Monday, 6 December 2010

It's all cloak and doggers in Oxfordshire

I was just scanning the newspaper yesterday, when an article caught my eye. It was an article about an area approximately 1 mile from where I live, an area called Shotover Park.

Given that the Shotover is a pretty remote and relatively small place, it was impressive that it had made it into the national newspapers.

'Huzzar!' I thought to myself, 'the residents of deepest, darkest Oxfordshire have finally made it, and are now firmly on the map!'

Unfortunately, I hadn't properly read the title of the article, or I wouldn't have been celebrating in such a  premature fashion. It was: 'The doughty baronet and the doggers: Sir Beville's polite war on al fresco liaisons on his estate'.

As the title suggests, it was an article about people partaking in an activity called 'dogging' in a layby just off the the A40 road. And because I am like Mother Theresa except not as dead, I have included this link to explain dogging, for all those people who don't yet experience this phenomena in their country (it seems to be a predominantly British pastime). Please be warned, it describes acts of a rude nature, and you don't want to be caught looking at it by your co-workers because they will instantaneously assume that you partake in it. And if you tried to explain that you didn't, you would end up looking even more guilty.  

Anyway, as if the rampant 'dogging' activity wasn't scandal enough, it transpired that it wasn't just the layby that the doggers were using.

Their, ermmm.... "activity".... had spilled into the nearby Shotover Park which borders onto it. Just to put it into context, Shotover Park is home to the extremely posh Shotover House; a stately home that has been visited by both Queen Elizabeth I in 1592, and Queen Elizabeth II in 1991. That is, it's the kind of place that you visit to have afternoon tea with your pinky finger sticking out, as opposed to open-air shenanigans. 

So, it transpired that I lived less than a mile away from the lurid underbelly of polite Oxfordshire society. How bally exciting!

The owner of Shotover Park and House is Sir Beville Stainer, and he has apparently started to get rather pissed off having to drive past copulating couples on the way into his estate, and step over used condoms to enter the house. Quite understandable really.

Pic.No.1 Sir Beville outside Shotover House which is located in Shotover Park

Pic.No.2  A map showing the dogging area

So that is the latest scandal to hit Forest Hill and the surrounding area.

Dogging is a funny hobby really, quite different to knitting or stamp collecting.  And what is really weird is that it only seems to be very prevalent in the UK. What's that all about then?

P.S. I was researching 'dogging' to find out what it was all about, and there are some eyebrow-raising sites out there.

Update 7th December

Because I am kind, and because Candice suggested it, I nipped out today and took some pictures of the dogging layby for you to look at.

Pic.No.1.The layby is off to the left of the road but it isn't that clear

 Pic.No.2. A lorry parked up in the A40 layby. That doesn't mean he was dogging though


  1. lmao - "quite different to knitting or stamp collecting"?? Bahaha - that had me laughing my fool head off.

    Because you dared me (not really but it felt like you were daring me when I read between the lines) I went searching for the term "dogging". I stopped my search when I came across this article title...It was enough to make me laugh at the turn of phrase. LOL =) I really am lame like that! =)

    "Dogging Craze Has Brits in Heat"

  2. I really don't understand why people shouldn't be able to take their pets for a walk without being hassled about it.

  3. 'Dogging' is the single biggest google trap for my website, to the point where we've even written some spoof dogging posts and created blogging as a category. We are mischievous scamps! :)

  4. Well dogging certainly sounds a lot more enjoyable than tweeting. What if it was a famous person who was caught dogging? Would that be better? Next time you have NG and Izzy in Shotover Park, you'd best be careful just where you go.

  5. Hello. I was searching for dogging sites in Oxford and came across your blog. Please let me apologise on behalf of the considerate doggers out there. We are not all the same as portrayed in the media. As with anything it's a minority that spoil it for everyone else.
    As being as you live so close why don't you pop down and say hello sometime.

    PS: Bring a warm coat it's a bit chilly this time of year!

  6. Shotover Park --- best name ever.

    Dogging --- new to me, but wow your neighbourhood just got a lot more interesting, now didnt it?

  7. You need to get your camera and take your ass on over to the dogging place.

    Think of the blog posts you could write!

  8. Awww Jewell.... that is a well lame headline!! Made me bloody laugh though! Do you have dogging over there?

  9. I know Fran, it's a scandal. By the way, did you know that the term dogging originated from the fact that doggers used to use the phrase 'I am off out to walk the dog', as a cover up for their boffing activity.

  10. LOL - well, yeah apparently we do have it over here as well, unbeknown to me until this post where you corrupted my innocence! =) lmao

    Ironically the link in the search just before the article title that I put in my first comment was "American Dogging Locations By County". Apparently so popular you can search the entire US by county...who knew!? =)

    Of course, curiosity prompted me to search middle of no where Missouri...nothing where I am at, but one of the links listed in the state of Missouri said "by the bathrooms if you have a lookout". How romantic - potty dogging! Gag! =)

  11. Blimey Bren, that is fantastic, it really made me laugh. So, let me get this straight, somehow your blog is picked up when people type in dogging? What you been up to me dear?

  12. Hi BB, LOL! So you prefer dogging to tweeting? Let me just see if you have a twitter account......!!

  13. Hi Anon, and welcome! Thanks for the dogging invite, but it is a bit too cold for my liking to get into all that open-air action.

    It's also nice to hear that most of your dogging chums are more considerate types. Enjoy the layby!

  14. Hi Jayne and Brahm! I know... who would have thought that Oxford was so cosmopolitan? I am going to go and take a picture of the layby so that you can see how picturesque it is.

  15. Blimey ! with two teens & all their friends' liberal conversations I thought I knew everything ! Next time I say I'm off to take the dog for a walk I will have a wry smile on my face !

  16. Apparently it's because Oxford is semi rural and there's lots of nooks and crannies according to


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