Photos of Oxford in May

Oxford in May is beautiful. After a long grey British winter, in late April and May there is a real transformation as trees come into leaf and blossom covers many of the streets. The city’s architecture is complemented by nature’s beauty. There is also a great feeling of newness because of the tremendous greenness, which is very vivid. I particularly notice it after coming back from New York in April. There are few countries, which see such an intense green – in UK, we like to complain about the weather but the rain does help the colour and freshness.

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I love these daises which grow in wildflower verges by the side of many roads.cutteslowe-park-1-may

May is also the month when we hold Sri Chinmoy Races at Cutteslowe Park, north Oxford. It is a great time to be in the park, which has quite a few areas of natural wildlife flowers.apple-blossom

Late flowering Apple Blossom on Marston road.cycling-to-exams

May is also exam season. In mid / late May, you see many students cycling and walking to exams with different colour carnations – pink is in the middle of exams. Red for last exam, white for first exam. I’m so glad Oxford kept the tradition of sub-fusc. I’m also very glad my days of doing exams are over!.queens-lane-2

Lilac flowers spilling over from New College onto Queens Lane. That is All Souls in the background.queens-lane-flowers-may

Another view of New College lilac bushes. This road is closed to traffic, so it is a real haven for cyclists and walkers.may-river-rowing-sun-2

Late May is eights week in Oxford. The Oxford colleges compete in rowing races on the River Thames. The college club-houses are behind.

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Another view of the River Thames.

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It’s not always bright sun in May. In fact, you often get very heavy rain, which leads to localised flooding. This is a cycle path near University Parks.

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Trees in Oxford Castle Mound

Trinity College

Trinity college gardens

Trinity College gardens has its own post

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May is also Bluebell season.

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Late Daffodils (as long as not eaten by slugs)

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Back garden in May.

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This is my local park – Horse Chestnut covered path.

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A traditional May Day Event Morris Dancers on May 1st. This was early in the morning after a long night of revellery.

Every year, I get more joy from Oxford in May; there is even a danger one day I may try and write a poem.

Instead, I will share a poem written by J.R.R. Tolkien about Oxford in 1911.

From the many-willow’d margin of the immemorial Thames,
Standing in a vale outcarven in a world-forgotten day,
There is dimly seen uprising through the greenly veiled stems,
Many-mansion’d, tower-crowned in its dreamy robe of grey,
All the city by the fording: aged in the lives of men,
Proudly wrapt in mystic mem’ry overpassing human ken.

J.R.R. Tolkien (1911)

I don’t know if he wrote in May, but it is interesting to see the imagery which would later end up in his classic ‘Lord of the Rings’

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