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Thousands to throng city centre for St Giles' Fair - 8-9 September 2014

St Giles' Fair

A large turnout is once again expected in the centre of Oxford for the annual St Giles' Fair, which this year takes place on Monday 8 and Tuesday 9 September 2014.

The fair is one of the greatest and most prestigious in the country and it will be officially opened by the Lord Mayor of Oxford, Councillor Mohammed Abbasi on Bob Wilson Funfairs' “Air”, just south of Pusey Street, at 11am on Monday 8 September.

Fair-goers can look forward to all the traditional funfair rides and amusements like a coconut shy, helter skelter, a carousel, dodgems and waltzers combined with some exciting up-to-date, white-knuckle rides, like 'Air'. New to the fair this year will be a star flyer, to be located near to Martyrs Memorial.

The annual blessing service for St Giles' Fair will take place at 5.30pm on Sunday 7 September in front of St John's College.

Councillor Abbasi says: "St Giles' Fair is one of the great Oxford traditions. It has always moved with the times and I am sure that as usual it will provide a fun occasion for all the family."

The fair dates back to the early 17th century when it was a parish festival to celebrate the feast of the patron saint, St Giles. By the 18th century it had become a toy fair, while in the early 19th century it was a general children's fair. In the late part of the 1800s, it became more like the type of funfair we see today with a mixture of mechanical rides and side stalls.

Public transport

Buses travelling into and out of Oxford from the north will be diverted. Bus stops will be moved. For full details visit the Oxford Bus Company and Stagecoach Oxfordshire websites.

Road closures

Road closures in the area of St Giles' will apply from 12.01am on Sunday 7 September through to 8.30am on Wednesday 10 September. The usual diversion routes will be sign posted.

Full details can be found below.

PROHIBITION OF VEHICLES:

  • Banbury Road A4165, closed from its junction with Parks Road to its junction with Keble Road - Except east side of Banbury Road parking will be allowed for vehicles associated with St. Giles Fair exhibiting a St. Giles Fair parking permit;
  • Beaumont Street, from St. John Street to St. Giles - except south side, parking permitted for taxis from a point 5 metres from Gloucester Street for 10 metres. Pay & Display parking suspended; Disabled Persons parking suspended and relocated to Keble Road; Marked goods vehicle loading bays will also be suspended.
  • Bevington Road, closed at its junction with Woodstock Road;
  • Keble Road, closed except parking permitted north side for disabled persons vehicles, and on the south side for fairground vehicles exhibiting a permit; also Coach parking relocated from St Giles. Residents permit parking suspended;
  • St. Giles', Pay and Display parking, and Disabled Persons parking suspended;
  • Magdalen Street East and West closed;
  • Pusey Street, Disabled Persons Parking is relocated to Keble Road;
  • Woodstock Road A4144, from St. Giles to Observatory Street - Except parking permitted east side between Observatory Street and The Royal Oak Public House for fairground vehicles exhibiting a permit;
  • Little Clarendon Street closed at its junction with Woodstock Road. Access only to premises will be from Walton Street, and this road to be used as access/staging area for emergency services. The 30 min permitted parking and the marked goods vehicle loading bays will be suspended; the one-way restriction will also be suspended.
  • Parks Road, traffic emerging into Banbury Road will only be able to turn right (northwards) away from the City.
  • Broad Street, Bus and taxi services will be transferred from St Giles which will involve lowering of the No Through Road bollards. The goods vehicle loading bays and Street Traders bay on the south side will also be suspended.

The alternative City through-route for traffic is via Worcester Street, Walton Street, Kingston Road, St. Margaret's Road and vice versa.

Exemptions to the restrictions are included for emergency services and for access. Access to properties within the closed area has been advised in writing to residencies, colleges, businesses and will be supervised by marshals.

Released on Wednesday 3 September 2014

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