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.
- What Is Berkshire Famous For?
- How Wealthy Is Berkshire?
- What areas are in Berkshire?
- Towns and Villages in Berkshire
- Local History Videos Of Berkshire
- Local History Facebook Pages And Groups
- Berkshire Local History Societies And Resources
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
- West Berkshire
- Windsor and Maidenhead
Towns and Villages in Berkshire
There are no cities in the English county of Berkshire.
There are 12 towns in Berkshire:
The villages of Berkshire include:
- Arborfield and Newland
- Beech Hill
- Cold Ash
- Cox Green
- East Garston
- East Ilsley
- Great Shefford
- Hampstead Norreys
- Hamstead Marshall
- Long Wittenham
- Old Windsor
- Purley on Thames
- Shaw cum Donnington
- St. Nicholas, Hurst
- Stanford Dingley
- Stratfield Mortimer
- Sunninghill and Ascot
- Tidmarsh with Sulham
- Ufton Nervet
- Waltham St. Lawrence
- West Ilsley
- West Woodhay
- White Waltham
- Wokingham Without
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
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.
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Thanks to Dave Francis on Unsplash for the photo at the top of this page.