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Brackley Jewish Heritage
Brackley is a very small market town, in rural Northamptonshire, on the main road between Northampton and Oxford. Until after the War, the town was little larger than a large village, with a market place and 2 - 3,000 residents. However, the town has an unexpected and little known Jewish heritage, largely dating from just after World War I, to the end of World War II.
In days past it is most likely that Jewish peddlers would have made their rounds, through and around Brackley, with their wares, in the 18th century. It would have probably been on the 'walk' of Jewish peddlers like Bernard Levy, who was known in Northampton, Eynsham, Witney, Woodstock from c. 1770 - 1810.
Winchester House School
The first certain Jewish history is reached when Winchester House School, a Church of England boys' boarding school, founded in 1875, moved from the south of England, to the town in 1922. Jewish boys from 'The Cousinhood', the leading Sephardic and aristocratic Jewish families, were boarded and educated at the school, both before and after, it moved to Brackley. There are some 50-60 boys in the register, from the 1910s to 1950, who are probably Jewish. These boys were at the school, as Winchester House was a feeder school to some of the leading public schools, particularly Stowe, and Rugby, as well as schools such as Bloxham, Malvern, Cranleigh and Winchester schools.Next