The Covered Market is not one shop, but approximately 50, all of them under the roof of the market hall. You can get: shoes, clothes, cakes, cookies, milk-shakes, flowers, frames, tea, sandwiches, cheese, fruit, meat, fish, newspapers, a haircut, ethno kitsch, jewellery, sports wear, soap... Watch the butchers preparing meat or skinning deer or pheasants, watch the cake makers decorating a yummy-looking cake with a tiny model of Darth Vader (!), get yourself a cuppa at Georgina's or Brother's Cafe, go for an excellent milk-shake at Moo-Moo's and fill the little space that's left in your stomach with one of Ben's cookies - the best in town!
The Covered Market was opened in 1774, but most of its structures date back to 1890. It's the perfect place to hang out on a rainy day.
What to buy: everything you need
What to pay: normal prices
Right on Broad street in Oxford (and roughly opposite the main Blackwell Book shop) stands the art and poster store.
My wife says it is the best art shop she has ever seen. I lost in there for hours, which meant I could go off and do something far more interesting.
Anyway, the recommendation still stands.
By the way, when you put 'Art' into google picture search you get something like 273 million hits - so how come this piece of c**p gets to the top of the listings. Answer me that one.
Walking down High Street (Oxford's main street), I happened upon this jewel of a store and was quite enraptured about my discovery! Established in the 19th century, it is now the store in England with the biggest and widest selection of rare prints and books. You will feel as you enter this temple of often olden imagerie, the sheer scholasticism of it. But do not be afraid of this, instead, just go in and bask in it while you're looking through their baskets, their walls, and anywhere else they keep their treasure. ;-) Ah yes! They do have exhibitions going on many times in the year.
Opening Hours: Monday-Saturday 10:00 - 18:00
What to buy: Actually I've just discovered that, and I quote ' it is the biggest seller of fine prints, maps, engravings, 20th century etchings and views of Oxford, the famous University city in all of the UK[...] Sanders' range of prints and map varies from British Topography to Mythological and we carry Mezzotint Portraits, Topographical, Decorative, Sporting, Caricatures (caricatures), Maritime, Military, Natural History, Literary and Fine Art prints. Our range of Oxford prints is excellent. We offer maps (maps) of every part of the world, printed between the 17th and 19th centuries. We also have a good selection of 18th, 19th and early 20th century Japanese ukiyo-e woodblock prints (japanese prints) and book illustrations. '
It is truly a beautiful place to visit if you like such objects, like I do! Have a look on their website, you'll be able to see a very exhaustive array of what they may have in store for you, along with the individual prices. And it seems that you might be able to buy online from anywhere around the world.
What to pay: The prices tend to be on the high end of the scale. But you will still find that the rich of heart but not so rich of the pocket, can still have his heart's content with some of the prints available. And they do have sales once in a while...
The international charity Oxfam, originated in 1942 as the Oxford Committee for Famine Relief. Its office, in Broad Street, Oxford, became the world’s first ever permanent charity shop. Opened in 1948 it is still there today. They sell second-hand, donated goods, as well as Fairtrade foods and other products made overseas.
The Oxford Committee began as a means to help civilians blockaded by the Nazi’s. They then extended their brief to ‘the relief of suffering in consequence of the war’. These days they are engaged in all forms of projects, such as relief from the Indian Ocean tsunami in Sri Lanka.
I am a big fan because Oxfam uses local workers to run its projects. It works towards a sustainable support which can lead to permanent solutions. They are specialists in water supplies and sanitation facilities.
Visit their Oxford shop at 17, Broad Street or make a donation online.
A Nokia franchise currently occupies one of the loveliest buildings on Oxford's main shopping street. In fact, the shop was first opened by a small group of Finnish settlers during the 15th century. They introduced the first portable sundial to medieval England and sales were brisk.
Honestly its true!
Alright then, it isn't true, I lied. But it is certainly a strange and witty combination of old and modern ;-)
Unlike the shops on Cornmarket, these are the ones that you can find in any other city, High Street has all sorts of antiques, handicrafts, and jewellery shops, that you will only find here. So if you want another shopping experience take a look here instead.
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