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What are burial records?

Local and family history A-Z > Burial records
  • There are different types of burial records, they are held in many different locations and there is no comprehensive index to them

  • The main types of burial records are records compiled by religious groups and records kept by cemeteries and crematoria 

  • Most burials before the 1850s were recorded in the registers of Anglican parish churches. Further details of these are in the separate Parish registers section

  • Some non-conformist chapels had their own burial grounds and therefore their own records. Roman Catholics and Jews often had their own burial grounds and records too

  • After the 1850s many burials took place in private and local authority cemeteries in addition to parish churchyards

  • Burial records tell you where and when a burial took place. Usually they give the name, age and date of burial of the deceased. They may also give the person's profession, address and date of death

  • A related source of information is the recording of  inscriptions on gravestones such as the transcription projects undertaken by local family history societies

  • You can read more detailed information about burial records, including non-conformist, Roman Catholic and Jewish records, in the National Archives Research Guide 'Burial indexes'

  • The Genuki site also gives further information in its broader sections on 'Church records' and 'Jewish records'

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Page last updated: 26th October 2011