We the undersigned call on Oxfordshire County Council to maintain its current funding of the Victoria County History of Oxfordshire (VCH).
VCH Oxfordshire is the pre-eminent history of the county, providing a fully-researched history of every town and village. It is THE starting point for anyone interested in local history, from local people interested in their neighbourhoods, houses or families through to professional historians, archaeologists, planners and conservationists. The Oxfordshire VCH now covers more than two thirds of the county, and its completion will provide a unique resource for large numbers of people both now and in the future.
All this has been made possible through a successful and long-term partnership centred on the County Council. Other partners include Oxford and London Universities, the Heritage Lottery Fund, and an independent VCH Oxfordshire Trust, which for ten years has successfully raised funds from over 400 local individuals, societies and charitable bodies, and continues to do so. The Trust\'s fundraising directly supports the VCH\'s Oxfordshire work, significantly supplementing the Council\'s crucial core role.
The County Council has now made unilateral proposals to withdraw its funding from the Oxfordshire VCH. This would cripple the work of the Oxfordshire VCH, in the midst of successful projects supported not only by the County Council but by the Trust and other partners.
In this the year of the county\'s Millennium, we strongly urge Oxfordshire County Council to continue its modest but vital support for the VCH, and to work in partnership with the Trust and others to see it through to completion.
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THE VCH OXFORDSHIRE TRUST
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