Seaford, Sussex Genealogy

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Seaford St Leonard

Parish History

Seaford St Leonard is an Ancient parish.

SEAFORD (St. Leonard), a cinque port and parish,and formerly a representative borough and a market town, in the union of Eastbourn, locally in the hundred of Flexborough, rape of Pevensey, E. divisionof Sussex, 59¼ miles (S. S. E.) from London; containing953 inhabitants. This place is supposed to have been the Civitas Anderida of the Romans. The parish is situated on the road from Newhaven to Eastbourne, and is bounded on the east by the Cuckmere river, and on the south by the English Channel. Seaford was a considerable town, with four churches and chapels, until burnt by the French in one of those invasions to which the whole of the southern coast was anciently exposed;it has also declined greatly in extent from frequent encroachments of the sea. In 1824, an irruption, breaking through the barrier of shingle by which the land was defended, greatly damaged the town and neighbourhood. The cliffs are of singular formation, in some parts 300 feet in height; and on the summit are the remains of a circular camp. The river Ouse, the estuaryof which constituted the harbour, now empties itself into the sea at Newhaven, about three miles westward. Anact was passed in 1846, for a railway from Lewes to Newhaven and Seaford, eight and a half miles in length;and the Commissioners for inquiring into the expediency of forming harbours of refuge, have recommended that one (of four) should be constructed here.

The living is a discharged vicarage, annexed to that of Sutton, and valued in the king's books at £11. 15.: the tithes have been commuted for £240. The church is the nave of one of the old churches, with a tower, and a small chancel of later date; and although the modern repairs and additions have been numerous, and do not harmonize with the original style, the building still retains vestiges of beauty. Seaford gives the title of Baron to the familyof Ellis.

From: 'Seabeach - Seathwaite', A Topographical Dictionary of England (1848), pp. 36-40. URL: Date accessed: 01 May 2011.


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

Census records

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Probate records

Records of wills, administrations, inventories, indexes, etc. were filed by the court with jurisdiction over this parish. Go to Sussex 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

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Web sites

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