St Helen Without is a civil parish in the Vale of White Horse district in the English county of Oxfordshire. In 1974 it was transferred from Berkshire. It is immediately west of Abingdon and includes the villages of Dry Sandford and Shippon. A large part of the parish is occupied by Dalton Barracks and its associated airfield (formerly RAF Abingdon). According to the 2001 census the parish had a population of 2,623.
The parish was created by the Local Government Act 1894, by the division of the parish of Abingdon St. Helen. The part inside Abingdon Municipal Borough became part of Abingdon parish, whilst that part outside became St. Helen Without. It became part of the Abingdon Rural District of Berkshire in 1894, and then part of the Vale of White Horse in Oxfordshire under the Local Government Act 1972.
St. Helen Without was part of the Hormer Hundred and the Abingdon Poor Law Union. The parish was located in the Abingdon Rural District 1894-1974, and since that date in the Vale of White Horse District of Oxfordshire.
Online Historical References
Nineteenth Century Local Administration
English Jurisdictions is a webpage provided by FamilySearch which analyses every ecclesiastical parish in England at the year 1851. It provides, with the aid of outline maps, the date at which parish records and bishops transcripts begin, non-conformist denominations with a chapel within the parish, the names of the jurisdictions in charge: county, civil registration district, probate court, diocese, rural deanery, poor law union, hundred, church province; and links to FamilySearch historical records, FamilySearch Catalog and the FamilySearch Wiki. Two limitations: only England, and at the year 1851.
During the 19th century two bodies, the Poor Law Union and the Sanitary District, had responsibility for governmental functions at a level immediately above that covered by the civil parish. In 1894 these were replace by Rural and Urban Districts. These were elected bodies, responsible for setting local property assessments and taxes as well as for carrying out their specified duties. Thses districts continued in operation until 1974. Urban districts for larger municipalities were called "Municipal Boroughs" and had additional powers and obligations.
Poor Law Unions, established nationally in 1834, combined parishes together for the purpose of providing relief for the needy who had no family support. This led to the building of '"union poorhouses" or "workhouses" funded by all the parishes in the union. The geographical boundaries established for the individual Poor Law Unions were employed again when Registration Districts were formed three years later. In 1875 Sanitary Districts were formed to provide services such as clean water supply, sewage systems, street cleaning, and the clearance of slum housing. These also tended to follow the same geographical boundaries, although there were local alterations caused by changes in population distribution.