Little Warley, Essex Genealogy

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England  Gotoarrow.png  Essex Gotoarrow.png  Essex Parishes

St. Peter Little Warley Essex.jpg

Parish History

Warley, Little or Little Warley (St. Peter), is a parish, in the union of Billericay, hundred of Chafford, S division of Essex, it is 3½ miles S E of Brentwood.[1].

The Essex Regiment Chapel, Warley, Essex .jpg

Little Warley is a parish which for administrative purposes is the district in Brentwood, Essex. It is situated south of Thorndon Country Park.


Civil Registration

Birth, marriages and deaths were kept by the government, from July 1837 to the present day. The civil registration article tells more about these records. There are several Internet sites with name lists or indexes. A popular site is FreeBMD.

Church records

Contributor: Include here information for parish registers, Bishop’s Transcripts, non conformist and other types of church records, such as parish chest records. Add the contact information for the office holding the original records. Add links to the Family History Library Catalog showing the film numbers in their collection

Online images are available Seax - Essex Archives Online From the Essex Record Office St peter See also Essex Regiment Chapel.

Census records

Census records from 1841 to 1911 are available online. For access, see England Census Records and Indexes Online. Census records from 1841 to 1891 are also available on film through a Family History Center or at the Family History Library.

Poor Law Unions

Billericay Poor Law Union, Essex

No records of manorial courts survive for Little Warley. There are parish vestry minutes for 1718–71 and overseers' accounts and rates for 1749–95.
In the 18th century vestry meetings were held only once or twice a year, and the rector or, usually, the assistant curate took the chair. Five or six of the more substantial farmers normally attended the meetings, and they shared the parish offices among them. There were two churchwardens between 1719 and 1730, and despite a distinction drawn between the 'nominal' one and the one who was 'to act', both submitted accounts of their expenditure. There was only one warden after 1730; from 1733 he was appointed by the rector. From 1718 to 1750 there was a single overseer of the poor; thereafter two were often appointed, but the account was still submitted in the name of one. When Thomas Biggs died in 1757, his widow Elizabeth succeeded him as overseer. She again held the office in the years 1763–5 and 1779–81, but usually acted through her son, John Biggs. Little Warley had a single constable; at the end of the century this office was combined with that of church clerk, a post to which there were appointments in 1725 and from 1763. There were usually two surveyors.
The rateable value of the parish was £570 in 1749. It was continuously revised, and by 1794 was £926. By 1815 it had risen to £1,630, but it later declined, presumably because of the closing of the camp; in 1837 it was £1,122.
In the early 18th century Little Warley had few poor. In 1723 there were only four regular pensioners who were apparently paid monthly. Poor children were sometimes bound as apprentices within the parish, but the practice was unpopular, and in 1768 the vestry resolved to end it. Out-relief was given throughout the century. The homeless poor were boarded out, and since Little Warley had no workhouse of its own, two or three were sent to Great Warley workhouse from 1783. After the closure of Great Warley workhouse in 1830 Little Warley seems to have started using the house belonging to Chappington's charity as a poorhouse.
In the earlier 18th century medical treatment was provided on a casual basis, as in 1719 when Richard Twydell, surgeon, agreed to take 5 guineas if he cured a patient, but only 2 guineas if the patient died under his hand. About 1750, however, the parish appears to have retained a doctor for a decade or more at 2 guineas a year. Thereafter no regular retainer seems to have been paid until 1788.
In the three years 1782–5 approximately 86 per cent of the overseer's expenditure was spent on the poor. If the proportion was constant in the 18th century, about £43 a year was spent on the poor in the period 1749–80, and about £82 in the period 1780–95. From 1804 to 1817 expenditure on the poor averaged £195, in the worst years (1805–6 and 1812–13) reaching £281 and £265 respectively. Comparable figures are not available for later years, but it seems likely that an improvement in 1816–17 was followed by greatly increased distress among the poor in 1817–19. (In 1835 Little Warley became part of Billericay poor-law union.

From: 'Little Warley', A History of the County of Essex: Volume 7 (1978), pp. 174-180. URL: warley Date accessed: 03 February 2011.

Probate records

Records of wills, administrations, inventories, indexes, etc. were filed by the court with jurisdiction over this parish. Go to Essex Probate Records to find the name of the court having primary jurisdiction. Scroll down in the article to the section Court Jurisdictions by Parish.

Maps and Gazetteers

Maps are a visual look at the locations in England. Gazetteers contain brief summaries about a place.

Web sites


  1. 2. Lewis, Samuel A., Topographical Dictionary of England, publ. London: 1831 See at: