Front cover of the Radley History Club book, 'The Story of a Village Church: St James the Great, Radley'

The Story of a Village Church: St James the Great, Radley

Contributors: Richard Dudding, Rita and Brian Ford, Felicity Henderson, Joyce Huddleston, Pam McKellen, Tony Rogerson and Christine Wootton
Editor: Joyce Huddleston
Published October 2016
ISBN 978-0-9568632-4-9
184 pages
£5.00 plus £3.00 p/p for UK delivery (total £8.00) REDUCED PRICE

For 700 years and more, a church has stood on the rising ground overlooking the village of Radley – once in Berkshire and now in Oxfordshire. Beside it stands probably the oldest vicarage still in use in the country. This book tells the story of the church, the people who have been associated with it, and the social, religious and political changes it reveals. In seven carefully researched chapters – each written by a member of Radley History Club – you can find out about the church’s origins, and the question of whether a north aisle was destroyed in the Civil War. You can take a tour of the interior and the churchyard. You can learn about the church’s benefactors, sources of income, and charitable work over the centuries; about the relationship with Abingdon Abbey and local landowners; about the clergy who have served there; and the work of ordinary lay people today. More than a hundred photographs and illustrations enrich this fascinating account, which sheds new light on the church and community of a small rural village.

The research for this book complements the Club’s earlier study of Radley Vicarage in 2004 with Oxfordshire Buildings Record and extended the brief history of the Church given in the now out-of-print Radley Church and Parish first published in 2007. Details of the Church’s stained glass windows are given in Faith and Heraldry published in 2011.

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Chapter 1: Introduction
Chapter 2: Origins and Buildings
Chapter 3: The Interior of Radley Church
Chapter 4: Churchyard and Cemeteries
Chapter 5: The Clergy of St James the Great, Radley
Chapter 6: Tithes, Accounts and Charitable Giving
Chapter 7: The Church Today and the Role of the Laity
Appendix 1: Timeline of Radley Church
Appendix 2: Simplified Stonhouse and Bowyer family tree
Appendix 3: List of incumbents from the mid sixteenth century

Exhibition to launch the book