Should Oxford do more to celebrate Inspector Morse and Endeavour link?

·2-min read
John Thaw as Inspector Morse <i>(Image: Photo: ITV)</i>
John Thaw as Inspector Morse (Image: Photo: ITV)

Oxford should do more to publicise the city's connection with Inspector Morse, according to a fan of the ITV series, Lewis and Endeavour.

John Mair organised a Morse festival earlier this month to coincide with the last ever series of Morse prequel Endeavour.

The last episode of Endeavour starring Shaun Evans and Roger Allam concluded on March 12 and Mr Mair says it is now time for the city council to make the most of the city's role in the TV dramas inspired by the novels of Colin Dexter.

READ AGAIN: Morse author Colin Dexter 'killed off' TV series 

One of Mr Mair's ideas is to create a trail of plaques based on key locations in the TV episodes.

He said it was time to exploit the popularity of the three series - in a Radio Times readers' poll in 2018 Inspector Morse was voted best crime drama, while Endeavour was fourth and Lewis came 12th.

Mr Mair said: "Morse is Oxford and Oxford is Morse. What is there for the tourist in Oxford?

Oxford Mail:
Oxford Mail:

"Beautiful Cotswold stone colleges and Inspector Morse - little else.

"The university has put Oxford on the world's intellectual map, so the Morse franchise has put it on the world's tourist map.

READ AGAIN: Endeavour: the final viewing figures are released

"At my recent Morsefest in Jericho people came from all over the world to celebrate Endeavour morse.

"It's time for the city and county councils to wake up and smell the rich aroma of Morse's beer and salute his legacy."

Mr Mair's suggested trail includes the Morse bar at the Randolph Hotel, and the Old Bookbinders Ale House in Jericho, which appeared in the first ever episode of Inspector Morse in 1987, The Dead of Jericho.

He pointed out that other cities were investing heavily in their film heritage.

Oxford Mail:
Oxford Mail:

According to Mail Online, construction has begun on a new multimillion-pound TV and film studio in Birmingham, designed to exploit the city's links with the crime drama Peaky Blinders, create over 700 jobs, add £30m to the local economy.

The Inspector Morse franchise is thought to have raised tens of millions of pounds for the tourism industry in Oxford over more than three decades.

There are a number of guided Morse tourist trails in the city.

Hayley Beer-Gamage, CEO of tourism organisation Experience Oxfordshire, said earlier: "Film and TV offer a multi-million pound opportunity for destinations and Oxford has certainly benefited from the Endeavour, Lewis and Morse legacy and will continue to do so long after the shows cease to be filmed.

Oxford Mail:
Oxford Mail:

READ AGAIN: Inspector Morse raised millions in tourism cash

"These shows are iconic and loved by both domestic and international visitors so the opportunity to attract these audiences to the city and county as part of a longer stay is really important to our destination ambitions.

"Award-winning Oxford Official Walking Tours offer a Morse, Lewis and Endeavour tour and we continue to increase the number of tours delivered as demand increases.”