Professor Christopher Brown awarded Freedom of the City
Professor Christopher Brown, Director of the Ashmolean Museum, has been awarded the Freedom of the City of Oxford, to mark his 16 years in charge of the museum and retirement in September this year.
On the evening of 2 July 2014 the Lord Mayor of Oxford, Mohammed Abbasi, presented Professor Brown with a ceremonial scroll at a ceremony in Oxford Town Hall.
Professor Brown said: "I am absolutely thrilled to be honoured in this way by the City of Oxford. My intention from the very beginning was to open up the Museum to a much broader public, particularly to the people of the City of Oxford and the County of Oxfordshire. The results of our redevelopment have exceeded all my expectations. It is a huge honour to be awarded the Freedom of the City on behalf of the Museum and colleagues who have worked on the transformation of the Ashmolean."
The Freedom of the City of Oxford is awarded under two categories - persons of distinction or persons who have, in the opinion of the council, rendered eminent services to the city.
Only a small number of people have received this honour, including Sir Roger Bannister, the late Nelson Mandela, Aung San Suu Kyi, author Colin Dexter and Philip Pullman, author of the trilogy, His Dark Materials. The City of Leiden, City District of Bonn, the Chancellor, Masters and Scholars of the University of Oxford and Oxford Brookes University have also been awarded with the honour. Oxfam was the last organisation to receive the Freedom of the City.
Councillor Bob Price, Professor Christopher Brown, and Lord Mayor of Oxford Mohammed Abbasi
Photograph by Marc West