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Saltwood, St. Peter & St. Paul, Kent © Copyright Matthew Chadwick - - and licensed for reuse under
St. Peter & St. Paul, Saltwood Parish Church

Saltwood Parish

     A View of the Parish

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Saltwood is ecclesiastically in the diocese of Canterbury, in the archdeaconry of Canterbury and in the deanery of Elham.  The church is named for St. Peter & St. Paul with registers commencing 1560.

Saltwood is a village and a parish in Elham district, Kent.  The village stands near the Ashford and Dover railway, 3/4 of a mile north of Hythe, and 1-3/4 east-south-east of Westenhanger rail station;  commands a fine view;  and has a post office under Hythe.  The parish contains also the hamlets of Saltwood Green and Pellinge, and comprises 2,600 acres.  Real property in 1860, £4,470;  of which £91 are in quarries.  Population in 1861, 643.  Houses, 129.

The manor was given to the see of Canterbury, in 1036, by the Danish jarl Halfden.

Saltwood Castle, situated close to the village, is said to have been first erected in 488, by Eseus or Oisc, king of Kent;  was restored or rebuilt, in 1080, by Hugo de Montfort;  was held, for some time, by various knights, under the archbishops;  was the rendezvous of the four knights who planned the murder of Becket;  passed afterwards to the Crown, but was restored by King John to the archbishops;  underwent enlargement and embellishment, at great cost, by Archbishop Courtenay, in the time of Richard II;  was thence a residence of the archbishops till the time of Henry VIII;  went then to the Crown in exchange for other property;  was given by Henry VIII to the Clintons;  passed afterwards through various hands, and sank into decay;  is now a spacious and magnificent ruin, including great portion of the walls, an inner gate house with two fine circular towers, a chapel, and an outer gate house converted into a farmhouse;  and with Sandling Park, a fine neighbouring brick mansion, belongs now to W. Deedes, Esq..

Brockhill House has been the seat of the Tournay family since 1498.

The living is a rectory in the diocese of Canterbury.  Value £784, with a habitable glebe house.  Patron, the Archbishop of Canterbury.  The church is chiefly of the time of Edward III and was recently restored.  Charities, £31.

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

Saltwood 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 Saltwood: 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 antient 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,
also available at:
Saltwood Local Studies & Archives, Central Library, High Street, Saltwood, BR1 1EX, tel. 020 8461 7170, Email:
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 Currently under revision  
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
(Find a centre near you)
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 Saltwood   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
(Find a centre near you)
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, Saltwood area 1899-1930 Currently under revision  

Land Records

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


488 - Oisc, the first King of Kent, built Saltwood Castle on an earlier Roman site

774 - Uprising in Kent against King Offa of Mercia at the battle of Otford

797 - Danish and Viking invasions begin

805 - Kent once again a province of Mercia

832 - Vikings raid the Isle of Sheppey

850 - Vikings winter in Thanet

851 - King Athelstan defeats the Vikings at Sandwich

854 - Vikings winter on Isle of Sheppey

865 - Vikings control much of Eastern Kent

1026 - Saltwood Castle was passed to the church

1036 - manor given to the see of Canterbury

1080 - Saltwood Castle rebuilt or restored by Hugo de Montfort

1170 Dec 28 - Saltwood Castle is believed to have been the site of the plot of Thomas Becket's murder

1300s - a silver gilt seal was made for the church as it held a peculiar jurisdiction of the Archbishop of Canterbury. The seal was worn around the neck of the rector on a heavy red silk band when he presided over special courts exercising powers in the right of the Archbishop. The Archbishop appointed only certain rectors granting them full powers of jurisdiction and to hold courts with powers of life and death over offenders against ecclesiastical laws.

1348-9 - Black Death, possibly half the population of Kent dies

1381 - Peasant's Revolt

1407 - earthquake felt in Saltwood

1450 - Cade's Rebellion

1508 - another earthquake felt at Saltwood rendered Saltwood Castle uninhabitable

1552 - a record of four bells in the church tower

1554 - Wyatt's Rebellion

1723 - fifth bell, a tenor, added to the church tower

1840-1843 - construction of the Saltwood Tunnel under the direction of Frederick Walter Simms, F.R.A.S., F.C.S, M. in C.E., Engineer of the Works

1877 - British Museum declared Saltwood Seal (14thC) was in the possession of Mrs. Richard Dyneley-Dyneley, widow, of Bramhope Manor, Yorkshire

1888 - substantial restoration of Saltwood Castle to bring it back to a habitable state

1891 - Saltwood Seal (14thC) acquired by the British Museum as #1891.0520.1

1912 - church bells were recast into a heavier ring of six and rehung in a new frame by Mears and Stainbank

1955 - Saltwood Castle was purchased by Kenneth Clark and it remains now in that family

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   -   385
1811   -   1,066*
1821   -   570
1831   -   534
1841   -   520
1851   -   609
1861   -   643
1871   -   680
1881   -   693
1891   -   717
1901   -   836
1911   -   1,263
1921   -   1,434
*A large number of soldiers' wives and other camp followers were present in 1811.
The parish was effected by the operation of the Divided Parishes Acts, but the Registrar-General failed to obtain particulars of every such change. The changes which escaped notification were, however, probably small in area and with little, if any, population. Considerable difficulty was experienced both in 1891 and 1901 in tracing the results of changes effected in civil parishes under the provisions of these Acts. The figures in many instances must be regarded as partly estimates.
The ecclesiastical parish of the same name at the 1921 census was coextensive with the civil parish (or place).

Saltwood Distance to

London 58.4 mi.
Canterbury 13.7 mi.
Ashford 10.3 mi.
Chatham 30.6 mi.
Cranbrook 23.6 mi.
Dartford 45.7 mi.
Deptford 55.6 mi.
Dover 10.6 mi.
Faversham 18.3 mi.
Folkestone 3.8 mi.
Gravesend 39.4 mi.
Greenwich 53.9 mi.
Hythe 0.9 mi.
Maidstone 27.2 mi.
Margate 25.0 mi.
Milton Regis 23.8 mi.
Queenborough 27.4 mi.
Ramsgate 23.0 mi.
Rochester 33.7 mi.
Sandwich 18.1 mi.
Sheerness 29.0 mi.
Tenterden 16.8 mi.
Tunbridge 35.5 mi.
Woolwich 52.4 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
  • Protestation Rolls c1641-1643
  • Oaths of Allegiance and Supremacy 1662
  • Oaths of Allegiance c1720s

Military Records

Land Records
& Maps

Tax Lists

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

Other Records

Village Resources