Back
Next

Oxford Inscriptions: South Park


South Park

 

THIS PARK WAS
ACQUIRED BY THE
OXFORD
PRESERVATION
TRUST THROUGH
THE LIBERALITY
OF THE
PILGRIM TRUST
AND DAVID
AND JOANNA
RANDALL-MacIVER

1932

 

The lettering on this stone, which stands outside the railings of South Park in St Clements, is by Eric Gill.

It is a Grade II listed structure
(List Entry No. 1445102)

 

The “South Park” of Headington Hill Hall (lying on the opposite side of Headington Hill to the Hall and linked by a bridge) was under threat in the 1920s, when the city council hoped to use it for housing. But the Morrell Trustees would only release a strip of land to the south, and the council house estate built along the edge of the park was appropriately named Morrell Avenue.

On 14 December 1932 the Morrell Trustees sold the remaining 54 acres of South Park to the Oxfordshire Preservation Trust for £23,155, with the stipulation that no building should ever be erected on it.

On 28 May 1951 the Oxford Preservation Trust handed the land was handed over to the City of Oxford to be preserved as an open space for the benefit of the public.

 

Oxford Preservation Trust

 

The Pilgrim Trust

 

The Randall-MacIvers

David Randall-MacIver (1873–1945), a shipowner's son, was educated at Radley College and The Queen's College, Oxford. He became an archaeologist and anthropologist, and was Laycock student of Egyptology at Worcester College, Oxford from 1900 to 1906. He settled in Rome after the First World War. See his entries in Wikipedia and the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography.

He married his first wife Joanna Davidge (the daughter of W. H. Davidge of New York) in 1911. She died in 1931, and they are both buried in Rome.

The cartoon below from Punch of 8 August 1928 relates to the founding of the Oxford Preservation Trust:

Oxford Preservation Trust cartoon

Stephanie Jenkins, 2013