Monday, December 13, 2010

Oxford's Christmas Market


There could be no better time than Christmas to visit Oxford's famous historic landmark - the Covered Market.  It's a great place all year round, but the festive season has a special magic.

Candy canes
 Evergreen wreaths decorate crowded stalls and shops, the resinous fragrance of firs fills the air and Christmas trees and huge bunches of holly and mistletoe hang from the raftered ceiling in dense profusion.

Choose a tree and one of the stall assistants will, with the aid of a long pole, hook it down. Before you can say “I’m Dreaming of a White Christmas’, it will be trussed up with twine and deposited on your shoulder for the journey home.

There are a wealth of butcher’s shops in the market and as the build-up towards Christmas reaches a crescendo, vast layered displays outside each meat shop groan beneath the weight of pink turkeys, plucked clean but for a feathery ruff encircling each scrawny neck.

Christmas wreaths for sale
At Christmas time and throughout the year, venison, rabbits, pheasant, plump porkers and the occasional Highland deer clad in a coat of coarse gray-brown hair hang from huge butcher’s hooks awaiting the shopper with a taste for the finest of fare.

Throughout the year, the plum contract for butchers in the market is to supply the University with meat. The dons (professors) and their often illustrious guests; kings and presidents, oil sheiks and authors, wine and dine in a style unknown to the ordinary man. The custom of these grand colleges cannot help but improve the cash flow.

Posted by Anne Gordon on Monday, 13th December, 2010.


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