Main categories of records

We are always seeking to expand our collections relating to Warwickshire’s history. Please visit our Depositing Records page to find out how you can submit your records

Here you will find information on:

  • Local government
  • Church of England parish records
  • Nonconformist records
  • Courts of law, coroners, criminal and police records
  • School and education records
  • Business collections
  • Estate and family papers
  • Solicitors’ archives
  • Hospital and health records
  • Other sources

Our online catalogue features collection-level descriptions for all our records. You can search our online catalogue by visiting Warwickshire’s Past Unlocked. If you need any further help please contact us at the records office.

Local government

In addition to records of the County Council from 1889 and of its predecessor (the court of Quarter Sessions in its administrative role) from 1625, the record office holds:

  • Records of District Councils from 1894 to 1974
  • Records of Parish Councils from 1894
  • Administrative records of Church of England parishes from the 17th century

Church of England parish records

Registers of baptisms, marriages and burials dating from the 16th or 17th centuries for almost every parish in the county. We also hold administrative records. These include records about the support of the poor and the maintenance of law and order.

We hold records for parishes in Coventry. We do not hold records for Stratford-upon-Avon and parishes within Birmingham’s pre-1974 borders.

Parish registers and census returns held at the record office

Nonconformist records

Records of nonconformist churches and chapels are less well preserved than Church of England records. Several nonconformist congregations are available in the record office. Records of Roman Catholic parishes have not been deposited here. We do hold copies of pre-20th century registers for a few churches.

Nonconformist church registers held at the record office

Courts of law, coroners, criminal and police records

The Court of Quarter Sessions heard civil and criminal cases within Warwickshire. The records of the Quarter Sessions date from 1625. Major cases were heard by the royal courts including the Assizes. The National Archives in London hold the surviving records for these courts. Other courts whose records are available here include:

  • Magistrates’ and County courts (from the mid 19th century)
  • Manorial courts (for a small number of places only, some with records dating from the Middle Ages).
  • Records of coroners’ inquests, though few survive before 1900.

The records of the Warwickshire Constabulary dating from 1840 have been deposited. They contain information about the police service and the careers of individual police officers. This includes very little information about criminals.

School and education records

Many primary schools have deposited their logbooks and admission records at the record office. In some cases these date back to the beginning of a national school system in the 1860s or 1870s. A very small number of secondary schools have also deposited their records. Town and parish council collection can also be useful.

Business collections

Although a small number of businesses have deposited records, there are important collections for:

  • Eagle Engineering of Warwick. Builders of sanitary vehicles, with a large collection of photographs of their products from 1920-1950.
  • Stanley Brothers of Nuneaton. Brick and tile manufacturers, colliery owners, and engineers from the late 19th century.
  • Needle Industries Ltd. An amalgamation of several old-established needle manufacturers from the late 19th century.
  • Willians and Robinson Ltd of Rugby. Producers of steam engines for electricity generation, turbines and diesel engines.

Estate and family papers

Records of landed estates can give a wealth of information about the family and its lands. They can also record the people who lived on the estates and show their involvement in local and national affairs. Major collections deposited here include:

  • Feilding of Newbold Revel (Earls of Denbigh)
  • Greville of Warwick Castle (Earls of Warwick)
  • Mordaunt of Walton
  • Newdigate of Arbury
  • Seymour of Ragley (Marquises of Hertford)
  • Shirley of Ettington
  • Shuckburgh of Upper Shuckburgh
  • Throckmorton of Coughton
  • Willes collection
  • Waller of Woodcote

Solicitors’ archives

Many solicitors have deposited the records of their firms and clients in the record office. These records often supplement records deposited by institutions or individuals.

Hospital and Health Records

Two major Health Service institutions have deposited their records here:

  • Central Hospital at Hatton (formerly the County Lunatic Asylum, opened in 1852)
  • Warneford Hospital in Leamington Spa (founded in 1827)

Other information about health and sanitation can be found in local authority records.

Other Sources

Newspapers

Warwick and Leamington Spa papers:

  • Warwick Advertiser from 1806
  • Leamington Courier from 1832
  • Leamington Morning News from 1896

There are also incomplete series of Alcester, Atherstone, Bedworth, Nuneaton and Rugby newspapers.

Maps and plans

The office holds printed maps, including:

  • County maps from the 16th century
  • Ordnance Survey large scale maps from 1886-1990

We also hold manuscript maps such as:

  • Tithe maps from the 1830s
  • Enclosure maps from the 18th century
  • Maps of a large number of estates and farms dating from the 18th and 19th centuries.

Photographs, and prints and views

The office has an large collection of printed material such as drawings of places within the county. This also includes a large collection of photographs of places and people. A selection of these images are on Windows on Warwickshire, please contact for more information 01926 738959.