he Victoria County History (VCH) is a major local history research and publication project organized county by county, and covering much of England. Though focused on places rather than family history or surnames, its parish histories contain much about the families and individuals who helped shape the places they lived in, and supplies a context for their daily lives – from labourers and farmers through to gentry and landowners. Less centrally it touches also on the origins of names (particularly those associated with topography or occupations), on migration, and on the long-term stability (or otherwise) of surnames in particular areas. This talk will explain what the VCH does, how it can be accessed, and the ways in which its work can have relevance for family history in Gloucestershire and beyond.
Dr Simon Draper is Assistant Editor for the Victoria County History (VCH) in Oxfordshire, having previously worked for the VCH in Gloucestershire researching and writing a number of parish histories. He also worked as part of the small team that produced the Oxford Dictionary of Family Names in Britain and Ireland (2016) and edits the annual Transactions of the Bristol and Gloucestershire Archaeological Society