Sonning, Berkshire Family History Guide

Sonning is an Ancient Parish in the county of Berkshire.

Other places in the parish include: Woodley and Sandford, Woodley, Sonning Town, and Sandford.

Alternative names:

Parish church:

Parish registers begin:

  • Parish registers: 1592
  • Bishop’s Transcripts: 1592

Nonconformists include: Independent/Congregational, Primitive Methodist, and Roman Catholic.

Adjacent Parishes

Parish History

The Imperial Gazetteer of England & Wales 1870

SONNING, a village and a hundred in Berks, and a parish in Berks and Oxford. The village stands on the Thames, 2 miles W by N of Twyford r. station, and 3 ENE of Reading; was the seat of a bishopric, afterwards removed to Sherborne, and finally to Salisbury; retained an episcopal palace till the time of Elizabeth; contains a house in which Sydney Smith wrote “Peter Plymley’s Letters;’’ and has a post-office under Reading, and an excellent inn. The parish comprises the liberties of S.-Town, Earley, and Woodley and Sandford, in Wokingham district, Berks, and the liberty of Eye and Dunsden in Henley district, Oxford. Acres, 9,813. Rated property, £15,083. Pop., 2,747. Houses, 566. Holme Park, Bulmershe Court, Earley Court, and Maiden Earley are chief residences. A cattle market is held every Monday at Loddon-Bridge. The living is a vicarage in the diocese of Oxford. Value, £514. Patron, the Bishop of O. The church was restored in 1853. A chapel of ease is in Eye and Dunsden. The p. curacy of Earley is a separate benefice. There are an endowed school with £30 a year, a national school, church lands £54, and general charities £101. The Reading cemetery also is in the parish. The hundred contains 3 parishes, and 3 parts. Acres, 22,119. Pop., 8,268. Houses, 1,570.

Source: The Imperial Gazetteer of England & Wales [Wilson, John M]. A. Fullarton & Co. N. d. c. [1870-72].

The Parliamentary Gazetteer of England and Wales 1851

Sonning, a parish partly in the hund. of Binfield, county of Oxford, but chiefly in the hund, of Sonning, union of Wokingham, county of Berks; 2½ miles east-north-east of Reading, on the south eastern bank of the Thames, betwixt it and the line of the Great Western railway, which is here carried through a very deep cutting. The parish includes the liberties of Early and Eye with Dunsden, and the township of Sandford with Woodley. Living, a vicarage, formerly in the dio. of Salisbury, now in the dio. of Oxford; rated at £26 7s. 1d.; gross income £614. Tithes commuted in 1816. Patron, in 1841, R. Palmer, Esq. Here are 14 daily schools, one of which is endowed with £25 per annum, another with £10. Other charities, in 1836, £109 3s. per annum, of which part was applied to parochial purposes, and part to apprenticing poor children. Poor rates, in 1838, £232 13s. The manor of Sonning was held by the bishops of Salisbury at the time of the Conquest, and the manor-house was, for some centuries afterwards, their occasional residence. Acres 9,450. Houses 403 A.P. £9,296. Pop., in 1801, 1,938; in 1831, 2,568.

Source: The Parliamentary Gazetteer of England and Wales; A Fullarton & Co. Glasgow; 1851.


Below is a list of people that were declared bankrupt between 1820 and 1843 extracted from The Bankrupt Directory; George Elwick; London; Simpkin, Marshall and Co.; 1843.

Knott Henry, Sonning, Berkshire, builder, March 2, 1841

Parish Records

Berkshire Archives & Family History Groups

Berkshire Record Office

Berkshire Family History Society

GENUKI Berkshire


England, Berkshire, Reading, Cemetery Records, 1843-1959

Newtown Road Cemetery

Berkshire BMD

Berkshire Gravestones

Find A Grave Berkshire

West Berkshire War Memorials

Calendar of Berkshire Wills

Wellington College Register 1859-1905

Abingdon Union Workhouse Census 1881

Bradfield Union Workhouse 1881

Cookham Union Workhouse 1881

Easthampstead Union Workhouse 1881

Great Faringdon Union Workhouse 1881

Hungerford Union Workhouse 1881

Newbury Union Workhouse 1881

Reading Union Workhouse 1881

Wallingford Union Workhouse 1881

Wantage Union Workhouse 1881

Windsor Union Workhouse 1881

Wokingham Union Workhouse

Berkshire Enclosure Maps

Berkshire History

Records for England

Births and Baptism Records

England Births and Christenings, 1538-1975

Great Britain, Births and Baptisms, 1571-1977

England and Wales Birth Registration Index, 1837-2008

United Kingdom, Maritime Births, Marriages, and Deaths, 1787-1933

Marriage Records

England Marriages, 1538–1973

Great Britain Marriages, 1797-1988

England and Wales Marriage Registration Index, 1837-2005

United Kingdom, Maritime Births, Marriages, and Deaths, 1787-1933

Death Records

England Death Records, 1998-2015

England Deaths and Burials, 1538-1991

Great Britain Deaths and Burials, 1778-1988

England and Wales Death Registration Index 1837-2007

United Kingdom, Maritime Births, Marriages, and Deaths, 1787-1933

England and Wales, National Index of Wills and Administrations, 1858-1957

England and Wales, Prerogative Court of Canterbury Wills, 1640-1660

Non-Conformist Records

England and Wales Non-Conformist Record Indexes (RG4-8), 1588-1977


England and Wales Census, 1841

England and Wales Census, 1851

England and Wales Census, 1861

England and Wales Census, 1871

England and Wales Census, 1881

England and Wales Census, 1891

England and Wales Census, 1901

England and Wales Census, 1911


United Kingdom, Merchant Navy Seamen Records, 1835-1941

War and Conflict

Great Britain, War Office Registers, 1772-1935

United Kingdom, Chelsea Pensioners’ Service Records, 1760-1913

United Kingdom, Royal Hospital Chelsea: Discharge Documents of Pensioners 1760-1887 (WO 122)

United Kingdom, Maritime Births, Marriages, and Deaths, 1787-1933

United Kingdom, Militia Service Records, 1806-1915

United Kingdom, World War I Service Records, 1914-1920

United Kingdom, World War I Women’s Army Auxiliary Corps Records, 1917-1920

Newspaper Archives

British Newspaper Archive, Family Notices

British Newspaper Archives, Obituaries


Vision of Britain historical maps


  • County: Berkshire
  • Civil Registration District: Wokingham
  • Probate Court: Court of the Peculiar of the Dean of Salisbury
  • Diocese: Pre-1836 - Salisbury, Post 1835 - Oxford
  • Rural Deanery: Pre-1847 - Salisbury, Post-1846 - Reading
  • Poor Law Union: Wokingham
  • Hundred: Charlton; Sonning
  • Province: Canterbury