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The hidden history of Oxford's favourite street is an open, DIY community history project.

What is

It's like a Wikipedia for the Cowley Road.

Every public or commercial building from the Plain to Magdalen Road has its own page. We are building an open archive of facts and photos celebrating Cowley Road's social and architectural life, with all content freely available for community use.

All content is created by and for the local community. All contributions are released under an open license, so all content on the site is genuinely available for free community use. See the Copyright page for more details.

The project was officially launched during Cowley Road Carnival 2017, followed by a series of public workshops. Further public events in October & November 2019 will gather more material from local people and digitize it for the archive.

How do I get involved?

  • Add your photos and memories! — click the "request account" button at the top right of the page. Then read the how-to page for instructions.
  • Don't have anything to add, but want to improve the archive? Check the list of Jobs which need doing.
  • Sign up to our newsletter using the box at the bottom right to get updates about the project, and to hear about upcoming events.

Who made it?

This is a project from artist Nor and programmer Charlie Harvey.

It uses software from MediaWiki, and features some images from other open archives such as Geograph. It features a large contribution from local author and photographer Martin Stott who has generously contributed his own archival photographs. We are working in partnership with Cowley Road Carnival and have benefited from the advice and support of historian Liz Woolley.

The project has been supported financially by Lankelly Chase and the Greening Lambourn Trust, which exists to promote interest in the history and architectural heritage of Oxford by supporting publications and other media which create access to them. has been featured a few times in the media.

Previous Public Events in 2019

  • Thurs 17 October, 6-8pm: FREE. Drop in any time to share your photos and memories. At Open House, Little Clarendon St.
  • Sat 19 October, 2-4pm: FREE. Drop in any time to share your photos and memories. At [ Fusion Arts], Cowley Rd.
  • Tues 12 November, 2-4pm: FREE. Photo safari workshop: come out and take photos on Cowley Road.At [ Fusion Arts], Cowley Rd.
  • Tues 19 November, 2-4pm: Cowley Graphic artists remix workshop. Come and create new works from images in the archive. At [ Fusion Arts], Cowley Rd.

click here for my list of favourite food shops