Celebrating a centenary of car making in Oxford

Date Posted: 29/03/2013

100 years of car manufacturing will be commemorated by Oxfordshire this year; with rallies, classic car processions and exhibitions amongst the events that teachers can arrange to visit.

On 28th March 1913 the first car rolled out of the old Military Academy on Hollow Way, signalling a growth in Oxford's manufacturing industry and the personal fortune of William Morris.

The driving force behind the industry, Morris rose from humble beginnings to become one of the UK’s greatest philanthropists. The events will commemorate this oft-forgotten aspect of Oxford and Oxfordshire's history.

Classic cars, rallies and processions

The Wallingford Vehicle Rally on 12th May will see a rally and parade of vehicles, while on 30th May there's the opportunity for teachers to take pupils to a special centenary exhibition at MINI Plant Oxford.

The Morris Minor Owners' Club is hosting a major international centenary event at Cornbury Park, Oxfordshire, on 15th and 16th June; while on a smaller scale, the Cowley Classic Car Show on 18th August at Court Place Farm will showcase classic cars and provide children's entertainment. School groups can join the Cowley Road Carnival procession on 7th July.

Oxford Open Doors on 14th and 15th September sees a range of places connected with Morris open to view, as well as displays of vintage buses and cars.

As well as the major events there are many opportunities for local residents to recall and record their memories of Oxford's car making years. The Museum of Oxford is holding a series of six Reminiscence Events - the opportunity to share memories, listen to fascinating stories and visit venues related to Morris Motors.

School groups can explore life living and working in the area around the car plant at the museum, as part of the 'From Bike to BMW' handling workshop.

For further school travel information visit www.visitoxfordandoxfordshire.com.

School Travel Organiser's Guide