Parish Register Newsletter: August 2010

Welcome to the parishregister  August newsletter (if you click on the link to our home page you'll see I've tinkered with it a wee bit-let me know what you think eh). I hope you've all had a stupendous summer which seems to have morphed into autumn already! Before I start I'd just like to thank all those of you who e-mail me to say how much you enjoy my newsletter and how much you look forward to receiving it, it certainly makes the effort worthwhile! My five and a half (not six) week holiday is almost over and I'm eagerly looking forward to getting back to school. O.K that's the small talk out of the way, let's get down to business. This month we've got another new St John Wapping 1618-1665 CD  in our Parish Register series and another new database on-line with over 12000 entries. Also look out for special offers on our great value compendium CDs.  

Searchable Databases

This month: St Matthew Bethnal Green 1799-1819 A whopping database expertly transcribed by Beryl. The film was a challenge as it wasn't in the best condition, but Beryl pulled out all the stops to transcribe almost every single entry on this film of over 12000 baptisms. I found some items of interest and amusement whilst looking through this database, like the surnames Sowerbutts, Shufflebotham and Christmas which all brought a silly smirk to my face; and there were also quite a few French names, the reason for which is explained in the article below.

Last month: St Dunstan Stepney 1629-1641

Next month: St Dunstan Stepney 1641-1652

To search the site click here: search 

More about St Matthews:

 As early as 1690 negotiations were commenced for the creation of a separate parish of Bethnal Green. Nicholas Hawksmoor drew up plans for a large, basilica-type church, which was to be built by the “Fifty Church Commissioners”. There was opposition to this, however, from both the local population, who feared the increase in costs to themselves in maintaining a church building and its Rector, and from the Rector of Stepney, whose income from tithes in the area would be lost if it became a separate parish.Negotiations were drawn out and it was not until 13 October 1725 that a portion of Hare Fields (its last remnants seen in the 15 metres of Hare Marsh remaining off Cheshire St) was purchased for the church at the cost of £200,. The reason that the site for the new church was to be so detached from the old village green was that there had grown up, with the Huguenot weavers’ community, a sizeable new commercial hub in west Bethnal Green around Hare St (now known as Cheshire St). But by now the Commissioners scheme was in financial difficulties and the plans for the church building were abandoned.In 1742 the parish of Bethnal Green was finally authorised and George Dance was commissioned to design a smaller and more reasonable church than that Hawksmoor had done. No detailed description of Dance’s designs survives but his drawings in the Soane Museum show simple and spacious ideas. In 1743 the foundation stone was laid by Ebenezer Mussell but St Matthew’s troubles were not over. The following year work on the half-built church was halted as, once again, funds were insufficient.A petition was made to Parliament and in 1745 an Act was passed to pay all debts and complete the work. The Act began,
‘The want of a place for public worship of Almighty God hath been a great cause of increase of dissoluteness of morals and a disregard for religion, too apparent in the younger and poorer sort.’

The church was finally completed and dedicated on 15 July 1746.In 1859 the interior of the church was destroyed by fire. The night of the fire was so cold that the firemen were covered in sheets of ice as they struggled with the flames. The registers and robes having been saved, a rate was then levied on the Parish to rebuild the church but the work was delayed by builders’ strikes and rows between the architect, T.E. Knightley, and the local committee. Finally the church was reopened on 13 December 1861. To read the remainder of this article please click here: St Matthew's-Bethnal Green 

New CD 

Last month:

Volume 72  St Mary, Stratford Bow 1813-1831

To buy this CD please click here: St M   

This month: Volume 73 St John Wapping 1618-1665 

To buy this CD please click here: St J

To browse our other single CDs please click here: single CDs

Why buy the CD? Well, I've had two people explain just this to me in the last few days. The first was Beryl, who had just finished transcribing St Matthew 1799-1819. Whilst I was looking through the database I queried the spelling of a name as it looked very similar to others, but she e-mailed back saying that she checked it and it was definitely correct. However the mother and father were the same as the other ones spelt similarly; so, in a nutshell we transcribe what is on the film, even if we know for sure that the recorder has spelt a name wrong. Therefore, if you use our search facility, you may well find some relatives but there could also be the odd one that could slip through the net. The second was  Bruce, a subscriber to this newsletter who bought a CD recently and then e-mailed me saying we had transcribed an entry incorrectly. I e-mailed Jim and asked him to check the entry again. He said the entry still looked as he had transcribed it but conceded it must be the surname Bruce said it should be because all the other details once again matched others entries with a similar surname (although to be honest it wasn't that similar!) So, if Bruce hadn't bought the CD he wouldn't have found that relative.

At this point I think I'll slip in a special offer-£10 off compendiums 1-5, and also our new St Dunstan compendium, so if you fancy any or all of them click on this link to the compendium department where you can see what's on each one.

If you think you may have a relative who was a merchant Taylor then don't forget to search our 36000 entry database (you've nothing to lose!)

Now In Transcription

St Mary Stratford Bow 1831-1843

St George in the East 1877-1893

St Anthony Globe Road 1879-1899

St Dunstan Stepney 1629-1637 Other selected products

East of London Family History Society

Tower Hamlets Rate Books (Vol 1)- Disc 1

Miscellaneous Rate Index covering various Areas between 1725-1875
Previous Society publication in fiche or book form now converted into CD.
To buy this product please click here: Ratevol1

Tower Hamlets Marriages & Banns (Vol 1)-Disc 3
Holy Trinity Minories 1676 - 1754
Christ Church Spitalfields Banns 1833 - 1861

To buy this product please click here: THM&B

Tower Hamlets Burials & MI's (Vol 1) Disc 5
All Saints Poplar Burial Dues 1824-38
Holy Trinity Mile End Old Town MI'S
Poplar Mortuary books 1911-1940
St Katherine by the Tower MI's
Burials & List of occupiers affected by demolition.
Stepney Meeting House Burials 1790-1853

To buy this CD please click here: THB

St Andrews

Burials & M.I. St. Andrews Church, Hornchurch. 1576-2000
Surname index of Monumental Inscriptions and Burials, of 17,195 names for the years of 1576 - 2000.
This month there's £2 off this product. To buy it please click here: St Andrew

Cockney Ancestors

Cockney Ancestor. The first 100.
Now £10, to buy this click here: Cockney


The Frogley Index and Manuscript (History of Barking)

Please click here if you'd like to buy it: Frog

Other products in this series include:

Crow Lane Burial index 1871-1953 listing 20,000 entries.

Census 1851 West Ham.HO107/1768.

Census 1891 Hackney Part 1.RG12/0179 - 0194. 

Census 1891 West Ham Part 1 RG12/1310 - 1325

Census 1891 West Ham Part 2 RG12/1326 - 1342 

Watermen & Lightermen

You can browse all of the Watermen and Lightermen products by clicking here: W&L but here's my selected CD of interest in this department:

My Ancestor Worked on the Thames

The CD covers both sides of the Thames and gives details of nearly every
wharf, creek, river buoys, watermens' stairs, riverside taverns etc., plus
history and interesting facts.

A snip at £9.95; so if you would like to snap up the snip, click here: snip 

Catholic Registers

SS. Mary and Joseph, Poplar Roman Catholic Chapel.

Marriages and Baptisms 1818 - 1856

To buy this CD please click here: SSMary

Misc Catholic London District Baptism, Marriages and Burials Vol 1

27 indexed transcriptions of Catholic Parish Registers from churches, chapels and missions in the county of Middlesex

To buy this CD please click here: Catholic 2

The Registers of the Sardinian Embassy Chapel, London, 1772 - 1841(Church of SS Anselm and Cecilia in Holborn). This comprises indexed transcriptions of over 22000 baptisms hitherto unpublished, a work which has taken them about 10 years to produce!!In total there are 60000 odd entries on this CD, a bargain at £7.95!

To buy this CD please click here: Catholic 3

Misc Catholic London District Transcriptions, Baptisms, Marriages,Confirmations Vol 2

·       French Chapel Royal: Baptisms 1842-1911 and Marriages 1846-1910
·         Kentish Town, St Alexis: Baptisms 1849-1854
·         Blessed Virgin Mary of Czestochowa and St Stanislaus Kostka Chapels, Central London: Baptisms 1863-1877
·         Soho St Patrick: Baptisms 1779-1851, Index to Baptisms 1793-1937, Confirmations 1818-1854 and Marriages 1809-1856
·         Southwark St George's Fields Chapel: Baptisms 1788-1823 and Marriages 1823-1837
·         St James, Spanish Place, Westminster: Baptisms 1732-1848 and Marriages 1732-1845
·         Standon, Old Hall Green, Herts.: Baptisms 1811-1831, Confirmations 1814-1849 and Marriages 1812-1848
·         Virginia Street Chapel, Wapping: Baptisms 1832-1840

If you would like this CD please click here: Catholic 4

Merchant Taylors

The Merchant Taylors 1520-1929 (36000 entries-Exclusive to Docklands Ancestors!) The index gives the name, date of freedom, method of admission (apprenticeship, patrimony, or redemption), name of master if by apprenticeship, date of election to livery, and 'Remarks'. 

To purchase this CD please click here:  Merchant Taylors

SPECIAL OFFER Compendium CDs 1-5

This is a very special offer price for customers who wish to buy our first five Compendium CDs.
Price if bought separately: 60 x £7.95 = £477
Price of individual Compendium CDs: £49.99 + £39.99 + £39.99 + £39.99 + £49.99 = £219.95
Special Offer price: £149.99

To take advantage of this special discount please click here: 1-5

Docklands Ancestors Parish Register CDs - Compendiums' Department

Docklands Ancestors Parish Register CD Department 

East of London FHS Publications Department 

'Thames & River Medway Series - Compilation CDs'

'Thames & River Medway Series - Single Parish CDs' Rob's now transcribed 85 of these!

Map Department

Ecclesiastical Map-County of London 1903

A Map of the Ecclesiastical Divisions within the County of London 1903.

To buy this really useful map (if you're not sure which parish is next to which and wish to search for neighbouring parishes) then click here: Parishmap (a bargain at £5)

Map of Middlesex 1611 by by John Norden and John Speed

The print shown is a copy of the original and so is in colour, the print we offer you is in black and white. The print measures 46cms x 58cms. 

To buy this map for £4.95 plus p&p please click here: Middlesex

A Balloon View of London 1851


To buy one for £6.95 (that's £1.55 off!) click here: Balloon

Devastated London - The Bombed City As Seen From A Barrage Balloon


To buy this (folded) map for the bargain price of £4.50 click here: Devastated London

London and Its Environs 1813


Price: £3.95! To buy this map and for more information please click here

Rocque's 1745 Survey of London


Price: £7.95 To buy this map and for more information please click here

 To view our comprehensive Alan Godfrey maps collection please click here  

Waterman & Parish Register Special Offer Price: £129.93

Book Shop

            If you'd like to browse the book shop we stock books in the following areas:

London History including Family and Kinship in East London, London in the 19th century: A Human Awful Wonder Of God By Jerry White,  The City of London and The Plagues of London

Watermen and Lightermenincluding The Coat:The Origin and Times of Doggett's Famous Wager and James's ever popular My Ancestors were Thames Watermen: A Guide to Tracing your Thames Waterman and Lighterman Ancestors

East End - History/Archive Photograph Books including A Century of the East End,  East End: Four Centuries of London Life, East End Neighbourhoods and many more.

Rare Books

One-Off Books (used, all good condition)

Step By-Step Guide to Tracing Your Ancestors by D.M.Field (£3.50 plus p & p)

The chapels in the Tower of London (The chapel Royal of St. Peter ad Vincula and the Chapel of St.John The Evangelist by The Reverend John F.M.Llewellyn (£3 plus p & p)

These second-hand titles are not on the site so if you would like to buy one please e-mail Yvonne at (first come first served!) and payment is by cheque only.


Interesting Sites


In case you missed them, here are the sites I found last month:

London Lives 1690-1800


History of Stratford 

Worshipful Company of Shipwrights

And here are the ones I've unearthed this month:

Remembering your east end This is a a site intended for schools but I found it really fascinating. It has section on World War 2, Childhood and Streets, Health and Welfare, Women, work, and Migration. I bet once you've clicked on this you'll be there a while! For me it's an interesting look back at the past, for some of you it will bring back memories!

Tower Hamlets History Online Not quite sure if I've steered this one in your direction before, but if you're interested in East End history this one is also well worth a look. It uses materials taken from the Tower hamlets' local history library and archives.

Australian family history and genealogy

These Australian sites contain a variety of information relating to family history and genealogy including guides, indexes and digitised images of documents. They also provide links to other informative sites both in Australia and overseas and pathways to make contact with other family historians via indexed family trees, mailing lists and bulletin boards.


Ramblings from the Council Estate

I'll start with a sad announcement; the sports bag has retired, it's been sent to the top shelf of the wardrobe as it's been very annoying to her indoors, reminding her of those good intentions she had all those months ago to take said bag to the gym. So, if any of you are thinking of taking up exercise or replacing that tired old sports bag I know where you can get a lovely new pink one at a bargain price!  

Do you remember I told you about my mother's antics in Auckland airport on the way over here some 10 weeks ago now? Well, her other half, Anthony, a dead ringer for the  Archbishop of Canterbury, tried to trump her as he made his way over here some three weeks after her. His plan was to hop on the plane at Auckland, stop overnight in Hong Kong to break up the journey and make it less stressful, and then carry on to good old blighty the next day. Well, things didn't start well, the first flight was delayed by half a day! This meant his relaxing stay in Hong Kong would be more of a flying visit, but hey ho. Anyway the flight to H.K was fine, then things got better; he was first off the plane and his suitcase was first to appear on the carousel. He eagerly grabbed his almost unique suitcase and off he went to the hotel. Just time for a quick shower, a change of clothes and dinner, he thought. He had a refreshing shower, opened the suitcase and....oh no, not his clothes, not his suitcase!!! So, he headed off back to the airport to reclaim his suitcase only to be told the person with his suitcase had, once they had worked out whose it was, taken it to his hotel! He was reunited with his 'almost unique' case but poor chap didn't have the most relaxing of stop-overs after all.

So, once mother and other half were reunited also, they set off round the United Kingdom, taking in the West Country, Scotland, Sheffield and ended up meeting us in Suffolk. They thought they were being clever leaving the N.Z winter and joining us in our summer, but no such luck! Rain seemed to follow them all round the country and settled on them, almost permanently in Scotland. Not only that but they brought it down to Suffolk, so after a long period of drought in the South East we too had a bucket full of rain in our only week away. Never mind, we stayed in a lovely cottage, had some super meals, ate loads of cake (made by her indoors of course) did quite a lot of walking, and I read three books; my quota for the year! Oh yes, that reminds me; when I was at school , in geography I'm sure they told me that East Anglia is flat, well trust me, if you run across it Suffolk is definitely not flat! And, what's more, out in the sticks I wasn't able to run on the lovely clean concrete that covers much of Hackney, I had to trudge through mud, wet grass, cow dung, and fields with spiky bits of straw sticking up! Still, I still managed my thirty odd miles. Talking of running, it's marathon time on September 11th. I did my last long run the other week, some 23 odd miles, and golly gosh, was it tough going, so much so that I walked the last couple of miles! Fingers crossed!Send me an encouraging good luck email if you want, the more I get the more it will spur me on!

I was just wondering about phobias. I say this because I'm not sure if I've got one or not. The nearest I think I come to one is have my Barnet Fair cut. As my hair gets longer and I start receiving heavy hints from her indoors about the length of my greying locks the apprehension in me rises. I try and put the dreaded day off by surreptitiously snipping off the bits that stick out first thing in the morning but this only seems to make the situation worse! This time round my stress levels were raised further when I discovered that my regular was shut down! Since then I've been scouring the streets of Hackney looking for a barber that doesn't look too intimidating. Well, today was my last chance to get the chop before school starts. I thought I'd return my books to the library first, which I thought would delay proceedings by a few more minutes, but guess what, when I got there it was still not open, so I had to bite the bullet and select one from along Hoxton market. I passed four or five, and none looked 'suitable', then just as as I thought I would have to give up I found one, a straightforward gents barber. I stuck my head through the door and asked how much, £9 he said, quite reasonable for round here, so in I stepped. Trim he asked, yup, I responded, and after a quick snip, snip, snip it was all over, phew! Once it was all over I wondered what I had been worrying about. Where does this all stem from I wonder. Well, I think it all goes back to my childhood (mum, you can confirm this). I'm sure I remember dreading going to the barbers as a kiddy, and I'm sure I remember making a scene in the barbers and wriggling and crying in the moments before the barber set about his work. Wow, I've got that off my chest, I feel much better now!   

No feedback from anyone on the recipe I gave you last month, so I'm not sure whether it was a waste of time or not, did any of you have a go? Anyway, unless I get negative feedback, I think I'll still stick one in every now and again!

I've not given you a YouTube clip for a while so here's a 30 second clip of a dog exercising with its owner: dog

I thought I'd finish with a poem, just for a change:

Strangers In The Box

Come, look with me inside this drawer,
In this box I've often seen,
At the pictures, black and white,
Faces proud, still, and serene.
I wish I knew the people,
These strangers in the box,
Their names and all their memories,
Are lost among my socks.
I wonder what their lives were like,
How did they spend their days?
What about their special times?
I'll never know their ways.
If only someone had taken time,
To tell, who, what, where, and when,
These faces of my heritage,
Would come to life again.
Could this become the fate,
Of the pictures we take today?
The faces and the memories,
Someday to be passed away?
Take time to save your stories,
Seize the opportunity when it knocks,
Or someday you and yours,
Could be strangers in the box.

author  Pam Harazim

All the best to all of you

Jonathan and the team


-A Passion For Family History-

© Docklands Ancestors Ltd.