infobox UK place
country = England
official_name= Henley-on-Thames
latitude= 51.5362
longitude= -0.8984
population= 10,646 [ [http://neighbourhood.statistics.gov.uk/dissemination/LeadTableView.do?a=7&b=798656&c=RG9+2AR&d=16&e=15&g=480949&i=1001x1003x1004&m=0&enc=1&dsFamilyId=779 Census data] ]
shire_district= South Oxfordshire
shire_county = Oxfordshire
region= South East England
constituency_westminster= Henley
dial_code= 01491
os_grid_reference= SU7682
london_distance= 36.4mi

Henley-on-Thames is a town on the north side of the River Thames in south Oxfordshire, England, about 10 miles downstream and north-east from Reading, 10 miles upstream and west from Maidenhead. It is located near the corner between the counties of Oxfordshire, Berkshire and Buckinghamshire.


Henley does not appear in Domesday Book of 1086 often it is mistaken for "Henlei" in the book which is in Surrey.The first record of medieval settlement dates to 1179, when it is recorded that King Henry II “had bought land for the making of buildings”. King John granted the manor of Benson and the town an manor of Henley to Robert Harcourt in 1199. A church is first mentioned at Henley in 1204. In 1205 the town received a paviage grant, and in 1234 the bridge is first mentioned. In 1278 Henley is described as a hamlet of Benson with a Chapel. It is probable that the street plan was established by the end of the 13th century.

As a demesne of the crown it was granted to John de Molyns, in 1337 whose family held it for about 250 years. It is said that members for Henley sat in parliaments of Edward I and Edward III, but no writs have been found to substantiate this.

The existing Thursday market, it is believed, was granted by a charter of King John. A market was certainly in existence by 1269, however, the jurors of the assize of 1284 said that they did not know by what warrant the earl of Cornwall held a market and fair in the town of Henley. The existing Corpus Christi fair was granted by a charter of Henry VI.

By the beginning of the 16th century the town extended along the west bank of the Thames from Friday Street in the south to the Manor, now Phyllis Court, in the north and took in Hart Street and New Street. To the west it included Bell Street and the Market Place.

Henry VIII, having granted the use of the titles "mayor" and "burgess", the town was incorporated in 1568 by the name of the warden, portreeves, burgesses and commonalty.

Henley suffered from both parties in the Civil War. William III on his march to London in 1688 rested here and received a deputation from the Lords. The period of prosperity in the 17th and 18th centuries was due to manufactures of glass and malt, and to trade in corn and wool.

Henley-on-Thames owes much to its location and port that supplied London with timber and grain.


Henley Bridge is a five arched bridge across the river which was built in 1786. The church of "St. Mary" is located nearby and features a tower built in the 16th century. About a mile upstream of the bridge is Marsh Lock.

In the vicinity of Henley, there are several notable private buildings:
*Fawley Court is a red-brick building designed by Christopher Wren.
* Greenlands which took its present form when owned by W. H. Smith and is now home to Henley Management College

Present day

Henley is a good base from which to commute to London for those with families who don't want to live in the city. The town has its own railway station, with direct service into London Paddington during peak hours. Off-peak service requires a change of train at Twyford. In addition, there are also express mainline rail services from nearby Reading to Paddington and High Wycombe which accesses London Marylebone. A short drive along the M4 motorway leads directly into London or to Hillingdon for the London Underground.

The River and Rowing Museum, located in Mill Meadows, is the town's one museum. It was established in 1998, and officially opened by Queen Elizabeth II. The museum, designed by the architect David Chipperfield, features information on the River Thames, the sport of rowing, and the town of Henley itself.

Rowing regatta

Henley is a world renowned centre for rowing, each summer holding the Henley Royal Regatta, one of the highlights of the social calendar of the English middle and upper classes. The regatta is held on a stretch of the river that is naturally straight. The event became "Royal" in 1851. In that year Prince Albert became the patron of the regatta.

Other regattas and rowing races are held on the same reach, including: Henley Women's Regatta and the Henley Boat Races for women's and lightweight teams between Oxford and Cambridge University, Henley Veteran Regatta, Upper Thames Small Boats Head, Henley Sculling Head, and Henley Small Boats Head. These heads often attract strong crews that have won medals at National Championships.

Local rowing clubs include:

* Henley Rowing Club (located upstream of Henley Bridge)
* Leander Club (world famous, home to Olympic and World Champions, near Henley Bridge)
* Phyllis Court Rowing Club (part of the Phyllis Court Club and set up for recreational rowing)
* Upper Thames Rowing Club (located just upstream from the 3/4 mile mark/Fawley/Old Blades)

Notable people

* Boris Johnson was the Member of Parliament until he resigned to take up the post of Mayor of London. A by-election decided Conservative John Howell to be the next MP of Henley.
* Dusty Springfield has a gravesite and marker in the grounds of a church in Henley-on-Thames. Her ashes were scattered in Henley and in Ireland at the Cliffs of Moher. Every year, fans of Dusty Springfield gather in Henley to celebrate "Dusty Day" on the closest Sunday to her birthday (April 16th).
* The author George Orwell spent some of his formative years in Henley-on-Thames and the nearby village of Shiplake.
* William Lenthall was born in Henley-on-Thames. He was Speaker of the House of Commons between 1629 and 1640.
* Humphrey Gainsborough, brother of the artist Thomas Gainsborough, was a pastor and inventor who lived in Henley; a blue plaque marks his house, "The Manse".
* George Harrison lived in Henley-on-Thames from the 1970s until his death in 2001. He resided in a mansion called Friar Park.
*Ross Brawn a British engineer, best known for his role as the technical director of the Scuderia Ferrari f1 team.
*Liam Gallagher of Oasis and his wife, Nicole Appleton of All Saints have a second home in Henley-on-Thames.
*Harry Stott, winner of I'd Do Anything and star of TV show, Roman Mysteries.


Henley-on-Thames is twinned with
* , since 1973
* , since 1979

See also

* Henley Festival, held each July
*Boris Johnson, previous Tory MP for the constituency, & now Mayor of London;
*Michael Heseltine, earlier Tory MP for the constituency;
*Brakspear Brewery, founded in 1779 but now closed;
*Dusty Springfield, buried at the St. Mary the Virgin Church in Hart Street, Henley;
*David Tomlinson, born and raised here. Played "Mr. Banks" in "Mary Poppins";
*George Harrison, past resident of Henley at the Friar Park mansion;
*Leander Club, one of the world's oldest rowing clubs
*Henley shirt, a garment named after the town because it was the traditional uniform of the rowing clubs


External links

* [http://henleyonthames.org/ Henley] - aerial photo
* [http://www.henleytowncouncil.gov.uk/henley.htm Henley-on-Thames Town Council - history]
* [http://www.henley-on-thames.org/Pages/home.htm Henley-on-Thames Organisation]
* [http://www.frenchjones.co.uk/news/WhatsOnHenley.pdf A monthly guide to what's on in Henley]
* [http://www.visithenley-on-thames.co.uk/ Official Tourism website]
* [http://www.henleystandard.co.uk/news/index.php Henley Standard] local newspaper
* [http://www.rrm.co.uk/ River and Rowing Museum]
* [http://www.hrr.co.uk/ Henley Royal Regatta]
* [http://www.hyf.org.uk/ Henley Youth Festival] held each March

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Henley-on-Thames — Henley on Thames …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Henley-On-Thames — Henley on Thames …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Henley-on-thames — Henley on Thames …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Henley-on-Thames — …   Wikipedia Español

  • Henley on Thames — (spr. hénnlĭ ŏn temms), Stadt (municipal borough) in Oxfordshire (England), links an der Themse, unterhalb Reading, rings von Buchenwaldungen umgeben, hat eine gotische Marienkirche mit hohem Turm und dem Grabe des Generals Dumouriez, ist… …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • Henley-on-Thames — 51.535833333333 0.90277777777777 Koordinaten: 51° 32′ N, 0° 54′ W …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Henley on Thames — Original name in latin Henley on Thames Name in other language Henley on Thames, Henley on Thames State code GB Continent/City Europe/London longitude 51.53333 latitude 0.9 altitude 34 Population 10747 Date 2012 05 14 …   Cities with a population over 1000 database

  • Henley-on-Thames — /hen lee on temz /, n. a city in SE Oxfordshire, in S England: annual rowing regatta. 31,744. Also called Henley. * * * ▪ England, United Kingdom       town (parish), South Oxfordshire district, administrative and historic county of Oxfordshire,… …   Universalium

  • Henley on Thames — geographical name see Henley II …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • Henley-on-Thames — /hen lee on temz /, n. a city in SE Oxfordshire, in S England: annual rowing regatta. 31,744. Also called Henley …   Useful english dictionary

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”