Shireshead, Lancashire Genealogy

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Shireshead St James contributor Alexander P Kapp

Chapelry History

Shireshead St James (formerly St Paul) was an ancient chapel of ease by 1520 lying within the boundaries of Cockerham, Lancashire Ancient Parish.

Other places in the parish include: Claverley.

The chapelry of St Paul was founded in 1520 but closed in 1889 when the parish of St James was created.

"SHIRESHEAD, or Shirehead, a chapelry in Garstang and Cockerham parishes, Lancashire; on the river Wyre, 1¾ mile N by E of Scorton r. station, and 4 north by east of Garstang."[1]
Shireshead St Paul contributor Alexander P Kapp.jpg

Here is an 1848 historical perspective from the British topographer, Samuel A. Lewis on Clevely:

"CLEVELY, a township, partly in the parish of Cockerham, hundred of Lonsdale south of the Sands, but chiefly in the parish of Garstang, hundred of Amounderness, union of Garstang, N. division of the county of Lancaster, 4¼ miles north by east of Garstang. At Shire's Head, or Shire Side, is a chapel" built by the year 1742. [2]


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.

Online index of Lancashire Births, Marriages and Deaths Lancashire BMD

Lancashire Online Parish Clerks

An extremely useful resource for research in Lancashire Parishes

Church records

Include here information for parish registers, Bishop’s Transcripts 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

Parish registers for Cockerham, 1595-1900 Text in Latin and English.
Microfilm of original records at the Lancashire Record Office,Preston.
Includes records from Ellel chapelry, baptisms, 1727-1829, burials, 1764-1829; and Shireshead chapelry, baptisms, 1742-1746, 1799-1801, 1806-1829, burials, 1813-1829. Some missing years.
Ellel chapellry is in Cockerham parish. Shireshead or Shirehead chapelry is in the parishes of Cockerham and Garstang.
Lancashire Record Office no. : PR 1368-1381, 2688, 3251/1/3-8

Baptisms, 1658-1743; Marriages, 1661-1743; Burials, 1661-1643; Baptisms, 1690-1782; Marriages, 1695-1753; Baptisms, 1782-1793; burials, 1786; Burials, 1744-1793; marriage, 1792; Baptisms, 1793-1812; Burials, 1794-1812; Baptisms, 1813-1893; Marriages, 1754-1837.
Marriages, 1837-1874; Burials, 1813-1843; Churchwardens' accounts, 1738-1899; Vestry minutes, 1822-1907.
Baptisms, 1595-1657; Marriages, 1653-1656, 1595-1631; Burials, 1595-1656. Marriages, 1631-1645; Baptisms, 1658-1893 (another filming). Marriages, 1659-1874 (another filming). Burials, 1659-1843 (another filming).
1278859 Items 7 - 20
Marriages, 1874-1900. Burials, 1843-1901. Banns, 1896-1900. Register of services, 1865-1883. Register of preachers readers, collections, 1883-1889. Register of services, 1889-1900. The official parochial register of church services, organization and finance, 1900.
1278872 Items 1 - 7

Bishop's transcripts for Cockerham, 1673-1902 Microreproduction of original manuscripts housed at the Lancashire Record Office, Preston.
Some parts are illegible due to torn pages, dark spots and faded ink.
Ellel is a chapelry in the parish of Cockerham
Shireshead is a chapelry in Cockerham and Garstang parishes.
Lancashire Record Office no.: DRB 2/57-64

(Cockerham) baptisms, marriages, burials, 1673- 1674, 1677-1680, 1682-1686, 1688-1693, 1697- 1698, 1701-1707, 1709-1715, 1717-1719, 1721- 1745 (Includes some baptisms of Ellel and Shireshead chapelries).
1656814 Item 3
(Cockerham) baptisms, marriages, burials, 1745- 1837 (includes some baptisms and burials of the chapelries of Ellel and Shireshead) Baptisms and burials 1838-1869, 1871-1874, 1876-1879, 1883-1888, 1895, 1901-1902 (includes marriages for 1858 only)
(Ellel) marriages 1753 Baptisms, burials 1830, 1841-1844, 1846-1872 (Shireshead) baptisms and burials 1830-1860 (one marriage, 1860)
1656816 Items 1-2
Another filming (poor quality). Preston : PRO, [198-?]. 8 microfilm reels ; 35 mm.

Census records for details of public houses in the 1881 census

Poor Law Unions

Lancaster 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

Add any relevant sites that aren’t mentioned above.


  1. John Marius Wilson, Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales(1870-72)
  2. A Topographical Dictionary of England by Samuel Lewis (1848), pp. 632-635. Adapted. Date accessed: 21 July 2010.