The Old Grammar School - Our Exciting Future

After a magnificent fundraising effort, this historic building was completely reroofed in the summer of 2017. 

Now thanks to lots more hard work and generous support from the landlords (Bampton Exhibition Foundation), WODC and all our visitors, sufficient funds have been raised to carry out our long-planned improvements to the interior of the building.

The Upstairs Room

A new staircase will create access to the wonderful upstairs space which hasn’t been accessible since the early 1960’s. 

This new space will be used as our main exhibition room. Normally we present three exhibitions every year all with a local interest. We also host exhibitions with West Ox Arts. In addition, we will encourage local groups to utilise the space for community talks, workshops etc.

The Bampton Archive will also install the latest technology to allow individuals and groups to access and research the substantial Bampton Archive: both the database itself, and the wide range of books, exhibition catalogues, audio and video recordings. 

The space and furniture will be modular and totally flexible to create a fantastic community space and we will encourage locals to explore, use and get involved in it.

The Robert Vesey Room

A new door to access the ground-floor Vesey Room will be created and the room itself will be sensitively refurbished and fitted out with new storage and display furniture. 

We will continue to use this space to sell our fantastic range of Bampton Archive books and catalogues; and the excellent range of local arts, crafts, cards, prints and Downton Abbey memorabilia. We would also like to introduce an enhanced range of items for sale that are made or produced locally.

We will also display some smaller more general exhibition panels designed to be of general interest to all visitors. There will be information on the history of the village of Bampton and related activities.

Bampton Library

The library area, also located on the ground-floor, will also be completely refurbished with a dedicated doorway created beyond the staircase. A modern shelving system is planned which will allow flexible use of the library space and create room for extra book stock. There will be a new counter area and the very latest in computer technology for use by the general public. 

A new kitchen area will be created and a stair lift is also planned to allow access for all to the upstairs space.

Talks and Workshops

As well as staging exhibitions, the Archive also plan to use the space upstairs and the space in the newly designed library to hold a wide range of community events. 

A regular programme of talks, workshops and small events is being put together. This will include, for example:

  • Workshops to encourage youngsters to sign up for apprenticeships for some of the historical trades – for example Dry Stone Walling, Carpentry and Joinery, Thatching and Classic Car Restoration
  • Alternative Medicine – Exploring the Village Herbal
  • Nature and the Natural World
  • Environment and Sustainability
  • Cycling & Walking
  • Health & Fitness
  • Wellbeing & Mental Health
  • Book readings and signings with visiting Authors
  • Recitals
  • Creative writing
  • Children’s events
  • Local History
  • Arts & Crafts
  • IT Access for all
  • Film Shows
  • …and much more


Part of the project is to create the maximum amount of storage both upstairs and downstairs.

We have many items and artefacts that have been acquired or donated to the Archive over the years and we want to be able to store and manage as many of these as possible on site.

Get Involved!

We welcome anyone who would like to get involved with the Bampton Archive, Bampton Library or Bampton Exhibition Foundation. We always need volunteers.

If you would be interested in presenting a talk, holding a workshop or other activity, please get in touch.

Be part of this exciting community hub.

For more information or to find out what opportunities there are to get involved please contact:  

Jenny Chaundy  

Robin Shuckburgh