New site proposed for Oxford memorial

Post date: 22/04/2016

By Colin Carritt


Our project is to have a permanent IBMT memorial in Oxford to the 31 men and women from Oxfordshire who went to Spain to defend the Spanish Republic during the Civil War, 1936-39. This update explains where we are with our planning application and other news.


After much hand-wringing, Oxford City Council have made clear that they would not consent to our memorial being sited next to the World War memorial in St Giles. This follows a barrage of objections from representatives of the Catholic Church in particular and other individuals who thought that the defeat of fascism in Spain was somehow less worthy than the defeat of fascism in Germany and Japan.


However, the city council were at pains to express their support for the concept of a memorial to the Oxfordshire volunteers of the International Brigade and have provided encouragement in the shape of offers of financial support. 


The proposal now is to site the memorial on the large grass triangle at the bottom of Headington Hill at its junction with Morrell Avenue. This is adjacent to South Parks, now the foremost venue for major city events and a popular area with high footfall. 


The council have suggested that the opportunity be taken to re-focus what has recently been a rather windswept area and to enhance it perhaps with seating, floral displays and other attractions centred on the memorial. We are now looking at modifications to the design to take account of the new setting and we will send another update as soon as we have details to hand. Do also take a look at the website where more information, plans and photos are available.


In the meantime, if you are not already a member, do please join the International Brigade Memorial Trust. The quarterly magazine is packed with interesting articles and news and is a highly professionally produced periodical. Subscriptions are just £25 for a household; £20 for an individual; £12.50 concessions.  You can email or ring 029 2019 5412 or go to


Finally,  if you haven't already got a copy of our magnificent 120-page, professionally finished book, “No Other Way – Oxfordshire and the Spanish Civil War 1936-39”, please write to John Haywood at 1 Queens Road, Banbury OX16 0EB enclosing your cheque payable to International Brigade Memorial Trust and priced £8.99 (ISBN 978 1 910448 05 2). It's so popular we've just sold out – but have ordered a reprint!


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