Radley, a village and a parish in Berks. The village stands adjacent to the G.W.R., on which it has a station, near the river Thames, 2½ miles NE of Abingdon, and 4½ S from Oxford. It has a post and telegraph office under Abingdon; money order office, Abingdon. The civil parish includes also the liberty of Thrupp and Wick, and part of the township of Kennington. Acreage, 2991; population of tha civil parish, 733; of the ecclesiastical, 574. Kennington was separated ecclesiastically in 1866. There is a parish, council consisting of six members. The manor belonged to Abingdon Abbey; went, after The dissolution, to Mr G. Stonehouse; passed in 1792 to Captain, afterwards Admiral, Bowyer; and belongs now to the Drysdale family. Wick Hall is a chief residence. The living is a vicarage in the diocess of Oxford; net value, £75. The church is a building of stone in the Perpendicular style, consisting of chancel, nave, S transept, S aisle, and an embattled western tower, and contains an alabaster altar-tomb of Sir W. and Lady Stonehouse. St Peter's College is a large Church of England school for the upper classes; was founded in 1847; and includes dormitories, schoolrooms, infirmary, gymnasium, cricket and football grounds, and a bathing-place on the river. It possesses some useful scholarships, and has usually from 150 to 200 scholars.
The following is a list of the administrative units in which this place was either wholly or partly included.
|Ecclesiastical parish||Radley St. James|
|Poor Law union||Abingdon|
Any dates in this table should be used as a guide only.
The register dates from the year 1599, and contains several entries of the burials of soldiers who served in the Parliamentary and Royalist armies.
Church of England
St. James (parish church)
The church of St. James is a building of stone, wholly in the Perpendicular style, consisting of chancel, nave of three bays, south transept, south aisle, modern south porch of wood and an embattled western tower containing 6 bells: the south aisle and chancel are both embattled; the latter has two pinnacles: against the south wall of the chancel is a handsome monument to Sir William Stonhouse bart. who died 5th February, 1631, and Elizabeth (Powell), his wife, with effigies of both, carved in alabaster and coloured, smaller effigies of their children being placed at the sides; the Latin inscription was written by Alexander Gill D.D. head master of St. Paul's school, London, the tutor and friend of the poet Milton; a Norman font, discovered on a neighbouring farm, was restored to the church in 1840: a reredos was erected in 1909, in memory of the Rev. Arthur W. Malim, priest in charge of this parish 1886-7, by his wife Joan: an avenue of limes leads to the west doorway in the tower: the churchyard contains some good altar tombs, and a large yew tree on the north side: the late Sir George Bowyer bart. who died 7th June, 1883, is buried in a vault in the church: the church was thoroughly restored in 1902, at a cost of over £1,500, when the timber roofs were again exposed, the transept partly rebuilt, and the interior restored, and there are now 150 sittings.
Radley was in Abingdon Registration District from 1837 to 1974
Directories & Gazetteers
We have transcribed the entry for Radley from the following:
- Samuel Lewis' A Topographical Dictionary of England, 1848 (Radley (St. James))
- Kelly's Directory of Berkshire, 1915
Land and Property
The manor belonged to the abbot and convent of Abingdon, and after the Dissolution was purchased by George Stonhouse esq. of the Board of Green Cloth in the reign of Elizabeth: in 1792 the manor passed by will to Captain, afterwards Admiral Bowyer, brother of Sir William Bowyer bart. of Denham, Bucks, and created a baronet 8th. Sept. 1794, during the lifetime of his brother, as Sir George Bowyer, of Radley, Berks, for his gallantry in the victory achieved by Lord Howe on the 1st June, 1794, when he commanded as rear-admiral, and lost a leg; he eventually succeeded to his brother's baronetcy in April, 1799, and died 6th December, 1799; his son, Sir George Bowyer, 6th bart., of Radley and of Denham, succeeded, and the property next descended to his son, the late Sir George Bowyer bart. D.C.L. on whose death (7th June, 1883) both baronetcies passed to his next brother, Sir William Bowyer bart. of Brighton, who died May, 1893, and was succeeded by his nephew, Sir George Henry Bowyer bart. who in 1901 disposed of the manors of Radley and Sugworth to Mrs. Dockar-Drysdale.
The Return of Owners of Land in 1873 for Berkshire is available to browse.
Online maps of Radley are available from a number of sites:
- Bing (Current Ordnance Survey maps).
- Google Streetview.
- National Library of Scotland. (Old maps)
- old-maps.co.uk (Old Ordnance Survey maps to buy).
- Streetmap.co.uk (Current Ordnance Survey maps).
- A Vision of Britain through Time. (Old maps)
Newspapers and Periodicals
The British Newspaper Archive have fully searchable digitised copies of the following Berkshire papers online:
The St Peter's College Radley Register, 1847-1933 is available to browse online. It provides a listing of all boys who attended St Peter's College between those dates, including brief biographical details and scholastic achievements.
Villages, Hamlets, &cThrupp and Wick
The Visitations of Berkshire 1532, 1566, and 1665-6 is available online.