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Visiting Linacre College, Oxford, England: graduate college in a quiet area of the city

Updated on November 9, 2015
Flag of England
Flag of England | Source
Linacre College, Oxford
Linacre College, Oxford | Source
Thomas Linacre
Thomas Linacre | Source
Map location of Oxford, in Oxfordshire
Map location of Oxford, in Oxfordshire | Source

Ideally located at Cherwell Edge

This Oxford College was founded in 1962, and named for Thomas Linacre (1460-1524). A number of years ago, during a visit to the College, I was particularly interested to see a display of correspondence between Thomas Linacre and Erasmus, with whom the former was contemporary.

Some features and history

Its gabled architecture is somewhat reminiscent of Hughes Hall, Cambridge. The College moved to its present site at Cherwell Edge in 1977, at the corner of St Cross Road and and South Parks Road. Subsequently, its buildings have considerably expanded, although significantly the additions are in keeping with the red brick, gabled style of the building which existed when it moved there. Stated otherwise, Linacre College certainly does not look like a 'modern' college (other Oxford Colleges such at St Catherine's and Wolfson College would presumably qualify for this description). Interestingly also, the architecture of another modern Oxford College, Nuffield, was criticized on completion for not looking modern 'enough'! One may suppose that these arguments are never-ending.

In any case, Linacre College was not purpose built (as were some modern Colleges at Oxford) but, rather, acquired and adapted existing, available property. Previously, Linacre College's main building (now known as the O C Tanner building) was variously a private house, a convent and then part of St Anne's College.

In keeping with the practice of various Colleges of Oxford (and, indeed, Cambridge) University, places for students at the College are limited to graduates.

Some former holders of fellowships and alumni

Fellowship holders at Linacre College have included Sir John Hicks (1904-1989, joint Nobel prizewinner in Economic Sciences, 1972); Sir Paul Nurse (1949-, Nobel Prizewinner in Physiology or Medicine and President of the Royal Society). Former alumni include: Dr Frene Ginwala (1932-, Speaker of the National Assembly of South Africa 1994-2004); Dr David Kelly (1944-2003, UN weapons inspector).

Also worth seeing

The visitor attractions to Oxford are outstandingly broad; a few of these include the Bridge of Sighs, the Radcliffe Camera, the Bodleian Library, Oxford Castle, Christ Church, Magdalen College.


How to get there : United Airlines flies from New York Newark to London Heathrow Airport, where car rental is available. Distance from Heathrow Airport to Oxford : 77 kilometres. Oxford links by rail with London Paddington station. Some facilities may be withdrawn, without notice. Please check with the airline or your travel agent for up to date information.

MJFenn is an independent travel writer based in Ontario, Canada.

For your visit, these items may be of interest


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