Prior to my residency in Australia, I want to trace – as far as I can – the route my ancestor, Stephen Hedges, took with the lead stolen from Radley Hall. Radley Hall is now part of Radley College and in the newspaper article regarding the trial, the name of Sir G.Bowyer is given as the proprieter. Having Googled him, I was led to Wikipedia, where I discovered that he – George – was a Baronet and MP for Abingdon. In 1815, financial difficulties forced him to sell the contents of Radley Hall and by 1828, the house was being rented to Mr. Benjamin Kent. The article states that Richard Burgess – a sawyer – who was on his way from Abingdon to Oxford with a cart, met the defendents – Stockwell, Hedges and Harper – who asked if he could carry a parcel for them. He was asked to stop later on next to ‘Sir G. Bowyer’s Lodge’, after which the defendents went into a ‘plantation’ and returned with a heavy bag (full of lead).
Discovering the location of the Lodge will be important in helping me establish the route taken and looking at Google Maps, I have spotted a couple of possible locations for the old driveway. On the map below, the 18th century mansion is indicated with a yellow arrow, and the possible driveways with white arrows.
To be sure, I’ll need to try and find a map of the area as near to 1828 as I can, which means a trip to the library.