Court of the Bishop of Worcester (Episcopal Consistory)
Step By Step
1. First search each index (see below) to help you more quickly find the will or administration (admon), writing down each detail cited in the indexed entry.
2. Proceed to "Records" (below) to determine what probate records exist for this court.
3. Contact or visit the Worcestershire Record Office or, hire a professional record searcher to view these records on your behalf. Officials may send upon request a list of record searchers.
4. Visit The Family History Library or, one of its 4,500 satellite family history centers worldwide and search indexes to probate records; then with the information obtained from the index[es] you can search more quickly the original wills and admons also on microfilm via any centers near you.
Here's an early index to this courts' wills from 1451-1642, available online. A similar publication covering only 1451-1600 has been digitized and made searchable on Ancestry.com, accessible from home (with a paid subscription) or from a Family History Centre (for free).
Printed and Published Indexes
The original and microfilmed records above include the following published indexes:
- Calendar of Wills and Admons he Worcester Consistory Court of Worcester, 1451-1600 vol 31 Nendeln, Liechtenstein : Kraus Reprint, 1968
- Calendar of Wills and Admons he Worcester Consistory Court of Worcester, 1601-1652 vol 39 Nendeln, Liechtenstein : Kraus Reprint, 1968
- Wills and Admons
Indexes available at the Family History Library:
The Family History Library has the following calendars and indexes:
- A calendar of wills and administrations preserved in the consistory court of the bishop of Worcester, 1451-1601 vol. 31 edited by Edward Alexander Fry. Also available on microfilm, for circulating to family history centers
- A calendar of wills and administrations preserved in the consistory court of the bishop of Worcester, 1601-1652 vol. 39 edited by Edward Alexander Fry. Also available on microfilm, for circulating to family history centers
- Episcopal Consistory Court of the Bishop of Worcester Calendar of wills administrations, 1661-1858. Includes indexes.
- Calendar of wills and administrations, 1700-1858.
- Index of Probate from January-March 1660 for the Bishop of Worcester Original Wills.
- Index to Registered Wills 1672 -1739
- Wills Index 1661-1858
The original records are deposited at:
Worcester WR5 2NP
Tel: 44 (001905 766351 / 766355
Fax: 44 (0)1905 766363
Add information about the manuscript, printed and digital records in this location.
- Original wills, administrations and inventories, 1493-1652, 1660-1858
- Register copy wills, 1451-1739 (with gaps), 1833-1836
- Probate and administration act books, 1661-1858
Family History Library Records
Many of Worcestershire's Probate records have been microfilmed and are available at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City and through the many family history centers world-wide. These include:
- Original wills of the consistory court of Worcester, 1493-1857
- Registered wills, 1451-1739
- Administrations 1536-1668
- Act books of the consistory court of Worcester, 1661-1857
- Wills Box 1544-1700
This court had jurisdiction over most of the county of Worcestershire. It also had jurisdiction over the city of Warwick and the deaneries of Kineton and Warwick in southwest Warwickshire (here's an alphabetical List of Warwickshire Parishes that came under the Bishop of Worcester's pre-1837 court jurisdiction). This court (Bishop of Worcester) also held concurrent jurisdiction over parts of Gloucestershire diocese, prior to 1541 (though few Gloucestershire wills are found in its records).