Berkshire: Local History Resources

Berkshire is a county in the region of the South East of England.

Along with other counties surrounding London, including Buckinghamshire, Essex, Hertfordshire, Kent, Surrey, and Sussex, Berkshire is considered part of the Home Counties. This term first appeared after an Act of Parliament in 1889 created the County of London as a separate and distinct administrative region.

Berkshire is home to The Ankerwycke Yew, which is England’s oldest tree.

Page Contents:

What Is Berkshire Famous For?

Berkshire is famous for being home to Windsor Castle and Eton, numerous forests and ancient woodlands, and both the Berkshire Golf Club and the racecourse at Ascot.

The University of Reading, the nearby University of West London, Berkshire Institute for Health, and the Berkshire College of Agriculture in Maidenhead educate tens of thousands of students between them each year.

Berkshire Pig is a breed of pig well known for tender, juicy meat. Whilst they originated in Berkshire, today they are raised in different parts of the world. Sometimes they are called Kurobuta pigs.

The city of Oxford is not in Berkshire but located in the nearby county of Oxfordshire.

How Wealthy Is Berkshire?

Many residents commute from Berkshire to London for work, especially on the train. In addition, many national and international businesses have their Head Office in the county. It means employment and the average household income is high when compared to other parts of the UK.

Berkshire was the 9th wealthiest county in England in 2013 using the Gross value added (GVA) measure, according to data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS). The total amount was equivalent to the country of Jordan. When divided by the number of people living in the area, the county had the third highest GVA per resident in England.

What areas are in Berkshire?

Since Berkshire County Council was abolished in March 1998, the county has been divided into six areas, each with a unitary authority:

  • Bracknell Forest
  • Reading
  • Slough
  • West Berkshire
  • Windsor and Maidenhead
  • Wokingham

Towns and Villages in Berkshire

There are no cities in the English county of Berkshire. 

There are 12 towns in Berkshire:

  • Ascot
  • Bracknell
  • Crowthorne
  • Earley
  • Eton
  • Hungerford
  • Maidenhead
  • Newbury
  • Reading
  • Sandhurst
  • Slough
  • Thatcham

The villages of Berkshire include:

  • Aldermaston
  • Aldworth
  • Arborfield and Newland
  • Ashampstead
  • Barkham
  • Basildon
  • Beech Hill
  • Beedon
  • Beenham
  • Binfield
  • Bisham
  • Boxford
  • Bradfield
  • Bray
  • Brightwalton
  • Brimpton
  • Bucklebury
  • Burghfield
  • Catmore
  • Chaddleworth
  • Charvil
  • Chieveley
  • Cold Ash
  • Combe
  • Compton
  • Cookham
  • Cox Green
  • Datchet
  • Earley
  • East Garston
  • East Ilsley
  • Enborne
  • Englefield
  • Farnborough
  • Fawley
  • Finchampstead
  • Frilsham
  • Great Shefford
  • Greenham
  • Hampstead Norreys
  • Hamstead Marshall
  • Hermitage
  • Highclere
  • Holybrook
  • Horton
  • Hungerford
  • Hurley
  • Inkpen
  • Kintbury
  • Lambourn
  • Leckhampstead
  • Midgham
  • Newbury
  • Old Windsor
  • Padworth
  • Pangbourne
  • Peasemore
  • Purley on Thames
  • Remenham
  • Ruscombe
  • Shaw cum Donnington
  • Shinfield
  • Shottesbrooke
  • Sonning
  • Speen
  • St. Nicholas, Hurst
  • Stanford Dingley
  • Stratfield Mortimer
  • Streatley
  • Sulham
  • Sulhamstead
  • Sunningdale
  • Sunninghill and Ascot
  • Swallowfield
  • Thatcham
  • Theale
  • Tidmarsh with Sulham
  • Tilehurst
  • Twyford
  • Ufton Nervet
  • Waltham St. Lawrence
  • Warfield
  • Wargrave
  • Wasing
  • Welford
  • West Ilsley
  • West Woodhay
  • White Waltham
  • Winkfield
  • Winnersh
  • Winterbourne
  • Wokefield
  • Wokingham Without
  • Woolhampton
  • Wraysbury
  • Yattendon

Local History Videos Of Berkshire

In the lists of towns and villages above, you’ll notice some of them are highlighted. You can click through to a page dedicated to that community, showing links to videos about that place in the past.

I’ll keep updating this list as I create new pages, but please have patience as there’s a lot to do!

Local History Facebook Pages And Groups

Facebook pages and groups can be a great place to find old photos about the community you are interested in, and see the valuable comments and observations people make.

Facebook pages and groups about Berkshire:

  • Thatcham Historical Society
  • Windsor Local History

Berkshire Local History Societies And Resources

Whether you are interested in the local history of Berkshire or want to find out more information about your family history, there is a lot of information available.

Berkshire Archaeological Society

Berkshire Archaeology Research Group

Berkshire Industrial Archaeological Group

Berkshire Local History Association

Berkshire Record Office (BRO)

Berkshire Record Society

Berkshire Family History Society

Bracknell & District Historical Society

Cox Green Local History Group

Datchet Village Society

East Ilsley Local History Society

Eton Wick History Group

Faringdon & District Archaeological & Historical Society

The Finchampstead Society

Friends of Reading Museums

Friends of West Berkshire Museum

Friends of the Windsor & Royal Borough Museum

Goring Gap Local History Society

Goring & Streatley Local History Society

History of Reading Society, The

Hungerford Historical Association

Kennet Valley At War Trust

Maidenhead Archaeological & Historical Society

Maidenhead Heritage Centre & Trust

Middle Thames Archaeological & Historical Society

Mortimer Local History Group

Newbury Town Council

Newbury District Field Club

Newbury Geological Study Group

Project Purley

Radley History Club (formerly in Berkshire, now in Oxfordshire)

Sandhurst Historical Society

Shinfield & District Local History Society

Swallowfield Local History Society

Thatcham Historical Society

Theale Local History Society

Twyford & Ruscombe Local History Society

Wargrave Local History Society

West Berkshire Heritage

West Berkshire Heritage Forum

Windsor Local History Group

Wokingham History Group

Other Local History Resources

In addition, there are many national resources (enough to justify their own page!) which could help your local history research.

Back to Home page.

Thanks to Dave Francis on Unsplash for the photo at the top of this page.