Ashmolean Museum Visit
(Saturday 25th November 1995)

About a year ago many of you expressed an interest in our Inspector Morse ties and asked about other activities. It is proposed to have a meeting on Saturday 25th November 1995 in Oxford. Not knowing what the interest is likety to be I have tried to arrange a low key event in conjunction with the Royal Institute of Great Britain who will also be visiting Oxford on that day. The arrangements are to have a private guided tour around the Ashmolean museum at 2pm followed by an afternoon cream tea in a private room at the Randolph Hotel opposite.

The Ashmolean Museum, established in 1683, is the oldest museum to be open to the public in this country. The present building, designed by C. R. Cockerell and completed in 1845, is one of the best examples of neo-Grecian architecture in Britain and provides a highly sympathetic interior for displays of works of art.

The treasures range in time from the human skull of about 6000 BC, excavated at Jericho, to twentieth-century works of art. On permanent display are the University’s collections of antiquities from Egypt, Greece, Rome and the Near East; British and European paintings – Italian, Dutch and Flemish, French Impressionist and Pre-Raphaelite; Asian Art, including Chinese bronzes, Islamic and Japenese ceramics, and Indian Sculpture; sculpture and applied art and European stringed instruments. It is even thought that the museum contains the famous Wolvercote Tongue!

The Randolph hotel takes its name from the Randolph Gallery which stood opposite and which, in turn, took its name from the Rev. Dr. Francis Randolph, one of the principal benefactors of the Ashmolean museum. It is a grade II listed building of 1863-6 by William Wilkinson.

Cost for the guided tour and cream tea will be 10 per person. Colin Dexter has been invited but at the time of writing has declined to reply. If there is sufficient interest it may be possible to organise a walk around some of the Inspector Morse locations in Oxford after tea or the following morning. Please meet outside the Ashmolean museum at 1.45pm. Prebooking is essential so please do not just turn up on the day.

I look forward to meeting as many as possible at the Ashmolean. I have also enclosed a merchandise form of souvenirs which will also be available on the day. Finally I believe from a friend that The Way Through The Woods will be shown 29th November and is quite excellent. Set your videos now!