Kate Tiller OBE

Emerita & Emeritus Fellow

OBE, DL, BA, PhD Birmingham, MA Oxford, FSA, FRHistS


Founding Fellow 1990; Reader Emerita in English Local History; Visiting Fellow in English Local History, University of Leicester; Visiting Professor in History, University of Suffolk; Deputy Lieutenant of Oxfordshire. Appointed OBE for services to local history in the New Year’s Honours 2019.
Elected 1990; Senior Tutor 1994-6; Dean of Degrees 1995/6; Vice-President 1997/8; Emerita Fellow 2003
Reader Emerita in English Local History

Kate Tiller is a Founding Fellow of the College.  As Director of Studies in Local History at the Oxford University Department for Continuing Education she planned and implemented the University’s first graduate degree course specifically designed for part-time students, the MSt in English Local History, introduced in 1993.  Its students have played a major part in Kellogg’s development.  In 1995 English Local History was one of three subjects included in the University’s first, pilot project for part-time research degrees, bringing Kellogg some of its earliest doctoral students.  In 2001-2 the University made the part-time DPhil permanent.  Kate Tiller was closely involved in securing practical support for part-time students through access to University facilities and financial support, including Kellogg’s first Graduate Studentship scheme.

Her academic fields are British social and local history, with particular research interests in English rural change post-1750, and in religion and community in Britain since 1730.  She also writes on the academic practice of local history, with current interests in local histories of the 20th century and of remembrance and community. She continues to teach and examine for a range of graduate courses and to supervise master’s and DPhil students.

Dr Tiller was awarded an OBE in the 2019 New Year’s Honours list for services to Local History.

Recent publications include:

  •  Religious Census Returns 1851 for Berkshire, Berkshire Record Society, 14 (2010), lx +133pp.
  •  ‘Chapel people in 1851: the example of Berkshire’, in C.Skidmore (ed.), Changing faces of chapel and chapel people (Chapels Society, Miscellany 2, 2010).
  •  ‘ The Place of Methodism. A study of three counties ‘ [ Berkshire. Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire], in P.Forsaith and M.Wellings (eds), Methodism and History (Oxford 2010).
  •  ‘Civil War 1642-1649’; ‘Early Modern Shops and Shopkeepers’; ‘Agriculture 1750-1970’; ‘Labouring Lives’; ‘Education in the Nineteenth Century’; ‘Church and Chapel in 1851’; and (with Chris Gilliam) ‘Poor Relief 1834-1948’; in K.Tiller and G.Darkes (eds), An Historical Atlas of Oxfordshire (2010, reprinted 2012).
  •  ‘ Local History and the Twentieth Century: an overview and suggested agenda’, in International Journal of Regional and Local Studies, Vol. 6 No.2 (2011).
  • ‘Local History in England’ and ‘Local History in Ireland’ in C. Kammen and A .H. Wilson (eds), Encyclopaedia of Local History (Alta Mira Press, US, 2013)
  • Remembrance and Community: war memorials and local history (British Association for Local History, 2013)
  •  ‘Local History and the First World War’, in Past and Future, 15 (Institute of Historical Research, Spring/Summer 2014)
  • Ewelme School: a history and guide (Friends of Ewelme School, 2014)
  • ‘How we remember: a review article’, in The Local Historian, Vol. 45.4 (October 2015)
  • ‘Anniversaries, war and local history’, in History News, Winter 2015 (American Association of State and Local History)
  • Parsonages ( Bloomsbury Shire Publications, 2016), 88 pp.
  • ‘Priests and people: changing relationships in south Oxfordshire, 1780-1920’ in People, Places and Context (Berkshire Local History Association, 2016)
  • ‘Patterns of Dissent: The Social and Religious Geography of Nonconformity in Three Counties’, International Journal of Regional and Local History, Vol. 13, No. 1 (2018), pp. 4-31
  • ‘How to read a chapel’, The Chapels Society Journal, 3 (2018), pp.3-23 [The First Christopher Stell Memorial Lecture]
  • ‘Oxford Diocese, Bishop Wilberforce and the 1851 Religious Census’, Oxoniensia, Vol. 83 (2108), pp.101-108.

Reviews published 2018

In International Journal of Regional and Local History:  R.Jones and C.Dyer (eds), Farmers, Consumers, Innovators. The World of Joan Thirsk (2016)

In History: P.M.Jones, Agricultural Enlightenment: Knowledge, Technology and Nature, 1750-1840 (2016)

In Family and Community History: C.Wakeling, Chapels of England. Buildings of Protestant Nonconformity (2017)

Other activities

Kate Tiller is working on a third edition of English Local History: an introduction (for publication by Boydell, 2020) and on an article reflecting on local history and the centenary of the First World War, for publication in The Local Historian, 2019.

She is a member of the national advisory committee of the Victoria County History, and served on the organising committee for the Anglo-American Conference of Historians 2014 (on the Great War at Home), both at the Institute of Historical Research. She was a trustee of the British Association for Local History 2013-16, and is their corresponding member with the American Association for State and Local History. She chaired the British Record Society 2016-18. She chairs the VCH Oxfordshire Trust and the Oxfordshire Record Society and serves on the editorial board of the International Journal of Regional and Local History and the Council of the Chapels Society. She is a Patron of the Historic Chapels Trust, Vice Patron of the Almshouse Association, Hon. President of the Hook Norton Local History Group, and history advisor to the Aldeburgh and District Local History Society. Kate Tiller is a member of the Oxford History Faculty. A keen sports fan, in 2001 she became the first woman member of the committee of Oxford University Rugby Football Club, served as Chair 2017-18 and is now a Life Vice-president of the club.