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Coordinates: 51°45'36.52?N, 1°12'39.93?W

Headington is one of the district centres of Oxford, England. It lies on top of Headington Hill overlooking the city in the river valley below. The life of the large residential area congregates around London Road, the main thoroughfare from London to Oxford.

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[edit] History

The site of Headington shows evidence of continued occupation from the Stone Age, as the 2001 field excavations in Barton Lane found, suggesting a date in the 11th century BC. Pottery was found on the Manor Ground, suggesting an Iron Age settlement there in the 600s BC. A Roman kiln from around 300, now on display at the Museum of Oxford, and Anglo-Saxon burial remains from c.500 have also been discovered.

The name "Headington" stems from Saxon times, and comes from "Hedena's dun", "Hedena's hill", when it was the site of a palace or hunting lodge of the Kings of Mercia. In a charter of 1004, Ethelred II of England, "written at the royal ville called Headan dune", gave land in Headington to Frideswide's priory, which included the quarry and the area around it.

Headington developed rapidly in the early 20th century, significant amounts of housing developed around the medieval village, now known as Old Headington. In 1927, it became an urban district separate from the Headington Rural District and, in 1929, it was added to the city of Oxford. [1] In 2002, a re-warding of the City created a ward called Headington representing both sides of the London Road, from Bury Knowle Park to Headley Way, with two elected representatives. The first councillors for this ward were David Rundle (2002-) and Stephen Tall (2002-).

[edit] Headington today

Headington's main employers are medicine, education, and research; it has a large and growing population. In the centre of Headington are a number of shops, pubs, cafes, restaurants, and other services. The area also contains the main campus of Oxford Brookes University, and the city's main hospitals, including the John Radcliffe and Churchill. Oxford United were originally known as Headington United and their home ground until 2001, the Manor Ground (now demolished), had its main entrance on London Road.

The most famous landmark is The Headington Shark sculpture. The area contains a number of green spaces including Headington Hill and Bury Knowle parks. Close by is Shotover Hill, a heath and woodland area with views over Oxfordshire, and listed as a Site of Special Scientific Interest. In contrast, the Warneford Meadow a wild grassland, bought in 1918 by public subscription for the adjacent Warneford Hospital is presently being considered for development.

[edit] Famous residents

J. R. R. Tolkien, the author of The Lord of the Rings, lived at 76 Sandfield Road in Headington, from 1953 until 1968. C. S. Lewis, author of The Chronicles of Narnia, also lived in the district until his death in 1963 at "The Kilns". Lewis is buried at Holy Trinity Church at Headington Quarry. A more recent famous resident (as of 2001) was John Simpson, senior editor of the Oxford English Dictionary. A number of Oxford academics have decamped to Headington over the years, preferring it to North Oxford where most dons lived. They include Lord Krebs, David Marquand and Anthony Kenny. Sir Isaiah Berlin, the historian A. B. Emden, Lord Elton and John Johnson (the University Printer) were also among them. Others included music producer Adam Lee, the author Elizabeth Bowen, Robert Maxwell and Lord Nuffield (William Morris). Brian Aldiss, the science fiction writer, lives in Old Headington.Emma Watson,Hermione Granger from Harry Potter films currently is a resident of Headington which she stays with her mother and her younger brother as her parents are divorced.

[edit] See also

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