North Hinksey fields

North Hinksey Fields and the ‘Oxen Ford’

OPT owns three fields to the south of Willow Walk between the Seacourt and Bulstake streams, bought in 1978 from the Pirie and Van Heynigen families, to preserve the rural atmosphere of North Hinksey and with a proviso that we keep them in agricultural use.  The fields have been grazed by horses from the local riding school for many years.

The ‘oxen ford’, thought to be the origin of the name of our wonderful City, is to be found on the footpath which runs behind The Fishes.

One of the fields is home to a colony of Creeping Marshwort (Apium repens), an Endangered Species introduced here in 1996 by local conservationists using plants from nearby Port Meadow where it was in danger of being lost.

In 2016 details of the route of the proposed Oxford Flood Alleviation Scheme, which will run through these fields, were announced by the Environment Agency. If it goes ahead they will no longer be suitable for horse grazing and will be sub-divided with the channel and wide bridges introduced. We are concerned about the change in the ‘rural’ character and that the altered hydrology will harm the Creeping Marshwort.