Feb 022016

On Monday, 22 February 2016, Tony Hadland will talk to Oxfordshire FHS on:

Who were the Hildesleys?

Anyone researching local or family history in southern Oxfordshire or west Berkshire is likely to come across occasionalLittle Stoke Manor (921 x 597) mentions of the Hildesley family. Yet finding a cohesive account of who they were has hitherto proved almost impossible. The situation is not helped by the fact that the surname Hildesley occurs in at least two dozen spellings and can begin with an H, an I or even a Y! In this illustrated talk, Tony Hadland traces the story of the main Hildesley line, from the time of Henry VIII until it died out in the 18th century. Along the way, we discover the family’s stance on both sides of the Reformation, why some of their children had to live abroad and why there is a lane in Cholsey called Papist Way. Finally, Tony poses the question of how closely related to the main gentry line of Hildesleys are the many ordinary Oxfordshire and Berkshire folk who today have the surnames Ilsley or Illsley.

We meet at the Exeter Hall, Oxford Road, Kidlington, OX5 1AB, with the talk starting at 8:00pm. Doors open at 7:15pm, when there will be advisors offering computer and genealogy help, books for sale, and tea and coffee available.

Non-members are very welcome.
For details of future talks, see www.ofhs.org.uk

  2 Responses to “Who were the Hildesleys? – Oxfordshire FHS talk 22 February 2016”

  1. Good Day,

    I am most interested to find this web page. We have been researching the Hildesley line for some time in connection with my fathers Illsley line. I would be most grateful to find out if at all possible what your findings are. I had been under the assumption that one of the more definitive web pages on the Hildesleys was this one:

    We have found the entry in visitations mentioned and strong links with the Moore family

    We were contacted by an american line who were Ilsley who held a family coat of arms similar to the one detailed in the above web page but that had a different crest. We were most excited to find that it was listed in Burkes Peerage but then most dissapointed to find that it was a self assumed crest and coat of arms.

    Please do not hesitate to get back to us. We also have a link from Hildesley to Arden via Aldermaston we think.

    Best regards,


    • I will send your comment to the person who gave the talk. I don’t have any connection with the Hildesleys myself but have possible relatives who lived in the Ilsleys and Aldermaston.

      Best wishes,


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