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Lifestyle, Travel, In the community

New Map Highlights Recommended Walking Routes in Oxford

Turl Street

Image: by stevecadman on Flickr

A new free walking map of Oxford has been launched in time for the summer holidays. It shows pleasant walking routes through the city, and just beyond, to help people plan journeys and discover new places in Oxford. The Oxford Online Walking Map can be found at:

Playgrounds, benches, and public toilets are all marked. It was created by volunteers using Google Maps and was inspired by the success of its recently launched sister, the “Oxford Online Cycling Map” which has already been viewed more than 40,000 times.

The map shows pleasant routes to walk, both on and off road, connecting up key destinations. It has been crowd-sourced by locals. The map’s creators are keen to add another layer showing places of local interest, and would love to be contacted by local groups who can contribute.

The map shows the locations of Oxford’s many benches for breaking a journey or enjoying a view, and playgrounds are marked across the city, whether as destinations or places to pause when walking with children. People can suggest additions or changes via

Co-ordinated by the Oxford Pedestrians Association (OxPA) and the Coalition for Healthy Streets and Active Travel (CoHSAT), the map aims to make things easier for everyone who likes walking around Oxford, and to help children get out and about and explore during the school holidays.

Cllr Emily Kerr, who helped design the map, said: “The map was inspired by a conversation I had with my friend Dave. Dave has walked and mapped every single route in Oxford, as a lockdown project and to help him get fit. We talked to other walkers and realised that whilst there were lots of maps recommending specific walks, but thought it would be useful to put all the information together so people who commute, or those who walk for recreation and fitness, could experiment with new routes.

“A number of people have already contributed and we’ve launched the map in time for the school holidays, but we’re also keen to add detail about local places so would love to hear from local history groups.”

The Oxford Online Walking Map is hosted on Google Maps and the Oxford Pedestrians Association website at

Campaigners are also calling for road safety improvements to enable walking and wheeling by people of all ages, including more school streets, a ban on pavement parking, pedestrian-priority crossings, and 20 mph speed limits on all roads in Oxford.

Oxfordshire is a great place to walk. Oxford has even more people who walk to work (21.6%) than who cycle (17.2%) or who take the bus (14.5%), according to the 2021 census. (1) Earlier this month, Oxford was voted the best city to explore on foot in the UK. (2).

The sister map, Oxford Online Cycling Map, was launched in June 2023, and has been opened more than 40,000 times. It can be found at:


New build houses
Thu 18 Jul 2024

Congratulations! Buying a new home is such an exciting moment. Whether it is your very first home or you are upgrading your current property for something a bit nicer, there is no feeling like it. New build homes are such a great investment. Not only are they brand new for your family but you can feel confident that they have been designed with the future in mind. Many properties come with eco-friendly features which are great for safeguarding your family. Financing a new home can be a bit of a minefield. Let’s take a look at how you could buy your new home as well as some things to look out for along the way. Mortgage Mortgages are the most common financing option when buying a home. Buyers of new builds can benefit from mortgages designed for the intricacies of the new build process. Lenders may be a lot more critical when looking at your application as there is less security for them with a new build. As construction timelines can be subject to delays and issues, be sure to keep in touch with your lender and see if you can extend your mortgage in principal agreement. You may be able to get some help with buying a new build home. If you are a first-time buyer, look into whether you are eligible for a discount under the First Homes Scheme. Incentives from builders It is in the best interest of building developers to sell their new homes, so some may offer you incentives. You may be offered cash towards your deposit which will be transferred to your solicitor on completion. If you do take advantage of this, remember to inform your mortgage lender. For people who have already purchased a home, developers may be able to help you sell your old house. A developer-assisted sale is one where they will aid you with independent valuations, appropriate deals or the actual sale. This is often free, and they may pay for your estate agency fees. Hidden costs Buying a house can come with hidden costs such as stamp duty and moving costs. Delays in the construction of your new build can often be costly too. When thinking about your moving budget, it is wise to incorporate a buffer zone for additional expenses. Advice The home-buying process is not a straightforward one, so seeking help from professionals is prudent. A lot of the process includes legal intricacies which will be beyond your capabilities. Mortgage brokers, for example, will be invaluable when it comes to getting you a mortgage in principle that works for your situation. Not only will you be able to get the best deal and save money, but a broker will save you so much time. Instructing a firm of solicitors will also be worth the expense. They can do land searches, deed transfers and keep everything above board for you going forward.

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