Tag Archives: Oxfordshire

St. Mary’s Church, Banbury

Friday 16th July 2021, 11.40am (day 3,613)

St Mary's Church, Banbury, 16/7/21

The ‘Strategy Forum’ came and went — nice to meet people again, not so nice to be presented with visions of the future ruled by metrics and process management, with scholarship now an apparent inconvenience, allowed for grudgingly if at all. I couldn’t make it even to the end of the last half-day so escaped about 11am and shortly afterwards was in Banbury, which can become the 349th different location to feature on the blog. St. Mary’s Church is one of those buildings that it’s very difficult to get a full impression of on a single photo, but here’s my best attempt.

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Education Strategy Forum, Heythrop Park

Thursday 15th July 2021, 4.40pm (day 3,612)

Heythrop Park, 15/7/21

The house of Heythrop Park is 300 years old, and built for the first Duke of Shrewsbury (not that we are very near Shrewsbury here). 300 years ago, they clearly believed in symmetry. And I’m quite fond of the principle myself, if truth be told; enough to get annoyed at not only those people who left the spare picnic table out, but who couldn’t co-ordinate the curtains on each side of the facade. The guy taking a break from the conference? Well, he’s just unplanned humanity. Him, I excuse.

I’ve been here before by the way: first visting (for the same conference, or rather ‘strategy forum’) in February 2018.

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By the croquet lawns

Wednesday 7th February 2018, 10.45am (day 2,358)

Heythrop walker, 7/2/18

Heythrop Park was built three hundred years ago, more or less. In its heyday doubtless it was a sumptuous retreat from the pressures of the outside world, where paid labour served the privileged few, who were repaid inĀ  enhanced status and social cachet.

It is of course much the same now. But we call these gatherings ‘conferences’ and we all mingle to talk ‘best practice’ and ‘strategy’ rather than shoot pheasants. Ah, what the hell, it’s actually been a pretty interesting day and a half. Nice building too (the original manor house anyway: perhaps not the modern hotel extension).

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Morning frost, Heythrop Park

Tuesday 6th February 2018, 8.05am (day 2,357)

Heythrop Park, 6/2/18

Somewhat shamefully this is the earliest picture in a given day since late November. But it’s only now that the light is starting to return to the sky at a civilised hour in the morning. I said there would be some Oxfordshire countryside today, so here it is — the grounds of Heythrop Park, once the home of the Earl of Shrewsbury, then a Jesuit college, now a hotel of the sort where conferences are held, like the one I am attending.

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