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The Great Prize Fight at White Oak Green, 1846 | An illustrated talk by Tony Cooper

The Great Prize Fight

Although well documented at the time, details of this extraordinary day have largely been forgotten. The talk covered the build up to the prize fight and outlined the events of 12th May 1846. It took place on the edge of Wychwood Forest in front of an audience of 1000 people. As the day unfolded many of those involved would have witnessed a truly astonishing spectacle in this quiet area of West Oxfordshire, although for some it would have brought trouble and strife.

Using contemporary newspaper accounts, census returns, maps, fieldwork and local records Tony gave a detailed account, concentrating on the life of one of the combatants and what happened to him on the day in question. The story also involves an energetic vicar, a magistrate, a parish constable, an ostler, a carrier and many other characters ...

Tony Cooper is a local historian from the village of Finstock. He is a member of the Finstock Local History Society and has given talks on wartime farming, John Kibble, a local stonemason, and has re-enacted a Victorian Friendly Society Club Day. He is a keen metal detectorist and would be most willing to arrange a field survey on any land in the Wychwood area.

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