St Francis of Assisi Church - Saturday 14 September - 10am to 5pm
Church opened in 1931 to serve the growing population in this area of Oxford, which was some distance from the other church in the Parish - St James, Beauchamp Lane. The site was given to the Parish of Cowley in 1929 by Lord Nuffield who laid the foundation stone. The architect was Lawrence Dale. The original plan included plans for a possible church, hall and priest's hall, but as it was clear that the full plan could not be implemented for many years, it was agreed to go ahead with a Church Hall, convertable to a church at weekends with a screened sanctuary which could be used for weekday services and for prayers and meditation. The full plan was never implemented but the plans are available at the Church.
The unique features of the church are the painted beams depicting scenes from the life of St Francis together with the elaborate decoration of one of them to represent the 'Hymn of Creation', painted by Mr L Davenport, an instructor at the Oxford School of Arts and Crafts, and a very interesting hanging cross, designed by A Hawkesley, DesRCC, symbolising the fragmentation of the world drawn together in the Cross of Christ.
An interesting Willaim Morris trail is available showing his various links between St James Church to St Francis Church (both parts of the Parish of Cowley).