Not our future

Welcome to the fourth way marker of ‘The Peculiar Pot’ – a story trail for Thame. 

This trail was funding through Public Art Funding, and installed in 2023. Find out more about the project through this link. 

If you would like to follow the trail from it’s start, the first way marker can be found on the corner of Roman Way and Saxon Square (OX9 2FS) – located in the centre of the green space. 

Listen to the part of the story, relevant to this way marker, below:

The Peculiar Pot – Part 4

That is NOT the future we want

This part of our story paints a picture of a rather dystopian Thame. The workshops that developed the story engaged children in the process. They were delivered in 2021 – so the memories of Covid-19 lockdowns were still fresh in their minds – you hear the real experiences of this time being brought in to shape the story – people wearing masks echoing the long months of needing to wear masks in public; the rainbow coloured buildings echoing the symbol of the rainbow that was adopted to celebrate the hope brought by the dedicated NHS staff who brought us through this difficult time in our history. 

If you lost someone during Covid and would like to find a space for quiet reflection and memory, then consider our Memorial Gardens at the top of Upper High Street. 

The picture painted through this part of our story is not the Thame of the future that we want! 

The Tree of hope

During December 2020, when Christmas get-togethers were cancelled, a ‘Tree of Hope’ was established at Thame Library for people to share their messages of hope for the year to come. The tree at the top of this way marker is our ‘Tree of Hope’ for the future of Thame. The way marker is positioned here – in a location that we want to keep ‘green’, and Cuttlebrook Nature Reserve already does a lot of work in the nature reserve that is located behind the trees along the side of Southern Road Recreation Ground in front of you. However did you know that Thame has a Green Living Plan with ambitions to achieve far more for our natural world?  The plan has over 180 actions and it needs everyone in and around Thame to play their part to make sure that Thame has a cleaner, greener future for us and our decedents to enjoy. 

Get involved in protecting and restoring our natural world

There are many local groups working to achieve this aim and you can find out about many of them through these links. 

  • Thame Green Living created the Green Living Plan.  They work closely with Thame Town Council and are keen to hear from anyone who wants to play a part in creating a sustainable Thame for the future.
  • 21st Century Thame is a partnership between local volunteers and town and district councils, coming together to help ensure Thame stays vibrant. As well as delivering Thame Trees and Sustainability Spark, they are also responsible for local events such as Thame Carnival, Taste of Thame and Thame Art Crawl, and run Thame Equipment Bank.
  • Chinnor & Thame Friends of the Earth is part of a movement creating a safer climate, flourishing nature, and healthy air, water and food, now and for future generations.
  • Thame COP is a local version of the global COP climate summit and invites the ‘parties’ of Thame: businesses, schools, faith organisations and groups, to do the same.
  • Cuttlebrook Nature Reserve is maintained through the extensive work of the Cuttle Brook Conservation Volunteers (CBCV). 
  • River Thame Conservation Trust is a grassroots charity working to protect and improve the River Thame and its tributaries, including the Cuttlebrook.
  • Green Crendon is a local initiative, set up by a group of people who want to create a greener, more sustainable and climate resilient village and community.

The Peculiar Pot? 

This story trail was partially inspired by the discovery of an Iron Age pot near this location, that was unearthed by a badger. It lead to an archaeological survey which revealed that Thame has a rich prehistoric past, going back around six thousand years. Find out more about Thame’s history through our summary page here, visit Thame Museum, or for a more in-depth look at Thame’s history, you may want to consider joining Thame Historical Society.

Challenge Questions: 

Listen to the story: 

  • What do people want to ‘turn upside down’?

Look at the Way marker

  • What word is spelt wrong on this way marker?


  • To find the next way marker, carefully cross Southern Road and walk around the edge of the roundabout to turn into Lincoln Place (the cul-de-sac on the left). Walk to the end of the road to find the cut through to Dorchester Road car park, behind Co-op.
  • Cross over the car park and walk through the alley way ahead to come out onto the High Street. The final way marker is outside the front of Thame Town Hall – the red brick building with the clock tower in the centre. 

Go to the fifth way marker