Cowley Road was cordoned oﬀ by emergency services after an out of control car crashed through the side of a shop just after 7am last Sunday. The vehicle, reportedly a silver Peugeot 207, ﬁrst knocked over a lamp post in front of Tesco, and then drove into The Furniture Shop at the intersection of Cowley, Bullingdon Road, and Chapel Street.
“Thames Valley Police was called at 7.19am on April 17,” Lucy Billen of the Thames Valley Police media team told Cherwell.
Eyewitnesses told the police that they had seen two people, a man and a woman, get out of the vehicle after it crashed, and leave by foot. No injuries were reported, though there is still no word on the whereabouts or condition of the car’s two occupants. The police have kept searching for them and are concerned they may have been hurt, judging from the state in which the car was found. “The investigation continues,” Lucy Billen added.
The family-run shop however was seriously damaged in the crash, and the owners said it would have to be closed for at least a month as the owners repair and rebuild their business. As well as the shop window which was entirely destroyed in the accident, a brick pillar supporting the building was damaged.
Because this aﬀected the structure of the shop, works started straight after the car was towed away by a team of around 20 ﬁreﬁghters. The family running The Furniture Shop have said the total insurance cost of the reparations could be up to “tens of thousands of pounds” and described the damage as “surreal” according to Oxford Mail.
“This is a big shock for us all and we are now counting the cost,” Omar Nawaz told an Oxford Mail journalist. The 35 year-old and his brother Kasim Nawaz help their parents run the shop which has been owned by the family for 30 years. “It’s the East Oxford spirit – you just get on with it,” Omar Nawaz said. “We have been here for a long long time, we don’t intend on going anywhere. It is all a bit surreal but you can’t hang around and not get on with things or you would be in the same position.”
Juliette Perry, a Somerville ﬁrst year who will be living in Cowley next year, told Cherwell she saw the neighbourhood as a “friendly, relatively quiet” area. “Just like any city it has the odd incident but nothing too unusual. It seems very irresponsible and a real shame that people haven’t taken responsibility.
“However I wouldn’t be worried about cycling to and from Cowley next year when I’m living there – accidents do happen, does it put me oﬀ – no, it’s no more or less safe than cycling anywhere else in the city. I just think it was lucky that no one was hurt.”