat to its integrity posed by recently announced plans for an Oxford to Cambridge Expressway.  This peaceful protest was organised to raise awareness around the need to protect the green spaces of Oxfordshire.  The bells of the churches surrounding Otmoor were rung throughout the day lending their ancient voices in celebration and support for what should remain our green and pleasant land.  

The walk celebrated all the endangered countryside along each of the three proposed corridors.


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