Donnington Transcription Sources

Donnington was a benefice in the diocese of Hereford for at least 650 years. The earliest institution of a priest to Donnington in the registers of the bishops of Hereford is dated 1305.

The benefice of Donnington was transferred from the diocese of Hereford to that of Gloucester by Order in Council dated 10 February 1955 and combined with the benefice of Dymock. In the same order, Kempley which had been combined with Dymock was combined with Oxenhall, Pauntley which had been combined with Oxenhall was combined with Upleadon, and Preston which had been combined with Dymock was placed in a separate benefice.

The Donnington parish registers which had been held previously in the church were deposited in Gloucestershire Record Office in about 1976. The earliest Donnington parish register surviving at that time was started in 1754. The parish registers covering the period 1754 to 1986 are therefore held at Gloucestershire Record Office, and the latest post-1986 registers are still held in the church. The registers held at Gloucester have not yet been microfilmed.

The Donnington parish registers held at Gloucestershire Record Office are referenced under P410 (Donnington) as follows:

For completeness, other Donnington parish holdings at Gloucestershire record office are referenced under P410 (Donnington) and P125 (Dymock) as follows:

The earliest Donnington parish register held at Gloucester, starting in 1754, is a general register combining baptisms, marriages, banns and burials, and contains:

The entries for 1813 to 1986 are contained in separate registers for baptisms, marriages and burials.

For at least the period 1556 to 1766 Donnington was a daughter parish to Ledbury, as was Little Marcle, Much Marcle, Aylton, Pixley etc. The Ledbury parish registers of this period therefore include accounts of the various marriages and baptisms carried out in Donnington each year. In later registers this was kept as an annual account but in earlier Ledbury registers the entries are interspersed with those for the parent parish but marked as Donnington.

The annual account was headed: "An account of the Christenings and Marriages in the parish of Donnington from March 25 .... to March 25 ....". Note the absence of burials in these annual accounts. The earlier Ledbury registers refer to Ledbury as the "Burrough", and the daughter parishes as "Forreign" or "Countrie".

In the period 1754 to 1766 Donnington entries were made in both the surviving 1754 Donnington register and the 1744 Ledbury register. It's worth noting that, in this overlap period, the entries in the Ledbury register duplicate those in the Donnington register, albeit with a few differences of date and spelling. There is no difference in the style and format used in the Ledbury register before 1754 to record Donnington entries, and it seems likely to me that the Ledbury entries were duplicated in the same way, by copying the Donnington register. In addition Bishop's Transcripts exist of baptism and marriage entries in the "Donnington Register" well before 1754, so I think that Donnington parish registers earlier than 1754 were maintained but have been lost.

However, this duplication did not extend to burials. The earliest record in the surviving Donnington parish registers of a burial in Donnington is that of Elizabeth Jenkins (wife of the rector) in 1787 and the memorial inscription shows she was interred in the church itself. The earliest record in the Donnington parish registers of a burial in the churchyard, and confirmed by an identified grave, dates to 1835. Before 1765 Donnington burials sometimes took place elsewhere and were entered in the burial registers for Dymock, Ledbury, Bromsberrow and other adjacent parishes.

Donnington burials are scarce in the Ledbury parish registers but are not completely missing, at least in the earlier registers. It's not yet clear why Donnington burials are so scarce between 1700 and 1800 - it's possible that for some time Donnington was not able to carry out burials.

The Ledbury parish registers are held at Hereford Record Office and referenced under B092 as follows:

The registers held at Hereford have been microfilmed.

What's Been Transcribed

I have transcribed:

In addition, entries mentioning Donnington have been made available by Forest of Dean Family History from their transcripts of the parish registers of Bromsberrow (1559 to 1903), Dymock (1538 to 1930), Preston (1665 to 1983) and Kempley (1753 to 2000). Some Herefordshire Parish registers have been transcribed by the Herefordshire Family History Society and made available to the commercial online website FindMyPast for online access.

Finally, many Herefordshire registers, and Bishop's Transcrips have been scanned and transcribed by the Church of the Latter Day Saints (LDS) and placed online for free access by researchers.

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