Oxford History: City Wall


South Wall: Christ Church, with Bastions 20 & 21

The next part of the wall is part of the South Wall in Christ Church Meadow, separating it from Corpus Christi College, and then it disappears into a private area of Christ Church, which was built on each side of the wall.

Wall to east of Bastion 20

The sharp bend in Deadman’s Walk in Christ Church Meadow shown below marks the point where the eastern wall of the town met the southern wall. The last section of the east wall is no more, but the south wall gets off to a good start, running westwards and marking the boundary of Corpus Christi College. (Deadman's Walk is so named because it was the route just outside the medieval town taken by Jewish funeral processions from St Aldate’s to their burial ground in what in 1621 became the Physic or Botanic Garden.) This part of the wall is Grade I listed (List Entry No. 1046615).

Bend at Christ Church

Bastion 20

This is at the end of the above wall, and is Grade I listed (List Entry No. 1046578).

Bastion 20

Wall to west of Bastion 20

This is Grade I listed (List Entry No. 1369731)

West of Bastion 20

The section of the South Wall that passes through Christ Church

The next section of the south wall once had an unnamed gate at this point, and then did a short detour to the south to include St Frideswide’s Priory. The wall would then have returned to its original line and meeting St Aldate’s opposite Brewer Street.

When Christ Church was founded in 1546 it straddled the wall, and the part that remains is in a private part of the college and cannot be seen. It is Grade I listed as follows:

  • Wall to east of Bastion 21 (List Entry No. 1046579)
Bastion 21

This bastion is in a private part of the college and cannot be seen (List Entry No. 1046580).

Next: South Gate in St Aldate’s Next

© Stephanie Jenkins

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