Leek, Staffordshire Family History Guide

Leek is an Ancient Parish and a market town in the county of Staffordshire.

Other places in the parish include: Bradnop, Bradnop and Cawdry, Heaton, Leek Frith, Leekfrith, Stanley, Rudyard, Ruston James, Rushton Marsh, Ruston Spencer, and Longsdon.

Parish church: St. Edward the Confessor

Parish registers begin:

  • Parish registers: 1634
  • Bishop’s Transcripts: 1662

Nonconformists include: Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Independent/Congregational, Particular Baptist, Primitive Methodist, Roman Catholic, Society of Friends/Quaker, and Wesleyan Methodist.

Parishes adjacent to Leek

Historical Descriptions


The Imperial Gazetteer of England & Wales 1870

LEEK, a town, a township, a parish, a sub-district, and a district in Stafford. The town occupies the summit and declivities of a pleasant eminence, on the left bank of the river Churnet, nearly in the centre of a deep but spacious valley, adjacent to the North Staffordshire railway and near the Caldon canal, 5 miles from the boundary with Cheshire, and 13½ SSE of Macclesfield. It dates from very early times; was held by Algar, the Saxon; passed to the Norman Earls of Chester; and was given by them to Delacres abbey, which they founded near it in 1220, and which has left some remains. A few ancient British weapons have been found at it; Thomas Parker, born in 1666, who became Earl of Macclesfield and Lord Chancellor of England, was a native; and the Pretender passed through in 1745. The town contains several spacious well built streets; and is one of the most handsome in the county. The town hall was built on the site of an ancient market cross, in 1806, at a cost of £900. The public hall was built in 1862. A literary and mechanics' institute was established in 1837; and a new building for it, at a cost of about £700, was erected in 1862. The parish church, or church of St. Edward the Confessor, is early English; and has a pinnacled tower. The churchyard contains a dilapidated ancient cross, called Danish; and commands a very fine view toward the hills in the N and the W, including a rocky mountain, called the Cloud, which occasions sunset, at the summer solstice, to appear double. St. Luke's church was built in 1846. The new Independent chapel was erected in 1864, at a cost of about £4,000; is in the decorated English style, of Laddridge and Hollington stone; has a large five light window, and a tower and spire 120 feet high; and contains 600 sittings. There are chapels also for Wesleyans, Primitive Methodists, New Connexion Methodists, and Roman Catholics. There are a grammar school, national schools, a cottagehospital built in 1869, a dispensary, and alms houses and other charities £379. The town has a postoffice under Stoke-upon-Trent, a railway station with telegraph, two banking offices, four chief inns, and a police station; and is a seat of petty sessions and county courts, and a polling place. A weekly market is held on Wednesday; a cattle market, on every alternate Wednesday from 28 July to 25 December; cheese markets, on the second Monday of March and the third Monday of September and November; and fairs, on the Wednesday before 13 February, Easter-Wednesday, 18 May, WhitWednesday, 3 and 28 July, the Wednesday after 10 October, 13 November, and the Wednesday after Christmas. The twisting and doubling of silk, the sewing of silk, and the making of twist ferrets, galloons, handkerchiefs, shawls, buttons, ribbons, sarcenets, and broadsilks are largely carried on. The town's limits include portions of the townships of Leek, Leek-Frith, and Tittesworth; and were defined by a local improvement act of 1855. Pop. in 1851, 8,877; in 1861, 10,045. Houses, 2,219. The township bears the name of Leek and Lowe. Real property, £17,640; of which £300 are in gas works. Pop. in 1851, 8,602; in 1861, 9,057. Houses, 1,983. Pop. of the part within the town, 8,859. Houses, 1,950.—The parish contains also the townships of Leek-Frith, Tittesworth, Bradnop, Onecote, Rudyard, Heaton, Rushton-James, Rushton-Spencer, and Endon-withLongsdon and Stanley. Acres, 34,370. Real property, £54,526; of which £31 are in quarries. Pop. in 1851. 12,301; in 1861, 14,326. Houses, 3,064. The manor belongs to the Earl of Macclesfield. The chief seats are Highfield, Ashcombe Park, Ashenhurst, Bassford Hall, Westwood Hall, Ballhaye, and Haregate. The parochial living and also the living of St. Luke are vicarages in the diocese of Lichfield. Value of each, £300. Patron of the vicarage, the Bishop of Lichfield; of tne p. curacy, alternately the Crown and the Bishop. The chapelries of Endon, Meerbrook, Rushton, and Onecotecum-Bradnop, also are separate benefices. The sub-district contains only the Leek, Tittesworth, Bradnop, Onecote, and Rudyard townships of Leek parish, but contains also the parish of Horton. Pop., 12,341. Houses, 2,648. The district comprehends also the sub-district of Leek-Frith, containing the townships of Leek-Frith, Heaton, Rushton-James, and RushtonSpencer; the sub-district of Norton, containing the township of Endon-with-Longsdon and Stanley, and two townships of Norton-in-the-Moors; and the subdistrict of Longnor, containing the parishes of Grindon, Wetton, and Sheen, a township of Mayfield, and six townships of Alstonefield. Acres, 72,893. Poor-rates in 1863, £8,640. Pop. in 1851, 23,031; in 1861, 24,806. Houses, 5,263. Marriages in 1863, 135; births, 854, of which 76 were illegitimate; deaths, 587, of which 218 were at ages under 5 years, and 16 at ages above 85. Marriages in the ten years 1851-60, 1,513; births, 8,270; deaths, 5,733. The places of worship, in 1851, were 22 of the Church of England, with 6,872 sittings; 2 of Independents, with 540 s.; 25 of Wesleyan Methodists, with 4,039 s.; 1 of New Connexion Methodists, with 262 s.; 7 of Primitive Methodists, with 872 s.; and 1 of Roman Catholics, with 181 s. The schools were 25 public day schools, with 1,593 scholars; 30 private day schools, with 610 s.; and 44 Sunday schools, with 4,600 s. The workhouse is in Leek township, on the London road; and, at the census of 1861, had 94 inmates.
Source: The Imperial Gazetteer of England & Wales [Wilson, John M]. A. Fullarton & Co. N. d. c. [1870-72].

Leek Frith

Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales Circa 1870

Leek-Frith, a township and a sub-district in Leek parish and district, Stafford. The township includes part of Leek town; extends thence to the N; contains a considerable village of its own name; and contains also the church of Meerbrook. Real property, £7,360. Pop., 763. Houses, 150. – The sub-district contains also three other townships. Pop., 1,790. Houses, 362.
Source: The Imperial Gazetteer of England & Wales [Wilson, John M]. A. Fullarton & Co. N. d. c. [1870-72].

Parish Records

FamilySearch Historical Records

Church history

Dieulacres Abbey, Leek, Staffordshire

Church records

Baptisms, 1831-1837
Births and baptisms, 1808-1837
Births, baptisms and burials, 1797-1837
Bishop's transcripts for Endon, 1805-1861
Bishop's transcripts for Leek, 1662-1853
Bishop's transcripts for Meerbrook, 1791-1863
Bishop's transcripts for Onecote, 1782-1834
Chartulary of Dieulacres Abbey
Church records for St. Mary, Leek, 1830-1920
Church records, 1826-1837
England, Staffordshire, Leek, parish registers : All Saints, 1887-1900
Leek parish register
Leek parish registers
Parish register, Leek, England, marriages and christenings
Parish registers for Endon, 1730-1949
Parish registers for Leek, 1634-1837
Parish registers for Meerbrook, 1744-1900
Parish registers for Onecote, 1755-1885
Parish registers for St. Edward's Church, Leek, 1792-1973
Parish registers for St. Luke's Church, Leek, 1848-1906
Register of marriages for the Leek Monthly Meeting (Stafford), 1679-1776

Church records - Indexes

Parish printout of Leek parish, Staffordshire, England (1562-1853)
Parish register printouts of Leek, Stafford, England (Independent Church, Derby Street Chapel) ; christenings, 1785-1837
Parish register printouts of Leek, Stafford, England (Independent Church, Union Street Chapel) ; christenings, 1829-1837
Parish register printouts of Leek, Stafford, England (Wesleyan Methodist Church, Mount Pleasant Chapel, Leek Circuit) ; christenings, 1808-1837
Parish register printouts of Leek, Stafford, England ; christenings, 1800-1840
Parish register printouts of Rushton-Spencer, Stafford, England ; christenings, 1693-1744
Parish register printouts of Rushton-Spencer, Stafford, England ; christenings, 1741-1812

Business records and commerce

The account ledgers of a Leek silk manufacturer : a mystery solved
The silk factory in the Globe Yard


Monument and tombstone inscriptions, St. Laurence, Rushton Spencer, Staffordshire
Monument/tombstone inscriptions, St. Matthews Church, Meerbrook, Staffordshire


Census returns for Leek, 1841-1891

Census - 1871 - Indexes

1871 census for North Staffordshire : surname and folio index

Description and travel - Guidebooks

Leek and its industries : with notes on Rudyard and the Dane and Churnet Valleys : the official guide
Leek and its industries : with notes on Rudyard, the Leek and Manifold Light Railway, and the Dane and Churnet Valleys : the official guide


A history of the ancient parish of Leek in Staffordshire : including Horton, Cheddleton, and Ipsotnes


A history of the ancient parish of Leek, in Staffordshire
A history of the county of Stafford : Leek and the Moorlands
Olde Leeke : historical, biographical, anecdotal and archaeological, second series

Land and property

Chartulary of Dieulacres Abbey
Family collections: Rudyard


Family collections: Rudyard

Military records - Napoleonic Wars, 1800-1815

French connections : Napoleonic prisoners of war on parole in Leek 1803-1814


The silk factory in the Globe Yard


England, Staffordshire, Leek, Bradnop, school records, 1877-1916
England, Staffordshire, Leek, Bridgetown, school records, 1914-1915
England, Staffordshire, Leek, Longsdon, school records, 1910-1917
England, Staffordshire, Leek, Onecote, school records, 1873-1915
England, Staffordshire, Leek, school records, 1864-1915


Land tax returns for Leek, 1781-1831


Historical Maps


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.

Badnall Rich., Leek, Staffordshire, banker & silk manufacturer, June 19, 1827.

Badnall Richard, jun.; and Francis Gybbon Spilsbury; Leek, Staffordshire, silk manufacturers and dyers, Dec. 19, 1826.

Badnall Richard, jun.; Francis Gybbon Spilsbury; and Henry Cruso; Leek, Staffordshire, silk manufacturers and dyers, Feb. 24, 1827.

Barlow John, Leek, Staffordshire, victualler, June 1, 1832.

Braddock Samuel, Leek, Staffordshire, innholder, Feb. 13, 1829.

Brunt Isaac, Leek, Staffordshire, button manufacturer, June 16, 1837.


  • County: Staffordshire
  • Civil Registration District: Leek
  • Probate Court: Court of the Bishop of Lichfield (Episcopal Consistory)
  • Diocese: Lichfield
  • Rural Deanery: Leek
  • Poor Law Union: Leek
  • Hundred: North Totmonslow; South Totmonslow
  • Province: Canterbury