Coach permits for Oxford

Why a coach permit is required and how to get one.

All buses and coaches are banned from several streets in the city centre. The roads in question are referred to below as 'the prohibited area'.

Warning If you are entering the city from the west, please note that there is a 4.11m (13'6") height restriction at the Botley Road railway bridge.

Access to the prohibited area

During the restricted hours, access to the prohibited area by buses and coaches is by permit only. Permits are only issued where considerable difficulty or hardship would otherwise result.

If your vehicle's unladen weight is more than 7.5 tonnes, please note that you are not allowed to use Longwall Street, St Cross Road, South Parks Road, Museum Road, Blackhall Road, or Parks Road between its junction with Keble Road and South Parks Road, at any time unless your destination is in these streets.

The following streets fall within this area and require a coach permit for access.

Street Applicable restriction
High Street 7.30am - 6.30pm
Queens Lane  
St Aldates 7.30am - 6.30pm every day - to exit via High Street
Longwall Street Weight restriction 7.5 ton - access only
Broad Street To connect to Longwall Street
Holywell Street  
Jowett Walk  
Catte Street  
New Road  
Magdalen Street East and West 24 hours a day: only buses, taxis and private hire vehicles permitted
St Ebbes  
Beaumont Street Designated coach stop - authorised stopping places for the purpose of picking up and setting down passengers only. *
Parks Road  
Manor Road  
Cross Road  
Museum Road  
Turl Street  
Mansfield Road  
South Parks Road  
Castle Street 24 hours a day: only buses, taxis and private hire vehicles permitted
George Street To drop disabled passengers only
Pembrook Street  
Norfolk Street  

* A permit is not required for this street but it can be used for dropping off and picking up only (see below).

How to apply for a coach permit

Read the terms and conditions before you apply.

What you will need

You will need to provide the following information on your application.

  • Date of visit
  • Times of drop-offs/picks ups
  • Locations of drop-offs/picks ups
  • Coach registration

If you need more information contact the Civil Enforcement Team.

Apply for a coach permit

Coach permit terms and conditions

The permit will allow access to the prohibited area provided drivers follow these instructions.

  1. It is used on the day and date shown.
  2. The picking up and setting down of passengers is carried out only where shown on the permit and any supplementary instructions are complied with. This does not include parking or undue waiting.
  3. It is used solely for the purpose for which the application to Oxfordshire County Council was made.
  4. It is displayed clearly on the front nearside windscreen of the vehicle at all times during which it is within the prohibited area.
  5. Access through the bus gates is only permitted if essential for the location noted on the permit.

The permit does not grant any holder the right to contravene any other traffic regulation orders.

What happens next

If your application is successful, your permit will be sent to you via email.

Picking up and setting down

The authorised stopping places for picking up and setting down passengers are:

  • St Aldates South (northbound) – just south of the Combined Court
  • Beaumont Street (westbound) – just outside the Playhouse
  • St Giles’ (northbound) – in the layby by the Taylorian

The police and civil enforcement officers are under instructions to move on any coach not actually in the process of picking up or setting down passengers.

It is the coach operator's responsibility to make sure that all members of the group are present at the agreed time. A coach will not be allowed to wait for any latecomers.

Please take steps to make sure that once passengers have exited the coach, they do not obstruct the pavement.

Coach parking

Long term coach and lorry can be made at Redbridge Park and Ride. More information can be found on Oxford City Council’s website.

It can also be made at Oxford Parkway (Water Eaton) Park and Ride.

Access and directions into the city centre

To reach the north of the city centre (eg to visit the Sheldonian Theatre)

From the east: Coaches approaching from the east (A40 or B480) should proceed along the ring road (A40) to the north of Oxford, and then turn left at the Banbury Road roundabout onto the A4165. On arrival in the centre, they should drop their passengers in Beaumont Street and then proceed to the Redbridge Park and Ride.

From the south: Coaches approaching from the south (A34 or A423) should enter the city on the A4144 (Abingdon Road). On arrival in the centre they should either (i) proceed via Thames Street, Oxpens Road, Hollybush Row, Hythe Bridge Street, Worcester Street, Beaumont Street and drop passengers, then proceed to the Redbridge Park and Ride.

From the west: Coaches approaching from the west (A420 or B4044) should enter the city on the A420 (Botley Road). On arrival in the centre they should proceed via Hythe Bridge Street, Worcester Street, Beaumont Street and drop their passengers and then proceed to the Redbridge Park and Ride.

From the north: Coaches approaching from the north (A44, A423, A34 or A40) should enter the city on the A4165 (Banbury Road). On arrival in the centre, they should drop their passengers in Beaumont Street and then proceed to the Redbridge Park and Ride.

To reach the south of the city centre (eg to visit Christ Church)

From the east: Coaches approaching from the east (A40 or B480) should turn left and proceed along the ring road (A4142) to the south of Oxford and enter Oxford on the A4144 (Abingdon Road). On arrival in the centre, they should proceed directly to Redbridge Park and Ride.

From the south: Coaches approaching from the south (A34 or A423) should enter the city on the A4144 (Abingdon Road). On arrival in the centre, they should proceed directly to the Redbridge Park and Ride and set their passengers down there.  Beaumont Street may be used for a central drop off place but parking is not permitted there.

From the west: Coaches approaching from the west (A420 or B4044) should enter the city on the A420 (Botley Road). On arrival in the city centre, they should proceed via Hollybush Row and Oxpens Road and proceed to the Redbridge Park and Ride and set their passengers down there.  For city centre drop-offs please use Beaumont Street.

From the north: Coaches approaching from the North (A44, A423, A34 or A40) should enter the city on the A4165 (Banbury Road), or the A4144 (Woodstock Road). On arrival in the centre, they should proceed to drop their passengers in Beaumont Street where you may set down passengers and then proceed to Redbridge Park and Ride via Worcester Street, Hythe Bridge Street, Hollybush Row, Oxpens Road.