The Quads

View of Tom Quad from above the north-west cornerTom Quad

The largest quad in Oxford, Tom Quad, or Great Quad as it was originally known, was laid out in the mid 1500s and apart from some alterations to the line of the paths and to the terraces in the 1870s very little has changed. The current lead fountain of Mercury was added in 1928, and there never appears to have been any planting other than the grass lawns. (Shown right, click to enlarge)

Peckwater Quad

(In main image above) Originally created in the early 1700s, it was only in 1936 that the lawns were laid out “rather than the present windswept waste of gravel and dust” – the quad was, for a short period in its history, made more colourful with window boxes and stripy awnings

Currently the quad retains its 1930s layout of gravel paths and lawns, but without window boxes, awnings or any ornamental planting.