Seathwaite, Lancashire Genealogy

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Seathwaite Holy Trinity

Chapelry History

Seathwaite  Holy Trinity was a chapel of ease created in 1738 from, and lying within the boundaries of   Kirkby Ireleth, Lancashire Ancient Parish. See also List of Chapelries in Kirkby Ireleth Parish

The name Seathwaite derives from a combination of the old Norse words sef (sedges) and thveit (clearing) and may be taken to mean "Sedges clearing". The name, then spelled Seuthwayt, first appeared in written records dating from 1340.

Seathwaite is a village in the Duddon Valley  and since 1974 in the South Lakeland District of Cumbria. It lies within the Lake District National Park, and is part of the civil parish of Dunnerdale with Seathwaite,. The nearby Seathwaite Tarn (west of the Coniston Fells) takes its name from the village. The village is northeast of Hall Dunnerdale and southwest of the Tarn.

The Church of the Holy Trinity  was originally built in the early 16th century. William Wordsworth visited the church and dedicated one of his 35 Duddon Sonnets to the place and to the Reverend Robert Walker (1709–1802) who was parson at the church for 66 years. The church contains a memorial plaque to Walker, who was known as "Wonderful Walker" because of his long and exemplary ministry. Wordsworth refers to him in the sonnet as someone "whose good works formed an endless retinue". The church itself was completely rebuilt in 1874 due to its rundown state, it was reconsecrated in May 1875. The modern parish is in the Diocese of Carlisle.

"SEATHWAITE, a chapelry, in the township of Dunnerdale and Seathwaite, parish of Kirkby Ireleth, union of Ulverston, hundred of Lonsdale north of the Sands, N. division of the county of Lancaster, 17 miles north by west of Ulverston."[1]


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.

Lancashire Online Parish Clerks

An extremely useful resource for research in Lancashire Parishes

Church records

Online Records

Church of England

Seathwaite chapelry's registers of christenings, marriages and burials, along with those of the ancient parish of Kirkby Ireleth to which it is attached, have been mostly transcribed and are displayed online at the following web sites and ranges of years:

FS =
LOPC Lancashire Online Parish Clerk project
AC =
FREG = FreeReg

SEATHWAITE Chapelry (1684) Indexes
Baptisms Marriages Burials
FS 1684-1855 1737-1835  1737-1856 
LOPC None None None 
FMP None 1737-1836 None
KIRKBY IRELETH ST CUTHBERT PARISH (1681) Indexes (ancient parish containing SEATHWAITE Chapelry)
Baptisms Marriages Burials
FS 1697-1812 None  None
LOPC 1791-1838 1790-1838 1790-1838
FMP  None 1728-1837 None

For a full list of all those chapels surrounding Seathwaite and comprising the whole ancient parish of Kirkby Ireleth to which it was attached, be certain to see "Church Records" on the KIRKBY IRELETH PARISH page.

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

Ulverston Poor Law Union,Lancashire

Probate records

Records of wills, administrations, inventories, indexes, etc. were filed by the court with jurisdiction over this parish. Go to Lancashire 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.  A Topographical Dictionary of England by Samuel Lewis (1848), pp. 36-40. Adapted. Date accessed: 21 July 2010.