Church records have always been accessible for anyone wishing to research their family ancestry. In years gone by, enquiries to see church records would normally have been made to either the rector or the churchwardens. The older records due to their fragile nature are now held at the Records Office at Bow Lane, Preston.
In 1982 a booklet of all the burial records and details of the memorial inscriptions was researched and compiled by Mr John Mackie of the Rossendale Society for Genealogy and Heraldry (Preston Branch) in conjunction with Hoole Women’s Institute.
With the advent of computers, sorting of records by, for example surname, is now possible. With this in mind the work carried out in 1982 has been brought up to date by Stan Pickles and John Penrose and can now be viewed on the Lancashire Online Parish Clerk website. This website also includes details of Baptism, Marriage Banns and Marriages, again, all of which can be sorted by surname. Records from the majority of churches in Lancashire will also be found on this website.
If families are trying to locate the grave of a relation then contact should be made with the churchwardens who will help with the location. In the older section of the churchyard there are a large number of burials recorded which do not have a headstone or a known location.
Accuracy of records
The compiling of the online records for Baptism, Marriage Banns and Marriages has been achieved by teams of dedicated transcribers who have worked off photographic copies of the registers. These expert transcribers are based all over the world and for example some of our records were transcribed in New Zealand. The transcribers often have a difficult task trying to read different people’s handwriting and there is also the possibility that the person making the original record did not write the correct spelling of a name. If, while you are researching your family records you feel you have found an error then please, in the first instance, contact the Lancashire Parish Clerk website when corrections, where appropriate, will be made.
Burial Date / Date of Death
We would point out that in the case of burial records; the date shown is normally that of the burial rather than the date of death. There will normally only be a week or two difference in the dates but in the case of the internment of ashes this may be several weeks or months or even years after the person has died.
Link to The Lancashire Parish Clerk website:-