"Christ Church meadow"
Oxford from Christ Church Meadow
Creative Commons Attribution Share AlikeOxford from Christ Church Meadow - Credit: Bryan Pready

Christ Church Meadow is  bordered by the rivers Isis and Cherwell, and by Merton College and Christ Church. It is the location of many of the college boathouses, and the university’s main rowing events are held here.


The meadow is owned by Christ Church, one of the largest colleges of the university. The college was established in the sixteenth century; initially, Thomas Wolsey (c.1473-1530) founded Cardinal College here, but Wolsey fell from the grace of Henry VIII (1491-1547), who re-established the college in 1546 as Christ Church.


Founded by one king of England, it later served as the home and parliament of another, King Charles I (1600-1649), during the English Civil War (1642-1651).


The college has the distinction of being the site of Christ Church Cathedral, the cathedral church of the diocese of Oxford. Above the Great Quadrangle stands the college’s famous bell tower, Tom Tower, built in 1681-1682 and designed by Sir Christopher Wren (1632-1723).