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St MARY MAGDALEN, Oxford
Oxford’s historic church of St Mary Magdalen stands on a traffic island near the Martyr’s Memorial, surrounded by an unruly churchyard. It looks like a rural oasis amidst the chaos of a city centre. The church is built on the site of a Saxon timber church that stood outside the city walls and which was destroyed by Vikings in the early 11th century. A new stone chapel was built in 1074 but the current building dates from the 12th century and was considerably rebuilt in the Victorian period. There is an ornate 14th century font and the tower is 16th century. Parliamentary troops were held prisoner in the church during the English Civil War, when Oxford was Charles I’s capital.