Oxfordshire: Local History Resources

The county of Oxfordshire is famous for the city of Oxford, which is home to Britain’s oldest university (established in AD1096), for the annual regatta on the River Thames at Henley, and for the picturesque villages dotted around the countryside.

Local History On Facebook

Sharing memories, photos and videos on a Facebook group is easy and allows a lot of people to participate. The Facebook groups set up for Oxfordshire local history matters include:

  • Tackley Local History Group

Local History Resources

In addition to the extensive list of UK national resources for local history, the following societies, archives and museums exist specifically to research and record the local history of Oxfordshire and its immediate neighbours:

  • Abingdon Area Archaeological & Historical Society
  • Abingdon County Hall Museum
  • Adderbury History Association
  • Ashbury Local History Society
  • Ashdown House
  • Ashmolean Museum
  • Aston History Group
  • Aston Martin Heritage Trust Museum
  • Banbury Historical Society
  • Banbury Museum
  • Bartons History Group
  • Bate Collection of Musical Instruments
  • Bensington Society (History Group)
  • Benson Veteran Cycle Museum
  • Bicester Local History Society
  • Blenheim Palace
  • Blewbury Local History Group
  • Bloxham Village History Club
  • Bloxham Village Museum
  • British Modern Military History Society
  • Broughton Castle
  • Buscot Park
  • Centre for Banburyshire Studies
  • Chalgrove Local History Group
  • Champs Chapel Museum of East Hendred
  • Charlbury Museum
  • Charlbury Society
  • Charney Bassett History Group
  • Chastleton House
  • (Chinnor Historical & Archaeological Society has now closed)
  • Chipping Norton History Society
  • Chipping Norton Museum
  • Christ Church Picture Gallery
  • Churchill & Sarsden Heritage Centre
  • Clanfield & Bampton Historical Society
  • Cogges Manor Farm Museum
  • Combe Mill
  • Cowley History Group
  • Cumnor & District History Society
  • Deddington & District History Society
  • Denchworth Local History Group
  • Didcot & District Archaeological & Historical Society
  • Didcot Railway Centre
  • Dorchester Abbey Museum
  • Dorchester Historical Society
  • Earth Trust Centre
  • Enstone Local History Society
  • Eynsham History Group
  • Finstock Local History Society
  • Friends of Tom Brown’s School Museum
  • Friends of the Vale & Downland Museum Centre
  • Goring Gap Local History Society
  • Great Haseley History Group
  • Greys Court
  • Hanney History Group
  • Harwell Parish History Group
  • Henley on Thames Archaeological & Historical Group
  • Hook Norton Brewery
  • Hook Norton Local History Group
  • Hornton History Group
  • Iffley History Society
  • Launton Historical Society
  • Littlemore Local History Society
  • Long Wittenham Local History Group
  • Longworth & District History Society
  • Lower Windrush Historical Society (formerly Standlake & District Historical Society)
  • Kelmscott Manor
  • Kennington History Society
  • Kidlington & District Historical Society
  • Kirtlington & Bletchingdon Historical Society
  • Mapledurham House
  • Mapledurham Watermill
  • Marcham Society
  • Middleton Cheney History Society
  • Minster Lovell History Club
  • Museum of the History of Science
  • Museum of Oxford
  • North Leigh History Group
  • Nuffield Place
  • Otmoor Archaeological & Historical Society
  • Oxford Bus Museum
  • Oxford Castle
  • Oxfordshire Buildings Record
  • Oxfordshire Family History Society
  • Oxfordshire Gardens Trust
  • Oxfordshire Health Archives
  • Oxfordshire History Centre (previously Oxfordshire Record Office)
  • The Oxfordshire Museum
  • Oxford University Museum of Natural History
  • Oxford University Press Museum
  • Pendon Museum
  • Pitt Rivers Museum
  • Radley History Club
  • Ralph Mann Archive, Kingham
  • Ramsden Parish Domesday Project
  • River and Rowing Museum
  • Science Oxford
  • Shrivenham Heritage Society
  • Sibfords Society
  • Soldiers of Oxfordshire Museum
  • Soldiers of Oxfordshire Trust (SOFO)
  • South Stoke Historical Society
  • Stanford in the Vale & District Local History Society
  • Steeple Aston Village Archive Trust
  • Stonor Park
  • The Story Museum
  • Stratton Audley Local History Society
  • Sutton Courtenay Local History Society
  • Swalcliffe Barn
  • Swinford Museum
  • Tackley Local History Group
  • Thame Historical Society
  • Thame Museum
  • Tolsey Museum
  • Tom Brown’s School Museum
  • Vale and Downland Museum
  • Vale of the White Horse Industrial Archaeology Group
  • Wallingford Historical & Archaeological Society
  • Wallingford Museum
  • Waterperry Gardens
  • Weston-on-the-Green Society
  • West Ox Arts
  • Wheatley Village Archive
  • Whitchurch & Goring Heath History Society
  • Williams F1 Grand Prix Collection
  • Witney and District Museum
  • Witney & District Museum & Historical Society
  • Wolvercote Local History Society
  • Wootton, Dry Sandford & District History Society
  • Wychwoods Local History Society

The Cities And Towns Of Oxfordshire

The world-famous city of Oxford is the only city located in Oxfordshire. But the county is also home to the following towns:

  • Abingdon-on-Thames
  • Banbury
  • Bicester
  • Burford
  • Carterton
  • Charlbury
  • Chipping Norton
  • Didcot
  • Henley-on-Thames
  • Thame
  • Wallingford
  • Watlington
  • Witney
  • Woodstock

In addition, there are dozens of villages and hamlets across the county, many of them famed for the historic and beautiful buildings they contain.

Where Is Oxfordshire?

Oxfordshire is a landlocked county in the region of South East England, which is sometimes classed as part of the ‘Home Counties’ area around London, despite being over an hour away from the capital city.

Oxfordshire shares borders with the following counties:

  • Warwickshire (to the north-west)
  • Northamptonshire (to the north-east)
  • Buckinghamshire (to the east)
  • Berkshire (to the south) 
  • Wiltshire (to the south-west) 
  • Gloucestershire (to the west)

Is Oxford the same as Oxfordshire?

Oxford is a city, while the county of Oxfordshire has an area of 1,006 square miles (or 2,606 square kilometres) containing Oxford and a large number of towns and villages for which Oxfordshire County Council provides local government services.

What does Oxfordshire mean?

The Anglo-Saxon settlers established a ford (a shallow river crossing) for oxen around AD900, and the term ‘scire’ described an official territory under a leader’s control.

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Thanks to Sara Price for use of the image shown at the top of this page.