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Canterbury - All Saints Parish

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Canterbury - All Saints

Canterbury, All Saints is, ecclesiastically, in the diocese of Canterbury, in the archdeaconry of Canterbury and in the deanery of Canterbury.  The church is named All Saints with original parish registers commencing 1559.

All Saints, [in the High Street], is a rectory in the city of Canterbury [included] with the rectories of St. Mary in the Castle and St. Mildred.  Value £150.  Patron, the Lord Chancellor.  It is part of the registration district of Canterbury and is in the borough of Canterbury.1

This church was later united with the church and living of St. Mildred's [29 September 1684], already having been united with the church of St. Mary de Castro.2

All Saints church is situated on the north side of the High-street, almost adjoining to Kingsbridge. It is a building, which, notwithstanding the late repair of it, has no very sightly appearance, being built of rubble stone, and covered with plaister; seemingly of about King Edward III's reign. It consists of two isles and two chancels, having a turret at the west end of the south side, new built in 1769, in which is a clock and only one bell.2

The old steeple projected so far into the street, that when Kingsbridge adjoining was widened at the above time, for the accommodation of the public, it was found necessary to take down the steeple of this church, and to re-build it as at present.2

This church has no monuments, and not many inscriptions in it. It is situated so very low, close to the river side, that it is exceeding damp.2

It appears by the survey of the King's commissioners, taken anno 2 Edward VI that there were lands given by Thomas Fryer, by his Will for a yearly obit, to be kept within this church for ever, and that there was rent given by John Coleman, by his Will, for another obit for the space of twenty years, from 1536. The survey referred to is printed at the end of Somner, by Battely.2

This church's cemetery or church-yard was acquired and laid to it but in modern times, as it were, says Somner, for in King Henry III's time, and afterwards in King Edward III's time too, it was in private hands, as appears by several deeds of those times, and did anciently belong, in part at least, to Eastbridge hospital. It is situated on the north side of the church, and being on higher ground, has many tomb and head stones remaining in it.2

The patronage of this church, which is a rectory, was part of the possessions of the abbot and convent of St. Augustine, with which it continued till the general dissolution of monasteries in the reign of Henry VIII in the 30th year of which, it was, with the rest of the possessions of it, surrendered into the King's hands, where it has remained ever since, the King being at this time patron of it. This church, with that of St. Mary de Castro, before united to it, was in the year 1684, united by archbishop Sancrost to that of St. Mildred, in this city, with the consent of the mayor and aldermen and justices of the peace of it, and of the King, patron of it.2

In the ancient taxation, in King Richard II's time, this church was valued at four pounds per annum, but on account of the slenderness of its income, was not charged to the tenth. [See Thorn, col. 2169.] This rectory is valued in the King's books at seven pounds per annum. In 1588 here were one hundred and thirty-five communicants. In 1640 it was valued at thirty pounds, communicants one hundred and five.2

There is a terrier of this rectory, but without date, in the registry of the Consistory Court of Canterbury.2

John Coleman, of this parish, who lies buried in our Lady's chapel, in this church, by his Will anno 1535, gave his garden, which lay opposite the parsonage of it, to the parsons of it and their successors for ever.2

St. Mary de Castro church, so called from its situation near the castle, and to distinguish it from the other St. Mary churches in this city, has long been desolated, the chancel only of it being left standing, to the repair of which one Roger Ridley, by his Will anno 1470, gave four pounds [See Battely's Somner, p. 181.]. Time was, when it was as absolute a parish church as any about this city, and though before the reformation it seems not to have been in a very flourishing condition, yet that change in religious ceremonies was very probably the cause of this church's still further decay and desolation; for offerings, altarages, and such profits, of which this benefice chiefly consisted, and from which the maintenance of the incumbent was in great measure drawn, being by this change abolished, there was not from other matters a sufficient competency left for him, so that it became soon afterwards deserted, and was united to St. Mildred's, and has been ever since esteemed as part of that parish. However, Mr. Somner says, a little before his time, St. Mary de Castro was again divorced from St. Mildred's, by having a particular incumbent presented and inducted into it; but this seems to have been an only instance, as from that time no one has thought it worth their attention, and it has consequently remained united to St. Mildred's, the same as before. To St. Mary de Castro was united, in 1449, the neighbouring small church of St. John, long since likewise desolated, a further account of which will be given hereafter. There was in 1484 a cemetery belonging to St. Mary de Castro, for Alice, wife of Michael a Wood, of Wincheap, by her Will proved that year, ordered to be buried in it. In the ancient taxation, St Mary de Castro was valued at 66s. 8d. but on account of the slenderness of its income, was not charged to the tenth. [Thorn, col. 2169.]2

The abbot and convent of St. Augustine were patrons of this church of St. Mary, before the dissolution of that monastery, [Battely's Somner, p. 165.] since which the patronage of it has of right become vested in the crown, and continues so at this time, the crown having presented to it so late as the year 1637. The following is a list of such rectors of it as I have met with.2

  • Richard -, in 1231. [See Battely's Somner, p. 77.]

  • Thomas Pycard, anno 27 king Edward I. [See Prynne, p. 824.]

  • Simon -, anno 1321 [See Battely's Somner appendix p. 33.]

  • Richard Allen. S. T. P. July 26, 1637. He was presented to St. Mildred's rectory in 1601, to which he had a second presentation on June 28, 1637, after which as appears before, he had next month a presentation to this church. See Rymer's Fæd. vol. xz. p. 207.

St. John the Baptist's church, called from the slenderness of its income, St. John the Poor, had a parish called St. John's belonging to it. It stood much about the upper end of that lane leading from Castlestreet, called St. John's-lane.2

This church coming to ruin, was, with the consent of the patrons, the abbot and convent of St. Augustine, united in 1349, by the prior and convent of Christ-church, ordinaries during a vacancy of the see, to the church of St. Mary de Castro before mentioned; the profits of the former then amounting to forty shillings, and the latter to five marcs; the church of St. Mary being made the mother church, by virtue of which union, John Skippe, clerk, was admitted to both churches, on Nov. 11, 1349. The inquisition for the uniting of the churches of St. Mary de Castro and St. John, called St. John the poor, is dated 5 kal. Julii, anno 1349, and in Regist. Eccles. Christi. Cant. fol. 46b. In the ancient valuation, the church of St. John was valued at 60s. 8d. but on account of the slenderness of its income, was not charged to the tenth. [Thorn, col. 2169.]2

After which, I find no further mention of this parish church of St. John; but it seems to have been included in that of St. Mary de Castro, and as such united with it to the church of All Saints, as has been already mentioned before. The remains of it were for a long time used as a malthouse, or in tenements, and continue so at present. One Henry Plaire was killed by a fall from a ladder, anno 5 Edward III as he was at work in tiling St. John's church, in Canterbury, as is recorded in the crown rolls of that year.2

The book of St. Laurence's hospital makes mention of some portions of tithes, belonging to this church, by the following entry, viz. That the hospital received all the tithes of four acres of land in Market field, and the rector of St. John, in Canterbury, received of two acres, eight sheass; and of two other acres, seven sheass, in all one copp. And the hospital received two parts of the tithes of six acres of land lying at Stone street, towards the south, and a narrow way toward the north. And the rector of St. John, in Canterbury, received a third part of the tithes. [See Battely's Somner. p. 166.]2

Eastbridge hospital was founded either by Lanfranc or by A'Becket, originally to receive "wayfaring and hurt men;" maintains inmates, and gives out-door relief; is connected with a school for 20 children, founded by Whitgift; and has an income of £512.2

1 John Marius Wilson, comp.  The Imperial Gazatteer of England and Wales. (London, England: A. Fullerton & Co., 1870).

2 Edward Hasted, Canterbury: The churches within the city and suburbs, in The History and Topographical Survey of the County of Kent: Volume 11 (Canterbury, 1800), pp. 209-288

Canterbury - All Saints Bibliography

-- various. 'Archaeologia Cantiana'. Publisher: Kent, England: Kent Archaeological Society, various dates.  [Note:  The following volumes can be found on  1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 (1876), 11, 12, 13 (1880), 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 32, 34, 35, vol. 1907 supplement.]

  • General references to Canterbury - All Saints: vol. , pp.
  • Currently in revision

Great Britain, Public Record Office. 'Calendar of the patent rolls preserved in the Public Record Office--Edward II, Vol. 1. 1307-1313'Each volume has own index. Publisher: Genealogical Society of Utah d.b.a Historical Books on FamilySearch;

Great Britain, Public Record Office. 'Inquisitions and assessments relating to feudal aids : with other analogous documents preserved in the Public Record Office, A. D. 1284-1431', Vol. 3. Publisher: Genealogical Society of Utah d.b.a Historical Books on FamilySearch;

Great Britain, Exchequer. 'The book of fees commonly called testa de nevill, pt. 3'. The Book of fees contains information about the holdings of feudal tenants. Publisher: Genealogical Society of Utah d.b.a Historical Books on FamilySearch;

Hall, Hubert, 1857-1944. 'The Red book of the Exchequer - Liber rubeus de Scaccario, Vol. 3'. The Red book of the Exchequer was a register intended to preserve important documents comprising charters, statutes of the realm, public acts (Placita), private deeds and ordinances, correspondence. Publisher: Genealogical Society of Utah d.b.a Historical Books on FamilySearch;

Glencross, Reginald Morshead. 'Administrations in the Prerogative Court of Canterbury, Vol. 1. 1559-1571'. Publisher: Genealogical Society of Utah d.b.a Historical Books on FamilySearch;

Hasted, Edward. 'The History and Topographical Survey of the County of Kent; Containing the ancient and present state of it, civil and ecclesiastical; collected from public records, and other authorities: illustrated with maps, views, antiquities, etc. The second edition, improved, corrected, and continued to the present time'. 12 volumes. Publisher: Canterbury: Printed by W. Bristow, 1797-1801. URL: British History Online

Hussey, Arthur. 'Notes on the churches in the counties of Kent, Sussex, and Surrey, mentioned in Domesday book, and those of more recent date'. Publisher: London J.R. Smith,(1852).

Letters, Dr. Samantha. 'Kent', Gazetteer of Markets and Fairs in England and Wales to 1516 (2005).  URL: British History Online.

Page, William, 1861-1934, ed.. 'The Victoria history of the county of Kent'. Publisher: London: Constable (1908).  URL: British History Online

Sharp, J. E. E. S., ed.. 'Inquisitions Post Mortem, Edward I, File 39', Calendar of Inquisitions Post Mortem, Volume 2: Edward I. Published:(1906), pp. 315-323.  URL: British History Online.

Sharp, J. E. E. S., ed.. 'Inquisitions Post Mortem, Henry III, File 45', Calendar of Inquisitions Post Mortem, Volume 1: Henry III. Published:(1904), pp. 296-302.  URL: British History Online.

Location of Records

The following list of records is not intended to be exhaustive.  There are many records that are awaiting discovery in archive offices throughout Kent and England.  This list is intended only to set out those records that are available via at least two relatively easy-to-access avenues.  If you have used or discover a record that would be of benefit to other researchers, that is not on this list, please send me an email with the details of the archive - name, address and archival call number.

Census | Church of England | Non-Conformist | Parish chest | Workhouse and Poor Law | Land | Assizes and Sessions | School



Date The National Archives, Ruskin Avenue,
Kew, Richmond,
LDS Family History Centre
(Find a centre near you)
and indexed online at:
6 June 1841 Currently under revision  
30 Mar 1851 Currently under revision  
30 Mar 1851 census name index & images Currently under revision  
7 Apr 1861 Currently under revision  
2 Apr 1871 Currently under revision  
3 Apr 1881 Currently under revision  
5 Apr 1891 Currently under revision  
31 Mar 1901 RG 13/785 - also online at  
2 Apr 1911 Currently under revision  
2 Apr 1911 RG 78/139 - Census Enumerator's Summary Books online only and other subscription sites none

Church Records, Church of England

Record Type Dates Archive 1
Corresponding LDS Family History Library film numbers
(Find a centre near you)
Parish Register   Currently under revision  
Bishop's transcripts   Currently under revision  
CMB transcripts   Currently under revision  
Parish Registers, transcribed by Thomas Colyer-Fergusson   Currently under revision  

Church Records, Non-Conformist

Record Type Dates Archive 1
Corresponding LDS Family History Library film numbers
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Particular Baptist Chapel, Nonconformist Return   Currently under revision  
Methodist Church Registers   Currently under revision  

Parish chest records

Record Type Dates Archive 1
Corresponding LDS Family History Library film numbers
(Find a centre near you)
Parish Council Minutes   Currently under revision  
Removal orders out of Canterbury - All Saints   Currently under revision  
Settlement Examinations, Minute book   Currently under revision  
Overseers' Accounts   Currently under revision  
Return of Churchwardens, constables and defaulters     
Tithe Apportionment Files      
Poor Rate books   Currently under revision  

Workhouse and Poor Law Records

Record Type Dates Archive 1
Corresponding LDS Family History Library film numbers
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Admission & Discharge books   This section currently under revision  
Guardians' Minutes      
Births   Currently under revision  
Deaths   Currently under revision  
Religious creed registers   Currently under revision  
Apprentice Register      
Registers of lunatics      
Letters books      
Vaccination registers 1899-1930 Currently under revision  

Land Records

Record Type Dates Archive 1
Corresponding LDS Family History Library film numbers
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Land tax assessments 1780-1831 Currently under revision  
Land tax assessments 1875-1876 Currently under revision  
Land tax assessments 1889-1890 Currently under revision  
Rates and Duties - Houses, Windows, Lights   Currently under revision  
Manorial Court rolls   Currently under revision  
War Damage Files 1939-1962 Centre for Kentish Studies, Maidstone, Kent, no.: Finding Aid at CKS-DRb/RW 123 None

Assizes and Sessions Records
(poor laws, jail terms, oaths, and other municipal and public records)

Record Type Dates Archive 1
Corresponding LDS Family History Library film numbers
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Hearth tax   Currently under revision  
Victuallers Recognizances   Currently under revision  
Churchwarden's Presentments   Currently under revision  
Parish rate books   Currently under revision  

School Records

Record Type Dates Archive 1
Corresponding LDS Family History Library film numbers
(Find a centre near you)
    Currently under revision  


Coming Soon

Church Registers


Parish Chest

  • Settlement Certificates
  • Removal Orders
  • Bastardy Examinations
  • Parish-assisted Immigrants
  • Churchwarden's Accounts
  • Overseer's Accounts
  • Surveyor's Accounts
  • Workhouse Records
  • Pew Rents
  • Donors' Rolls
  • Vestry Minutes
  • Bishops' Visitations
  • Parish Magazines
  • Parish Histories


Total Population

1801   -   377
1811   -   382
1821   -   454
1831   -   419
1841   -   377
1851   -   368
1861   -   457
1871   -   412
1881   -   349
1891   -   329
1901   -   315
1911   -   n/a
1921   -   n/a

Canterbury - All Saints Distance to

London mi.
Canterbury mi.
Ashford mi.
Bromley mi.
Chatham mi.
Cranbrook mi.
Dartford mi.
Deptford mi.
Dover mi.
Faversham mi.
Folkestone mi.
Gravesend mi.
Greenwich mi.
Hythe mi.
Maidstone mi.
Margate mi.
Milton Regis mi.
Queenborough mi.
Ramsgate mi.
Rochester mi.
Sandwich mi.
Sheerness mi.
Tenterden mi.
Tunbridge mi.
Woolwich mi.


Municipal & Public Records

  • Mayors
  • Town Clerks
  • Recorders
  • Chamberlains
  • M.P.s
  • Jurats, Aldermen and Common Councilmen
  • Electoral Register
  • Freeholders
  • Freemen Index
  • Freeman's Roll
  • Masters Index
  • Pubs, Taverns, Inns, Alehouses
  • Victuallers

Wills & Estate Records

  • AD index 1448-1857
  • CC index 1448-1857
  • PCC 1338-1858
  • PPR 1858-1925
  • Depositions

Court Records

  • Gaol Returns
  • Quarter Sessions
  • Transportations
  • Summons for Pavement Repairs
  • Tithe Apportionment c1830s
  • Protestation Rolls c1641-1643
  • Oaths of Allegiance and Supremacy 1662
  • Oaths of Allegiance c1720s

Military Records

Land Records
& Maps

  • Parish Map
  • Victoria County History
  • Deeds, Mortgages, etc.
  • Rated Property Returns
  • Returns of owners of land, 1873
  • Manor Court Baron
  • Manor Tenancy Rolls
  • Manors, Castles & Holdings of Significance

Tax Lists

  • Poll Tax
  • Hearth Tax
  • Window Tax
  • Hair Powder Tax
  • Land Tax Assessments 1780-1831
  • Land Tax Assessments 1799-1805

Other Records

Village Resources