The Old Schoolrom was founded by Thomas Saunders in 1617 as a ‘school for twelve worthy boys’. It is the schoolroom that featured in Thomas Hughes’ book ‘Tom Brown’s School Days’
The building was gifted to the Parish Council in 1958 by the Right Honourable Cornelia, Countess of Craven, and was used as the village reading room for many years. To make better use of the building, John Little, who lived in the village and was Chairman of the Parish Council, developed the idea of setting up the Museum and opened it in 1984 as the ‘Tom Brown’s School Museum’. It is now known as one of the best small museums in Oxfordshire and achieved formal Accreditation status in 2013 from Arts Council England.
All the exhibits acquired since then have been donated, mostly by residents of the villages of Uffington, Woolstone and Baulking who are keen to have the history of the area preserved. On John Little’s death in 1986, his widow Joan donated his collection of 136 different editions of “Tom Brown’s School Days” to the Museum.
The Old School Room is now owned by the Parish Council which ensures it is maintained in the best possible state to house the fascinating Tom Brown's School Museum. The operation of the Museum is overseen by the Uffington Museum Trust. The trustees include members of the Parish Council, the Curator and Friends of the Museum. The daily running of the Museum is undertaken by the Curator with the Friends providing support.
We are pleased to report that our recent project to restore this 400 year old building to a proper state of repair was completed in March 2019. We are very grateful to the many individuals and organisations who have contributed to the funding, including the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development.
Following the restoration project, the sarsen kerbstones outside the museum have also been revealed and restored to their former glory improving both the appearance of the area and road safety at the junction.
European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development:
Europe investing in rural areas
Project ref: 109193