Besford Worcestershire Family History Guide

St Peter's Church Besford Worcestershire
St Peter's Church Besford Worcestershire

Besford is a village, and was formerly a chapelry in the parish of St. Andrew, Pershore, but in 1865 it was united with Defford as one ecclesiastical district.

Parish church: St. Peter

Parish registers begin: FamilySearch states: 1539; Littlebury's Directory 1879 states: 1750.

Besford church is unique in this county for being a timber-framed structure, probably erected during the Perpendicular period, as the western window presents a curious specimen of the style, its mullions and tracery being of wood.

Parishes adjacent to Besford

Parish History

The Imperial Gazetteer of England & Wales 1870

Besford, a chapelry in St. Andrew-Pershore parish, Worcester; on the river Avon and on the Birmingham and Gloucester railway, 2 miles WSW of Pershore. Post Town, Pershore. Acres, 1,300. Real property, £2,025. Pop., 164. Houses, 34. Besford Court here is the seat of Sir T. G. S. Sebright, Bart. The living is a p. curacy, annexed to the vicarage of St. Andrew-Pershore, in the diocese of Worcester. The church is old, and has a tower.

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

Besford, a parochial chapelry in the upper division of the hund, and union of Pershore, county of Worcester; 2½ miles west by south of Pershore, near the Avon, and on the line of the Birmingham and Gloucester railway. Living, a curacy subordinate to the vicarage of St Andrew's, Pershore. There is a daily school here. Pop., in 1801, 126; in 1831,146. Houses 31. Acres 1,300. A.P. £1,991. Poor rates, in 1837, £76.

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

Leonard's Gazetteer of England and Wales 1850

Besford, 2½ m. W. Pershore. P. 179
Source: Leonard's Gazetteer of England and Wales; Second Edition; C. W. Leonard, London; 1850.

Worcestershire Delineated C. and J. Greenwood 1822

Besford – a hamlet and chapelry in the parish and hundred of Pershore; 2 miles W.S.W from Pershore, and 104 from London; containing 29 inhabited houses. Population, 1801, 126 – 1811, 127 – 1821, 154.

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.

Parish Records

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Directories

See also Defford Worcestershire Family History Guide

Besford Littlebury Worcestershire Directory 1879

Besford is a village, and was formerly a chapelry in the parish of St. Andrew, Pershore, but in 1865 it was united with Defford as one ecclesiastical district. It is 1 ½ miles N. of Defford station, 4 S.W. of Pershore station (about 3 from the town of Pershore), and 6 N.E. of Upton-on-Severn; is in the eastern division of the county, hundred of Upper Pershore, union, petty sessional division, polling district, and county court district of Pershore; is assessed to the county rate at £2,300. The acreage is 1,360; population in 1861, 164; in 1871, 176, with 34 inhabited houses. The Bristol and Birmingham branch of the Midland line runs through the parish. Sir Thomas Gage Saunders Sebright, Bart., is lord of the manor and owner of the whole parish. The soil is clay and sand; subsoil, stone and gravel; chief crops are wheat, beans, barley, and fruit. The united vicarage of Defford-cum-Besford is in the diocese and archdeaconry of Worcester and rural deanery of Pershore; yearly value £170, in the patronage of the Dean and Chapter of Westminster, and held by the Rev. George Swinden, M.A., Brasenose College, Oxford, who was instituted in 1865, and resides at Defford. Besford church is unique in this county for being a timber-framed structure, probably erected during the Perpendicular period, as the western window presents a curious specimen of the style, its mullions and tracery being of wood! The building consists of a chancel, nave, bell-cot or small tower at the west gable, and wooden south porch; the chancel is Early English. The panelled mural monuments to the ancient family of Harewell are singularly interesting, and there are memorials of the Sebrights. Here also are a rood screen, triptich, and other things highly interesting to the ecclesiologist. The church having been for some time past in a state of gradual decay, a thorough reparation and restoration has been decided upon, at an estimated cost of £1,600, and subscriptions are now being obtained for that purpose. The register dates from 1750. Besford Court, the ancient seat of the Harewells and Sebrights, is at present void. It has the original gates and porter’s lodge remaining; and an ancient tithe-barn is near the house. Postal Regulations. – Letters are received through Pershore. The letter-box is cleared at 5 p.m. daily (Sundays excepted). Postal telegrams may be sent from and received at Defford railway station. Pershore is the nearest money-order office and post town.
St. Peter’s Church. – Rev. George Swinden, M.A., Vicar; Joseph Checketts, Esq., Churchwarden; Thomas Houghton, Parish Clerk.
Carrier to Worcester. – Joseph Cockbill (from Birlingham) passes through on Saturdays; stops at the Union Inn, Carden street, Worcester.

PRIVATE RESIDENT.

Checketts Joseph, Esq.

AGRICULTURAL.

Checketts Jos., farmer, near the Church
Day George, farmer
Evans Thomas, farmer
Houghton Charles, farm bailiff for Joseph Checketts, Esq.
Houghton Thomas, parish clerk
Revill John, farmer
Tovey Frederick, farmer, The Bridge

Source: Littlebury, Littlebury’s Directory and Gazetteer of Worcester & District, Third Edition. Printed by Ballantyne, Hanson & Co. 1879

Besford Billings Directory of Worcestershire 1855

Besford, a chapelry in the parish of St. Andrew, Pershore, is situate about 3 miles from that town, and contained in 1851 a population of 177 inhabitants. The Chapel is a small old building, with tower and two bells. The living is in the gift of the Dean and Chapter of Westminster. Rev. Thomas Whitaker, Curate; Mr. William Davies, Clerk. Service – 11 a.m. and 3 p.m., alternately with Defford.

DIRECTORY

Woodward Thomas, Esq., Besford Court
Bullock James, farmer, New Farm
Bullock William, farmer, Besford Bridge
Checketts Joseph, farmer
Evans Thomas, farmer
Davies Thomas, shoe maker
Tovey John, The Executors of, farmers

Source: Billings Directory of Worcestershire 1855

Besford Lewis Worcestershire Directory 1820

Baylis Henry, farmer
Bullock John, farmer
Checketts Giles, farmer
Checketts Joseph, farmer
Fenwick N. L. Esq.
Tovey John, farmer
Tovey Elizabeth, farmer

Source: S Lewis Worcestershire General and Commercial Directory for 1820.

Administration

  • County: Worcestershire
  • Civil Registration District: Pershore
  • Probate Court: Court of the Bishop of Worcester (Episcopal Consistory)
  • Diocese: Worcester
  • Rural Deanery: Pershore
  • Poor Law Union: Pershore
  • Hundred: Pershore
  • Province: Canterbury
  • Petty Sessional division: Pershore
  • Polling District: Pershore
  • County Court District: Pershore