Bewdley Worcestershire Family History Guide

Photo of High Street, Bewdley, Worcestershire
Photo of High Street, Bewdley, Worcestershire Taken in March 2007 around mid-day, looking towards Bewdley Church (St. Annes) and Load Street. There are a number of houses which date back to the 1600s. by Mary Simpson, some rights reserved.

Bewdley, originally an extra-parochial place, was annexed, during the reign of Henry VI (1422-1461), to Ribbesford Ancient Parish. It became a separate Ecclesiastical Parish in 1853 and a separate Civil Parish in 1866. In 1940 it was abolished ecclesiastically to create Ribbesford with Bewdley Ecclesiastical Parish.

Parish church: St. Anne

Parish registers begin: 1853

Nonconformists include: Baptist, Presbyterian Unitarian, Society of Friends/Quaker, and Wesleyan Methodist.

Parishes adjacent to Bewdley

Historical Descriptions of Bewdley

St Anne's church, Bewdley
St Anne’s church, Bewdley St Anne’s church stands in the centre Bewdley on effectively what is a traffic island with vehicles passing both side of it. The tower dates from 1695-6, the main body of the church is later and dates from 1745-8. The copyright on this image is owned by Philip Halling and is licensed for reuse under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 license.

Beeton’s British Gazetteer 1870

Bewdley, a parliamentary borough and market and post town of England, in Worcestershire, on the Severn, 14 miles N.W. from Worcester. It contains a neat church, built in 1748, besides several meeting-houses; and has a considerable trade in salt, malt, leather, and iron-ware. Mar. D. Sat. Pop. including the suburb of Wribbenhall, 7084. It is a station on the Severn Valley branch of the West Midland section of the Great Western Railway, between Hartlebury and Shrewsbury, 5½ miles by rail from the former, and 35 from the latter. It is also a telegraph station.

Source: Beeton’s British Gazetteer 1870. Ward, Lock & Tyler, Paternoster Row, London.

Leonard’s Gazetteer of England and Wales 1850

Bewdley, in Ribbesford, 128 miles N.W. London. Market, Sat. P. 3400

Source: Leonard’s Gazetteer of England and Wales; Second Edition; C. W. Leonard, London; 1850.

Worcestershire Delineated C. and J. Greenwood 1822

Bewdley – a borough and market town, in the parish of Ribbesford, Doddingtree hundred, lower division; 3 miles W.S.W. from Kidderminster, and 132 from London; containing 879 inhabited houses. It is pleasantly situate on the west side of the river Severn, and a few years since was a town of considerable important, having had 2 market days and 4 annual fairs; but owing its trade principally to the navigation on the river Severn, a great portion of it has since been lost in consequence of the junction of the Staffordshire canal with that river at Stourport.

The corporation of Bewdley consists of a bailiff, recorder, high steward, and 12 capital burgesses; the bailiff is the returning officer. The present member is Wilson Aylesbury Roberts, Esq. The town-hall is a handsome stone building, with iron gates leading to the market place. The apartments are spacious, and well calculated for the purposes for which they are intended.
Bewdley was formerly noted for the manufacture of sailors’ and school boys’ caps; and the wear of them was enjoined by an act of parliament, passed in the reign of Queen Elizabeth, under a penalty of 3s. 4d.: there are only 2 manufactories of this article in the town, at present; but a considerable number of persons are employed in the horn trade.

In 1748, a new chapel was erected in the centre of the town, the minister of which is chosen by the corporation, and is independent of the parish church: here are likewise 4 meeting-houses for different sects.

King James I. founded a free-grammar school in Bewdley, to which considerable benefactions have since been added.

The market is on Saturday. – Fairs 23rd April, and 10th and 11th Dec. Population, 1801, 3671 – 1811, 3454 – 1821, 3725.

Source: Worcestershire Delineated: Being a Topographical Description of Each Parish, Chapelry, Hamlet, &c. In the County; with the distances and bearings from their respective market towns, &c. By C. and J. Greenwood. Printed by T. Bensley, Crane Court, Fleet Street, London, 1822.

Directories

Bewdley Bennett’s Business Directory for Worcestershire, 1914

Bewdley Bennetts Business Directory 1899

Bewdley, Wribbenhall and Neighbours Pigots Directory 1842

Bewdley Lewis Worcestershire Directory 1820

Bewdley Universal British Directory 1791

Family History Links

FamilySearch – Birth Marriage & Death records, Census, Migration & Naturalization and Military records – Free

Worcester BMSGH

Administration

  • County: Worcestershire
  • Civil Registration District: Kidderminster
  • Diocese: pre 1919 Hereford; Post 1919 Worcester.
  • Rural Deanery:
  • Poor Law Union: Kidderminster
  • Hundred: Lower Doddingtree
  • Province: Canterbury

Maps

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