Walton Street, Oxford

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Looking north along Walton Street with the Oxford University Press on the left hand side.
The front of the 1830 Oxford University Press building on Walton Street.
New Radcliffe House in the Radcliffe Observatory Quarter off Walton Street, completed in 2012[1] and housing the Jericho Health Centre, with the tower of the Radcliffe Observatory in the background.

Walton Street is on the eastern edge of the Jericho district of central Oxford, England.[2]


The street runs north from the western end of Beaumont Street and northern end of Worcester Street by the main entrance of Worcester College. Somerville College, one of the former women only colleges, also backs onto the street. The Oxford University Press (OUP) and Ruskin College are on the west side of the street, the former Church of England parish church of Saint Paul on the east side is almost opposite the OUP and St Sepulchre's Cemetery is off the street to the west.

The Oxford University Press is a neoclassical building erected 1826-30.[3] The central part was designed by Daniel Robertson and the north and west wings by Edward Blore.[3] Modern extensions were added in 1960–61 and early in the 1970s.[3]

The Freud café-bar stands opposite the Oxford University Press, and at the head of Great Clarendon Street. The bar, which was opened in 1988, is housed in a grand neoclassical building with an Ionic portico.[4] This building was constructed to house the Church of St Paul, and was the first Anglican Church to be constructed in England after the Reformation.[citation needed] The new church and parish was created to serve the growing community of Jericho. The building was designed by the architect H. J. Underwood and built in 1836.[4] The architect E. G. Bruton added the apse in 1853 and F. C. Eden remodelled the interior in 1908.[4] In the 20th century St Paul's became a redundant church and, after deconsecration, became a theatre and arts centre. In 1988 the building was acquired by Secession Ltd. to prevent its demolition and opened as Freud café-bar.[5]

The Jericho Tavern is a public house and music venue at 56 Walton Street. In the late 1980s and early 1990s it was an important part of the music scene in Oxford, spawning the groups Ride, Radiohead[6] and Supergrass.[7]

The central part of Walton Street has changed significantly as more areas are developed by the University of Oxford. The former Radcliffe Infirmary site on the east side will become the Radcliffe Observatory Quarter, a large campus for humanities research and administration. The long wall separating the Infirmary from the street has been punctuated by a new pedestrian route to Woodstock Road and a health centre. Exeter College will take over the Ruskin site opposite.

Little Clarendon Street, a shopping street, links Walton Street with Saint Giles. There are numerous restaurants on Walton Street, often used by Oxford University students because of its central position, such as Branca, Loch Fyne, The Jericho Cafe, Arzoo, Posh Fish, Brasserie Blanc (associated with the chef Raymond Blanc)[8] and The Standard Tandoori. Oxford's main independent art house cinema, the Phoenix Picturehouse, is on the west side of the street.[9] A number of cocktail bars and pubs can be found on Walton Street.

Other shops include the speciality florist Daisies[10] and Branca Delicatessen.

Northwards the street continues as Kingston Road through Walton Manor, at a junction with Walton Well Road to the northwest towards Port Meadow and St Bernard's Road to the east, linking with Woodstock Road. Near the northern end of Walton Street, Observatory Street also links Woodstock Road to the east.



Sources and further reading[edit]

Coordinates: 51°45′31″N 1°15′51″W / 51.75861°N 1.26417°W / 51.75861; -1.26417