History

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  • photo montage of various historical buildings and people from Abingdon

Abingdon Area Archaeological and Historical Society

These pages are intended as an on-line archive covering the most interesting buildings in Abingdon, the people who have lived in them through the centuries, and the businesses and other activities that were carried on in them.

These pages are intended as an on-line archive covering the most interesting buildings in Abingdon, the people who have lived in them through the centuries, and the businesses and other activities that were carried on in them. They are being built up gradually, and if you cannot find what you are looking for this may be because the entry has not yet been completed. Entries typically start with highlights sections intended for the general user, and then go into greater detail for those who would like to know more.

The pages are the responsibility of the Abingdon Buildings and People group, which is part of the Abingdon Area Archaeological and Historical Society, better known as the AAAHS.

We thank the Abingdon-on-Thames Town Council and the Choose Abingdon Partnership for inviting us to be part of their portal, the Oxfordshire Buildings Record for their cooperation and for access to their research, and numerous copyright holders who have permitted us to use their pictures or texts.  If we have inadvertently used any copyright material without permission, please let us know.

We welcome comments, criticisms, and suggestions. Especially, we welcome offers to contribute additional entries on buildings, families, and other relevant topics. You can contact us at abp@aaahs.org.uk.

For the history of the town see The Abingdon Story.

External websites

We give links to external websites where we think this will be helpful but we are not responsible for the content of these sites and we do not endorse any advertisements that appear on them.

Citation and copyright

If you wish to cite any of our material in your own published work we recommend the following format: Anon, Abingdon Buildings and People, page URL in full (accessed [date of access]). Please note that the AAAHS owns the copyright of these pages except where other copyright holders are acknowledged on photographs or articles. Pages or images should not be copied for publication without permission.

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Historic buildings of Abingdon

Abbey Gateway

Abbey Gateway, Abbey Close

The Gateway dates from the late fifteenth century and was the main entrance to Abingdon Abbey. A much-damaged statue of St.…
Old Abbey House

Old Abbey House, Abbey Close

Old Abbey House stands just within the precincts of the former Abingdon Abbey, facing the gateway between St Nicolas’ church…
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Maud Hales Terrace, Abingdon Bridge

Although officially in Culham rather than Abingdon, Maud Hales Terrace is passed by all who walk across the bridge to and…
Stratton House, 50 Bath Street, Abingdon

Stratton House, 50 Bath Street

Stratton House dominates the small square that closes Bath (formerly Boar) Street since it was divided by Stratton Way in…
Abingdon Bridge in 2013

Abingdon Bridge, Bridge Street

Abingdon Bridge was built in 1416 by local town initiative, not by the Abbey. A guild named the Fraternity of the Holy Cross…
The Old Gaol in 2008

Old Gaol, Bridge Street

The late eighteenth century was a period when prisons and prison building were prominent in public debate. Criminals could…
Former County Police Station in 2001. The Police Station is on the right.

Former County Police Station, Bridge Street

About to be remodelled at the time of writing as part of the Old Gaol development, the former County Police Station dominates…
The Crown & Thistle in 2012

The Crown & Thistle, Bridge Street

The Crown & Thistle is a multi-period courtyard inn, probably taking its name from the union of the crowns of Scotland…
The Guildhall in 2013, north side

Guildhall, Bridge Street and Abbey Close

The Guildhall is a complex set of buildings, now linked together. At its heart is the medieval L‑shaped Hospital of St…
The Checker in 1875

Checker, Abingdon Abbey, Checker Walk

The Checker dates from the 1260s and is one of the oldest of the surviving buildings of the great medieval abbey of Abingdon.…
The Long Gallery in 2010

Long Gallery, Abingdon Abbey, Checker Walk

The Long Gallery is one of the few surviving buildings of the great medieval abbey of Abingdon. Recent tree-ring dating has…
Unicorn Theatre in 2010 from the north

Unicorn Theatre, Abingdon Abbey, Checker Walk

The Unicorn Theatre is inside a multi-phase stone-built structure inserted lengthwise into a space between two earlier buildings,…
Trinity the Church from the North West

Trinity Church, Conduit Road

Trinity Church was built in 1873-5 as the new Wesleyan Methodist church. It is on Conduit Road, close to the junction with…
The King's Head and Bell

King’s Head and Bell, 10 East St Helen Street

There was an inn on this site before 1554 when it was noted in a survey as The Bell. Its status as a major inn in the Bury…
Twickenham House from the front

20 East St Helen Street, Twickenham House

This early Georgian building was built in 1756-7 for Joseph Tomkins.  The Tomkins were among the leading families of the…
26 and 26A East St Helen Street in 2010

26 and 26A East St Helen Street

No. 26 East St Helen Street is the most complete surviving medieval house in Abingdon. It was built in 1431 and had two jettied…
28 East St Helen Street in 2010

28 East St Helen Street, Unicorn House

No.28 is one of the largest and most impressive houses in East St Helen Street. A building on the plot was identified in…
30 East St Helen Street in 2010

30 East St Helen Street, St Ethelwold’s

Behind the elegant Georgian façade of No.30 there is a long sequence of building and adaptation to new requirements. Archaeologists…
55 East St Helen Street in 2008

55 East St Helen Street

No.55 with its neighbour No.51 are part of a timber framed row of rental properties built some time around 1500. They belonged…
60 East St Helen St, The Malthouse

60 East St Helen St, The Malthouse

The present building is largely a reconstruction of the early twentieth century by local architect Harry Redfern (1861-1950)…
Lion Hotel, Abingdon

The former Lion Hotel, High Street (largely demolished)

The former Lion Hotel, High Street (largely demolished)In its heyday this popular establishment in High Street was formed…
The County Hall in 2013

County Hall, Market Place

This “exceedingly handsome” building – as John Betjeman described it – was erected between 1678 and 1683, primarily…
St Nicolas Church

St Nicolas’ Church, Market Place

This church, which stands near the Market Place, is one of the few remaining buildings from the great Benedictine Abbey of…
12 Ock Street

12 Ock Street

The house at 12 Ock Street Is a timber-framed building that has been dated to the late fifteenth century, although it has…
The courtyard and clock tower to the east of the house in 2007

22-28 Ock Street, The Clock House

The Tomkins family were wealthy maltsters during the eighteenth century and built Abingdon’s three grandest houses, Stratton…
The Baptist Church in 2013

Baptist Church, 35 Ock Street

The Abingdon Baptist community dates from 1650, but it was not until 1700 that a dedicated chapel or meeting house could…
35 Ock Street, The Old Manse, in 2013. It is now a Church Centre.

35 Ock Street

In the late seventeenth century, many properties in this area were owned by Benjamin Tomkins, a wealthy Baptist. Some time…
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Tomkins Almshouses, Ock Street

Benjamin Tomkins was a rich maltster in Abingdon and a staunch Baptist. In 1732 he left £1600 in his will as the endowment…
54 Ock Street in 2013

54 Ock Street

From 1937 to 2008, 54 Ock Street and the subsidiary buildings behind it housed the printing works of Leach’s the Printers.…
St Michael's from the north-west in 2013

St Michael and All Angels Church, Park Road

St Michael’s was built in 1864-7 on Park Road, just south of the newly-created Albert Park. Christ’s Hospital, which…
The rear façade of Brick Alley on St Helen’s Wharf and facing the river

Brick Alley Almshouses, St Helen’s Churchyard

For unfamiliar words, phrases or technical terms please see the glossary. Brick Alley is the name of the almshouses facing…
Long Alley Front View

Long Alley Almshouses, St Helen’s Churchyard

The Long Alley almshouse is an elegant building, still in use for its original purpose. But it also has great significance…
Twitty's Almshouses

Twitty’s Almshouses, St Helen’s Churchyard

Charles Twitty was an Abingdon man who moved to London and became rich during a long career as a senior official in the Exchequer.…
Organ Blowing Chamber 1

Organ Blowing Chamber, St Helen’s Churchyard

The organ blowing chamber in St Helen’s churchyard, Abingdon, is an excellent example of a little-known building type.…
The Old Anchor in 2010, with part of the new almshouses just visible on the left.

The Old Anchor, St Helen’s Wharf

The Old Anchor Inn on its present site can be dated to precisely 30 August 1884 when its license was first granted. Prior…
St Helen's

St Helen’s Church, St Helen’s Wharf

St Helen’s has always been Abingdon’s principal church. It is remarkable for its shape, being much wider than it is long,…
Barton Court - ruins from the south in 2016

Barton Court (remains of) Sherwood Avenue

Hidden away in a modern housing estate just outside the town centre is the ruin of Barton (often referred to as Barton Court). The…
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2 and 3 The Square

The north-east corner of The Square currently has two buildings: Barclay’s Bank at No. 2 and, to its east at No. 3, a spectacular…
The Congregational Chapel in 2013

Former Congregational Church, The Square

This self-confident, classical-fronted building on The Square is the former Congregational Church. It marked the prominence…
3 Stert Street in 2012

3 Stert Street

This house stands on the east side of the street and next door but one to St Nicolas' Church. It is a double-fronted, timber-framed…
The Knowl from south

The Knowl, 52 Stert Street

This striking house is even more complex than it appears. It is broadly T-shaped in plan, with the leg of the T having a…
48 West St Helen Street in 2012

48 West St Helen Street

No.48 is one of the few surviving early houses in West St Helen Street. It is timber-framed, and jettied at first and second…

Streets & Places of Abingdon

East St Helen Street in 2012 from the County Hall Roof

East St Helen Street

This street is one of the earliest in Abingdon. Roman remains have been found below ground at a number of houses. Running…
Ock Street Fair

Ock Street

Ock Street may have first become an important route west out of Abingdon in about 975 when Abingdon Abbey acquired Marcham…
Stert Street Roofs

Stert Street

Stert Street is named after the River Stert, a small watercourse which flows through a culvert under its east pavement, but…
Detail from the Abingdon Missal of 1461. Picture of a church.

Places – Abingdon Abbey

Abingdon Abbey was probably founded in the late seventh century, but its great days started when it was re-founded by Bishop…
Fitzharris Manor – a gentleman’s residence, c. 1874

Places – Fitzharris Estate

Fitzharris Manor was just to the north of the historic centre of Abingdon. It was surrounded by ornamental grounds and paddocks,…
Regal Close from The Square in 2013

Places – Regal Close

Regal Close is a residential development which was built and first occupied in 2004.  It stands on the site of the Lamb,…
The north-east corner of St Helen’s Churchyard in 2013.

Places – St Helen’s churchyard

The parish church of St Helen, its churchyard and the three sets of almshouses which surround it lie close to the Thames,…

Historic people of Abingdon

W. Ackling & Sons in the 1920s at what is now (2015) 44 Bath Street, Abingdon, Oxfordshire

The Ackling Family

Our grandfather, William Ackling, was well known in Abingdon from the 1890s to the 1940s as the proprietor of the ironmonger’s…
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Aelfric of Abingdon

Aelfric of Abingdon, future Archbishop of Canterbury, started his career as a monk of Abingdon Abbey. It was a time when…
A Bishop, believed to be Aethelwold, giving a blessing

St Aethelwold

Aethelwold, Abbot of Abingdon from 954 to 963 and thereafter Bishop of Winchester, was one of the three men who brought England…
John Alder, the lucky cooper from Abingdon, holding his winning lottery ticket

John Alder – ‘the lucky cooper’

On the front of No 39 Stert Street – Mason the draper’s – there is a blue plaque commemorating the achievement of one…
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Roger Amyce

Roger Amyce was a man of importance in Abingdon in the mid-sixteenth century. In 1547, as a middle-ranking civil servant,…
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George Argyle and the beginnings of the Argyle Dairy

The Argyle family have lived in the Abingdon area for a long time. In 1775 Richard Argyle of nearby Sutton Wick married Ann…
Agnes Baker with Arthur Preston at Whitefield in 1927

Agnes Baker

Agnes Charlotte Baker is one of Abingdon’s foremost historians. For twenty years she worked with Arthur Preston to extract…
Barrett shop 1984 cropped

The Beesley and Barrett families

From 1883 until 2001 the clothing business of Beesley's was a respected family firm serving Abingdon and the surrounding…
James Bertie, Earl of Abingdon, by Sir Geoffrey Kneller

James Bertie, 1st Earl of Abingdon

James Bertie, who would be the first Earl of Abingdon, was born in 1653. He was a younger son of the second Earl of Lindsey,…
Willoughby Bertie (seated) as a composer.

Willoughby Bertie, 4th Earl of Abingdon

Willoughby Bertie became fourth Earl of Abingdon on the death of his father, also Willoughby, in 1760 and was made High Steward…
The Blacknall monument in St Nicolas Church

The Blacknall family

The sixteenth century was a period of economic upheaval which provided great opportunities to the able and ambitious. The…
William Bostock by Sampson Strong

The Bostock family

The Bostocks were a prominent Abingdon family in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. They are believed to have originated…
Sir George Bowyer  (Cartoon by ‘Spy’)

Sir George Bowyer

At the intersection of the Oxford and Radley roads in Abingdon is a group of buildings – church, cloister, presbytery,…
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The Braunche family

The Braunches were a leading family in Abingdon through several generations. A John Branch (d. 1488) worked from 1438 as…
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Mary Buckland, nee Morland

Mary Morland exemplifies the limited possibilities of a woman of her time to make a career in scientific research. She was…
Agnes Leonora Challenor

Agnes Leonora Challenor

Agnes Leonora Challenor, née Duncan, was born in Wales on 19 March 1882, the eldest of eight children. Her parents were…
John Creemer Clarke

John Creemer Clarke

Although he came to play a significant role in many aspects of Abingdon life, John Creemer Clarke was not a native of the…
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James Macdonald Cobban

James Cobban was headmaster of Abingdon School from 1947 to 1970. He is credited with transforming the school from the rather…
Oswald Couldrey

Oswald Couldrey

Oswald Jennings Couldrey is Abingdon’s best-known twentieth-century artist. He was born into a local family of seed merchants…
Charlotte Cox, a Crimean War nurse from Abingdon, when she was in her mid-seventies

Charlotte Cox

Charlotte Cox was one of the 229 women whose names are on the Register of Nurses sent to the Military Hospitals in the East…
Mieneke - USE THIS VERSION - ed jb 8mar14 - from Elizabeth 7mar14 taken by Elizabeth in 1996

Mieneke Cox

Mieneke Cox was a much loved and highly respected local historian of Abingdon.  She was born Jacomina Elsje Elias in Nijmegen…
Nathaniel Dodson as a young man.

Nathaniel Dodson

Nathaniel Dodson, who was vicar of St Helen’s for over forty years, was born in 1787 into a clerical family based in Sussex.…
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Thomas Duffield

Thomas Duffield, Abingdon’s MP from 1832 to 1844, was born in 1782 at Syston, Lincolnshire, second son of Michael Duffield.…
St Edmund with infant (Chaource, France)

St Edmund of Abingdon

Edmund of Abingdon, the future scholar, archbishop and saint, was born in about 1175, probably in West St Helen Street, where…
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Faricius (Faritius)

Faricius was one of the two greatest abbots of Abingdon Abbey. Aethelwold, a century and a half before him, was the other. Faricius…
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Henry Forty

Henry Forty, preacher and occasional religious writer, was the first professional minister to lead the Abingdon Baptist community…
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Sir Ralph Glyn

Ralph George Campbell Glyn was probably Abingdon’s longest serving MP, holding the seat from 1924 to 1953. He was born…
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Simon Harcourt, 1st Viscount Harcourt

Simon Harcourt was of a gentry family whose seat was at Stanton Harcourt. He was educated at a dissenting academy at Shilton,…
Sir John Holt, by Philipp Audinet, after van Bleek

Sir John Holt

Sir John Holt, the greatest English lawyer of his age, was chief justice of the court of King’s Bench from 1689 until his…
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Sir Thomas Holt

Thomas Holt, lawyer, was born about 1616 at Stoke in Oxfordshire and educated at Magdalen Hall in Oxford. About 1640, he…
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Robert Jennings

It is not every schoolmaster who can retire to great wealth and a landed estate, but Robert Jennings, Master of Abingdon…
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George Knapp

The Knapps were a large but close-knit family originating in Chilton, a village between Abingdon and Newbury, where many…
William Knollys

William Knollys

The Knollys family, based at Rotherfield Greys near Henley, were pre-eminent in Berkshire and Oxfordshire through much of…
Gabrielle Lambrick

Gabrielle Lambrick

Gabrielle Lambrick (née Jennings) was born in south London, her father a hospital administrator and amateur art connoisseur…
The Langfords' shop in Stert Street

The Langfords

The Langfords, from the mid−nineteenth to the late twentieth century, are an example of an entrepreneurial family that…
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Henry Langley

Henry Langley was born in 1610, the son of an Abingdon shoemaker. He attended Abingdon School, and matriculated at Pembroke…
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Francis Little

Francis Little, or Brooke, for he used both names interchangeably, was one of the most significant figures in Abingdon’s…
Albert Lock in about 1916 in Royal Flying Corps uniform

Albert Edward Lock

Albert Lock spent much of his adult life living in Abingdon where he was a well-known figure and is still remembered by some…
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Edward Loveden Loveden

Edward Loveden Loveden was a regional magnate, economically powerful and politically influential throughout north Berkshire…
Archie Kirkman Loyd with his son Geoff, in about 1908. The boy would be killed in the First World War.Reproduced by permission of the Provost and Fellows of Eton College

Archie Kirkman Loyd

Archie Kirkman Loyd was twice MP for the Abingdon Division of Berkshire, from 1895 to 1905 and from 1916 to 1918. Born in…
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John Maberly

John Maberly, Abingdon’s MP from 1818 to 1832, was an entrepreneur and a businessman before he became a politician. Born…
Sir John Mason

Sir John Mason

John Mason was an important patron of Abingdon in its transition from a property of the abbey to a chartered borough under…
The former Matthews seed shop backing on to the Old Gaol

The Matthews Family

The Matthews family has been prominent in Abingdon business and communal affairs, for more than a hundred years. In the…
Painting of the former Lion Hotel on High Street Abingdon, Oxfordshire, in 1931

The Mayhead family and the Lion Hotel

My grandfather, Basil Mayhead, was the last owner of the Lion Hotel on the north side of the High Street before it was sold…
Richard Mayott

The Mayott family

The Mayotts were a leading family in Abingdon for more than two hundred years. Roger Mayott arrived from Horton in Staffordshire…
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Thomas Medlycott

Thomas Medlycott was recorder of Abingdon, 1675-86 and 1687-9. He had been born in London in 1628, son of James Medlicott…
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Thomas Theophilus Metcalfe

Thomas Theophilus Metcalfe, Abingdon’s MP from 1796 to 1807, was an excellent example of what at the time were called nabobs.…
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Benjamin Morland

Benjamin Morland was an Abingdon solicitor who has left an enduring memorial in the Old Gaol, which was built probably at…
George Bowes Morland

George Bowes Morland

George Bowes Morland was a prominent citizen of Abingdon, and active in the affairs both of the town and of the county of…
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John Morton

John Morton was Abingdon’s MP from 1747 until 1770 and its recorder from 1753 until his death in 1780. Like several of…
Airey Neave at the the Nuremberg trials

Airey Neave

Airey Neave was the last but one MP for the Berkshire county constituency of Abingdon which was abolished in 1983. Neave…
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John Thomas Norris

John Thomas Norris was Abingdon’s MP from 1857 until 1865. He was particularly helpful to the town in opposing the threatened…
Father John Paul O’Toole

Father John Paul O’Toole

At the intersection of the Oxford and Radley roads in Abingdon is a group of buildings – church, cloister, presbytery,…
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Arthur Charles Hyde Parker

Arthur Charles Hyde Parker was a prominent and well-respected Abingdon resident. He worked for the Morland Brewery as a chemical…
Richard Parsons’ bookshop and reading room at 1 Bridge Street before about 1852.

Richard Parsons

Standing on the steps of the County Hall looking towards St Nicholas’s Church today, it is easy to imagine that the grand…
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John Pendarves

John Pendarves, minister of religion, was a Cornishman, born in 1623. He took his BA degree in Oxford just as the Civil War…
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The Peyman family – stonemasons and builders

The Peyman family lived in Abingdon throughout the nineteenth century and were an established family of stonemasons, builders,…
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The Pleydells

On 10 June 1689 both Harim Pleydell of The Corner House, Ock Street and his third cousin, the Revd Richard Pleydell MA, Headmaster…
Bruno Pontecorvo in Russia, 1955

Bruno Pontecorvo

The unassuming semi-detached house at 5 Letcombe Avenue was a centre of world-wide attention in October 1950. It was the…
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Elizabeth Poole

The Abingdon prophetess Elizabeth Poole was – almost certainly – born in the London parish of St Gregory by St Paul…
Arthur E Preston in mayoral regalia, c.1912

Arthur Edwin Preston

Arthur Preston was a prosperous chartered accountant who lived in Abingdon for most of his life. He served the Borough Council…
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Harry Redfern

Henry Redfern – always known as Harry – was an important Edwardian architect with strong Abingdon associations. He was…
The Abingdon Market Cross, by Sampson Strong, about 1605

John Richardson

John Richardson was Abingdon’s serjeant-at-mace from 1628 until his death in 1663. His functions included escorting the…
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Thomas Richardson

Thomas Richardson was a prominent Abingdon townsman. He built up a grocery business serving the town and the surrounding…
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Oliver Sansom

Oliver Sansom, leader of the Quakers in the Vale of White Horse, was born in 1636 in Beedon but of a family based in Charney…
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John Sant

John Sant was one of the few abbots of Abingdon whose career path led beyond the confines of the Abbey. He became abbot in…
Thomas Skurray

Thomas Skurray

Born in Faringdon in 1868, Thomas Skurray was educated at King Alfred’s School in Wantage and Reading School, going on…
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Richard Smyth (or Smith)

Richard Smyth (sometimes spelt Smith), Abingdon’s mayor in 1564, was owed favours by some very powerful people. He first…
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John Francis Spenlove

John Francis Spenlove, Abingdon brewer and politician, was born on 27 March 1769 in Cornhill, London, the son of Francis…
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Edward Stennet

With Edward Stennett, Abingdon can claim to have been at the origin of a new religious denomination. Many things are uncertain…
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The Stonehouse/Stonhouse family

The Stonhouse family – as they are now known – of Radley were influential and at times politically powerful in and around…
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William Alder Strange

William Alder Strange, headmaster of Abingdon School, was a great-nephew of John Alder, ‘the lucky cooper’, whose lottery…
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Sampson Strong

Sampson Strong was the painter who was responsible for many of the portraits which to this day adorn the hall of the Long…
Thomas Tesdale by John Taylor

The Tesdale family

The history of Abingdon before the twentieth century is largely a story of family dynasties which rose and declined, cooperated…
Frederick Thesiger, 1st Baron Chelmsford, in 1859 in his robes as Lord Chancellor. The portrait is by EU Eddis and hangs in the Guildhall in Abingdon, Oxfordshire.

Frederick Thesiger, 1st Baron Chelmsford

Frederick Thesiger was the most distinguished of Abingdon’s nineteenth century MPs, rising to the position of Lord Chancellor.…
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William Tiptaft

William Tiptaft, founder of the Abbey Baptist Church in Checker Walk, was born in 1803 near Oakham, Rutland, into a moderately…
Benjamin Tomkins (c.1663-1732) showing off his wealth

The Tomkins Family

The Tomkins were a large family who were particularly prominent in Abingdon from the mid-seventeenth to the late nineteenth…
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Thomas Trapham

Thomas Trapham was born in Maidstone. He probably came to Abingdon in about 1630 after marrying a member of the locally prominent…
Geoffrey Trease

Geoffrey Trease

Geoffrey Trease was one of the most prolific authors of his time with no fewer than 113 books and several plays to his name.…
Mary Verney by van Dyck

Mary Verney nee Blacknall

William Blacknall came to Abingdon in the mid-sixteenth century and made a fortune in local industries, operating corn and…
William Watkin WAITE (1778-1856)

William Watkin Waite

W W Waite was an Abingdon artist of the Regency period. Apart from a period of apprenticeship in London as a very young man…
William W. Wardell

William Wilkinson Wardell

At the intersection of the Oxford and Radley roads in Abingdon is a group of buildings – church, cloister, presbytery,…
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John Wellesbourne

(Note that there are numerous spellings of Wellesbourne's name) When, in February 1538, Henry VIII’s ministers dissolved…
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John George Timothy West

John George Timothy West – known informally as Timothy West and professionally as JGT West – was a well-known local architect…
Ronald Harry Williams

Ronald Harry Williams

Ronald Harry Williams (1909 – 1993), always known as Ron, was a well-known Abingdon tradesman. He was educated at Culham…
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The Williams Family

Abingdon, now in Oxfordshire, but in Berkshire until 1974, was where many of the Williams family lived, worked and died throughout…
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George Winship

George Winship was Abingdon's Inspector of Nuisances and Borough Surveyor for forty-one years and brought Abingdon into the…
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William Thomas Garrett Woodforde

William Woodforde, the first Medical Officer of Health (MOH) for the Berkshire Combined Sanitary District, which covered…

Feature Articles

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Historic Ironwork

This article is concerned with ironwork in the public domain that can reliably be assigned to a date before 1900; it is also…

The Abingdon Morris Tradition 1918 to 2018

In the previous article the story was told of how the Abingdon traditions of morris dancing and electing a Mayor of Ock Street,…
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The Russian Gun

The Russian Cannon in Albert Park in about 1900 with Trinity Church in the background. © From a privately owned Valentine’s…
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Abingdon Morris Dancing and the Mayor of Ock Street before 1914

Summary Abingdon is one of the few towns in the south of England that has an ongoing tradition of morris dancing dating…
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Abingdon Airfield

RAF ABINGDON  For sixty years, from 1932 to 1992, Abingdon Airfield was an important RAF base. Often such installations…
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Abingdon’s Water Supply

Summary Abingdon managed with very local water supplies until 1880, utilising its springs, wells and streams and the rivers…
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Abingdon’s Waterworks

Introduction Abingdon’s water supply in the 1870s was becoming increasingly inadequate as the town’s requirements…
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The Bear Club of Abingdon

In the eighteenth century, a number of prominent people in Abingdon decided to create a club with the object of enjoyment,…
brewery_ca_1912_photoshopped_0.jpg(Photo courtesy of Stephen Skurray)

The Morland Brewery

This is an abridged version of the article by Bill Mellor first published in Aspects of Abingdon’s Past (St Nicolas…
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Abingdon’s Boundaries

Land boundaries are of many types – each created for a different purpose, such as ownership, taxation, ecclesiastical control,…
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The River Stert culvert in Abingdon

Summary The River Stert runs under Abingdon through a culvert – a multi-phase structure in stone and brick, with some…
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Abingdon’s gas engines

For most of the first half of the twentieth century, Abingdon’s water supply relied on two gas engines and a pump situated…
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The Archaeology of Abingdon

Coin image © Ashmolean Museum, University of Oxford The Abingdon area was attractive to human settlers from the earliest…
The Abingdon Waterturnpike Murder

The Abingdon Waterturnpike Murder

Photo by Mark Johnstone Davies, used by courtesy of the Enviromment Agency Summary In 1787 an elderly  man, walking…
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Abingdon at War, 1642-1646

Summary The Civil War was the great British calamity of the seventeenth century.  Between 1642 and 1651, a greater proportion…
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