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Radley History Club


Radley History Club meets on the second Monday evening of each month (apart from August) at 7.30 pm in Radley Parish Church. The Club’s aims are to:

  • study the history of Radley and the surrounding area
  • pursue any historical activity (including genealogical research) that the members may desire from time to time.

The Club organises a series of speakers on local and historical topics for its meetings. A visit or tour of a local place of interest is often arranged in the spring or summer. New members and guests are welcome. Visit the Club’s website for more information or contact Joyce Huddleston (chairman) on 01235 524866.

The Club has an impressive archive of materials and maps about the Radley area in the past and the people who lived here. It is also building up a library of audio recordings of interviews with older residents telling their memories. See the Club website for details of these and its publications on various aspects of the history of Radley.

The Club celebrated its 20th Anniversary in May 2017.

Radley postcards


A series of five colour postcards

  • Buildings around Radley (Memorial Arch at Radley College, Radley Vicarage, Lower Farm House, Spinney’s Cottage)
  • Thrupp Lake, Radley
  • School pond, Radley
  • St James the Great, Radley
  • A reproduction of the Millennium Map


The postcards are on sale at Radley Village Shop for 60p or 5 for £2.50.


radley postcards 


Latest book from Radley History Club


Radley Manor and Village: a thousand year story

Available from Radley Village Shop, or order from the Club’s website at https://www.radleyhistoryclub.org.uk

This illuminating book tells the history of Radley’s manor and its relationship with the village from around the time of the Norman Conquest to the present day. 

It was researched and written by a group of Radley History Club members in collaboration with Radley College’s archivist. It includes:

  • 44 illustrations and maps, 17 in colour

  • evidence for the two ‘Radley Parks’

  • evidence from probate inventories 

  • Stonhouse and Bowyer family trees

£15.00 plus p/p

Radley Manor and Village: a thousand year story provides a detailed case study of the manorial system and how it flourished, evolved and eventually declined. An introductory first chapter sets out recurring themes, such as land ownership, and each chapter starts by reviewing the national context. Chapter 2 explains the manorial system and covers the period c.1050 to 1500 when Radley was part of the manor of Barton, held by Abingdon Abbey. During this period some villagers began to escape servility, acquiring larger land holdings and building durable homes. Chapter 3 takes us to 1560 by which time Radley was a manor in its own right, newly acquired by the Stonhouse family, aspiring gentry. They remained lords of the manor for over 200 years. Chapters 4, 5 and 6 look in detail at the family, their buildings and grounds in Radley, and their changing relationship with the village as land was enclosed. In the 1720s the Stonhouses commissioned William Townsend and Bartholomew Peisley to build Radley Hall (pictured), now part of Radley College. Chapter 7 covers the period 1795 to 1914, for most of which the Bowyer family held the manor. Following their eventual bankruptcy in 1889, most of their land was sold to Mrs Josephine Dockar-Drysdale and then to Radley College. Chapter 8 completes the story of Radley manor by taking us up to the present day and includes details from the lives of villagers David and Beryl Buckle.




Other books

  • The History of Radley, £2.00
  • The Story of a Village Church St James the Great, Radley, £5.00
  • Radley Farms and Families 1600-2011, £14.00
  • Radley People & the Railway 1843-2013, £10.00
  • Early Modern Radley: People, Land and Buildings, £12.00
  • Faith and Heraldry – The Stained Glass in the Church of St James the Great, Radley, £5.00
  • The Changing Boundaries of Radley and Sunningwell Parishes, £5.00
  • The History of Radley Primary School, £2.00

Postage and packing is extra. Please see the Club’s website for full details of its publications and how to buy online or order. All the books are also available from Radley Village Shop.

History of the railway at Radley

Christopher Parker (left) and Nicholas Lawrence (right) unveil the board describing the history of the railway line at Radley

Radley History Club celebrating 175 years of the Oxford to Didcot railway in June 2019
(click here to see further details about this event)

Part of the display of archive material about the railway at Radley

Display by children from Isis class at Radley Primary School

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