On the sign:
OXFORDSHIRE COUNTY COUNCIL
The modern building in front of you is County Hall headquarters of Oxfordshire County Council. It was opened by Her Majesty the Queen in 1976.
The County Council is responsible for key public services in Oxfordshire, including schools, libraries. social and health care, roads, fire and rescue, trading standards, the museums service, county records, registration and waste management.
Many meetings of the County Council are open to the public.
For full derails or further information visit the reception area at the front of the building or contact 01865 792422 or write to Oxfordshire County Council, County Hall, New Road. Oxford OXIIND or visit our website ar www.oxfordshire.gov.uk
The adjoining castellated building to your right is the old County Hall, which was built in 1841. It still houses the Council Chamber and a historic courtroom which was in use as a Crown Court until 1985 and saw many important criminal trials.
This building is on the site of Oxford Castle, which was built by Robert dOilly in 1071. Parts of the castle - St Georges Tower, the base of the Round Tower and the Mound - survive today, Oxfords former prison, a fine example of a Victorian prison which finally closed in 1996, is situated behind the castellated building. To ensure permanent public access, these historic sites have been incorporated into a new heritage and hotel complex.
One hundred yards to your right is Castle Mound, which was an important part of the Castles defense. It was constructed by forced Saxon labor from material dug out of the surrounding moat. On top there would have originally been a tall wooden tower dominating the main route into the city from the west.