As you might expect, most places adapt the meaning of "open late" to the number of customers coming in at the time. Establishments specifying a closing time of 11 or 11.30pm on Fridays and Saturdays may close half an hour earlier on less habitually busy days. Al-Shami on Walton Crescent open until midnight, and the Hi-Lo Jamaican Eating House on the Cowley Road does entirely what it feels like. In fact, heading east is the best option for late-night snackers; you'll be able to get a meal at an Indian restaurant on the Cowley Road up to at least 11pm; the Rice Box (Chinese) is open until midnight daily and G&D's (also open late on Little Clarendon Street/St Aldates) serve pizza bagels, ice cream and more until midnight nightly. Other Cowley Road fast-food joints open until 2am - and Kebab Kid at no. 146 opens until 4am (the latest we know of). Clubbers and other creatures of the night will be able to find sustenance until as late as 2am in central Oxford at one of the city's venerable kebab-vending vehicles.
We do not suggest any particular course of action, merely provide the information. But if you can't wait until breakfast, Wheatley service station (just off the Oxford-Aylesbury road and the M40, two miles east of Wheatley - approach by the A40 from Headington) opens 24 hours.
Here are some other options for situations of desperate nighttime need:
...listed with those nearest the centre first:
- Esso, Oxpens Road. Map: B7. Tel: 01865 721397
- Mini-market with the usual range of convenience foods, tobacco, mobile phone top-up cards, Lotto tickets etc. Hatch service late at night.
- Q8, 49 Oxford Road. Map: F/G7. Tel: 01865 715506
- Minimarket with range of stuff including fresh(ish) fruit & veg. A cautious gentleman was unwilling to confirm whether it's still 'Hatch service only' from 1am on. Cash machine.
- BP, Wolvercote Roundabout. Map: B2. Tel: 01865 311625
- Open 24 hours even at Christmas and New Year. Wide range of goods in the attached M&S store.
- Shell, 59 London Road, Headington. Map: G5. Tel: 01865 765437
- Open again after refurbishment. We'll post hours here once we get hold of them, but in short, it's 24 hours, so you're all right.
- Tesco, Marcham Road, Abingdon. Tel: 01235 707445
- Manned 6am - midnight; pay at pump midnight - 6am.
Our full list of Oxford takeaways can be found here, but for starters:
- Woodstock Road Chemist, 59 Woodstock Road. Map: D2. Tel: 01865 515226
- ...now open until 7.30pm daily.
- Boots @ Oxford Retail Park, Ambassador Avenue, Cowley. Map: I8. Tel: 01865 717699
- Pharmacy is open from 8am until midnight on weekdays (main store times vary). Saturdays it closes at 10pm; Sundays it's open 10.30am-4.30pm. www.boots.com/en/Store-Locator/Boots-Oxford-Oxford-Retail-Park
- Tesco, Abingdon. Tel: 01235 707400
- Has an in-store pharmacy open 8am-8pm Mon-Sat, Sun 10am-4pm
- Sainsbury's, Heyford Hill (see Supermarkets below). Map: F9. Tel (direct): 01865 777663
- Weekdays 8am-9pm, Sat 8am-8pm, Sun 10am-4pm
A few other pharmacies open outside normal working hours. Click here for the NHS page on which you can search for details.
The Co-op is probably Oxford's most widespread smaller supermarket, having branches in Botley, Rose Hill, Marston and Cowley as well as the more central locations listed below. Some branches open until midnight; most open until 10pm. The following are listed in order of the nearest to the town centre first (times correct at 28/7/11):
- 42 Walton Street, Jericho. Map: B2. Tel: 01865 511884
- 7am-12midnight Mon-Sat, 8am-12am Sun.
- 217-219 Cowley Road, East Oxford. Map: F6. Tel: 01865 727717
- 7am-11pm Mon-Sat, 8am-11pm Sun.
- 297 Iffley Road, East Oxford. Map: E7. Tel: 01865 243828
- 7am-12am Mon-Sat, 8am-12am Sun.
- 15 Old Marston Road, Marston. Map: F4. Tel: 01865 764546
- 7.30am-10pm Mon-Sat, 10am-4pm Sun.
- 22 Cherwell Drive, Marston. Map: F4. Tel: 01865 765326
- 6am-11pm Mon-Sat, 7am-11pm Sun.
- 228 - 240 Banbury Road, Summertown. Map: C3. Tel: 01865 515377
- 7am-10pm Mon-Sat, 12noon-6pm Sun.
- Unit 1, Westway Shopping Centre, Botley. Map: A6. Tel: 01865 721935
- 7am-10pm Mon-Sat, 10am-4pm Sun.
- 152 London Road, Headington. Map: G5. Tel: 01865 766132
- 7am-10pm Mon-Sat, 10am-4pm Sun.
- 74 Rose Hill, Rose Hill. Map: F8. Tel: 01865 779250
- 7am-10pm Mon-Sat, 8am-9pm Sun.
- 21 Templars Square, Cowley centre. Map: G7. Tel: 01865 772121
- 7am-8pm Mon-Sat, 10am-4pm Sun.
Local, Magdalen Street. Map: D5. Tel: 01865 204969
- 7am-11pm Mon-Sat, 11am-5pm Sun. The larger branch in the Westgate Centre (map: D5) is open until 8pm Mon-Sat & 11-5 Sun.
- Local, 59 London Road, Headington. Map: G5. Tel: 01865 765437
- 7am-10pm daily walk-in; 10pm-7am hatch service. Attached to 24/7 petrol station - see Garages above.
- Heyford Hill (on ring road). Map: F9. Tel: 01865 771146
- 7am-10pm Mon-Wed, 7am-11pm Thu & Fri, 6am-10pm Sat, 10am-4pm Sun.
- Metro, Magdalen Street (formerly Borders Bookshop). Map: F6. Tel: 01865 447215
- 7am - 12am Mon-Sat, 11am - 5pm Sun.
- Metro, Cowley Road. Map: F6. Tel: 01865 447600
- 7am - 12am Mon-Fri, 7am-10pm Sat, 10am - 4pm Sun.
- Extra, Unit 2, Oxford Retail Park, Ambassador Avenue. Map: H8. Tel: 01865 441400
- It's not actually open 24/7, but almost: Mon 8am - Sat 10pm, 10am - 4pm Sun.
- Extra, Marcham Road, Abingdon, OX14 1TU. Tel: 01235 707400
- If you've got a car this other not-quite-24-hr supermarket may be useful. 8am Mon - 10pm Sat, 10am - 4pm Sun.
- Queen Street (central). Map: D5. Tel: 01865 248075.
- Not particularly late, but included because our founder especially liked them. Mon, Tue, Wed, Fri, Sat: 8am-7pm, Thu: 8am-8pm, Sun: 11am-5pm.
- 254-252 Banbury Road, Summertown (north). Map: C3. Tel: 01865 316873
- Mon-Wed, Sat: 8am-8pm, Thu & Fri: 8am-9pm, Sun: 11am-5pm.
- Oxford Retail Park, Cowley (south east). Map: H8. Tel: 01865 316873
- Mon-Thu: 9am-9pm, Fri: 8.30am-9pm, Sat: 8.30am-8pm, Sun: 10.30am-4.30pm.
Video & DVD rentals; Books
- Movies, 25 Walton Street. Map: C5. Tel: 01865 554488
- Open until 11pm Fri & Sat, 10pm other days. Good range of world cinema and other arty stuff.
Since the demise of Borders UK (around Christmas 2009) there is now nowhere to buy books late at night in Oxford. How are the mighty fallen.
royalmail.com won't tell us much about this, effectively suggesting that we go round and look at all the post boxes. So, to an extent, we did. The following is a list of last weekday collection times in various key locations (Saturday collections from most of these will be 12 noon, and from October 2007 there are no Sunday or Bank Holiday collections at all in Oxford):
Some marvellous and even more diligent individuals also got together to create a website which aims to locate all Royal Mail postboxes on OpenStreetMap, along with last posting times. Have a look, and contribute using your own local knowledge, here: www.dracos.co.uk/play/locating-postboxes
- Royal Mail House, Oxpens Road, nr. train station (Map: C6): 7.15pm (this is still the last post in Oxford as of 01.10.2010)
- Box at rail station (Map: C5): 5.30pm
- Central post office, St Aldate's, town centre (Map: D6): 7pm
- Box at junction of King Edward Street & High Street (Map: D5): 6.30pm
- Box on corner of Queen's Lane, High Street junction (Map: D5): 6.45pm
- Box at corner of Clarendon building, junction of Catte & Broad Streets (Map: D5): 5.30pm
- Box at corner of St Giles & Little Clarendon Street (Map: D5): 6.45pm
- Walton Street post office, Jericho (Map: C5): 6.45pm
- Box at the junction of Banbury & Apsley Roads, north Oxford ((Map: C2): 5pm
- Box on Bridge Street, OX2 (Map C5): 7pm Mon to Fri
- Cowley Road post office, east Oxford (Map: E6): 6.15pm - but you can drop off and pay for items for delivery first thing the next morning until 12am weekdays!
- Box at Oxford Off-licence and Groceries (formerly St Clements post office), 48 St Clements (Map: E6): 5.30pm
- Box at Donnington Post Office, 239 Iffley Road (Map: F7): 5.30pm
Post Office Opening Times:
Locksmiths, emergency glaziers, etc.
The following glaziers are available for 24 hr call-out 365 days a year:
- A & C Glass & Glazing, 282a Abingdon Road. Map: D7. Tel: 01865 243300
- Also branches in Abingdon, Wallingford, Thame, Bicester, Witney.
- Oxford Glass, Cowley. Tel: 01865 242450. Tel: 07717 741275. Two glaziers on call, of whom one should be free about 95% of the time.
- McLean's, 9 & 10 Chiltern Business Centre, Garsington Rd, Cowley. Map: G7. Tel: 01865 715165. 24 hour board-up service, some glasswork also available 24/7 depending on weather and stock and circumstances generally.
Likewise locksmiths are positively falling over themselves to offer you out-of-hours services. Many of those listed in Yellow Pages are large nameless companies with a local subsection. A few independent local firms are:
- A L Matthews: 01865 553119 / 07980 205235
- BMA Varsity: 01865 714000 / 0800 092 9990
Please note that when locked out of your house at midnight you may not have easy access to the internet, so we advise making some sort of small wallet- or purse-based note at this stage.
Need more info? Find nationwide opening times on www.lateopening.co.uk
Something on this page wrong / need updating? Please let us know!