- source: Family History Library Catalog
- source: Getty Thesaurus of Geographic Names
- the text in this section is based on an article in Wikipedia
Staines upon Thames, commonly referred to simply as Staines, is a town on the River Thames in the Borough of Spelthorne in Surrey, England. Before 1 April 1965 Staines was in Middlesex, the county that historically covered the area on the north side of the River Thames at this point. The town changed its official name from "Staines" to "Staines upon Thames" on 20 May 2012.
The town is within the western bounds of the M25 motorway, 17 miles (27 km) west southwest of Charing Cross (a point in central London from which distances are measured).
Parts of the large Staines post town are whole villages: Laleham, Stanwell and Wraysbury (which was not part of the earlier Staines Urban District). The post town includes, due to the long association of Staines Bridge with a medieval causeway (levee) on the opposite bank of the river, half of a large locality of a neighbouring town, Egham, namely Egham Hythe, which contains a significant business area, and some of the town's oldest listed buildings. At no point does ground level in Staines exceed river level. Flooding is a problem in times of heavy rain and high water flows on the upper Thames. London Heathrow Airport is centred north of Staines and the railway station is a main stop on the London Waterloo to Reading Line.
In 1894, the Local Government Act 1894 created the Staines Urban District: this status conferred additional powers and responsibilities compared with the few Rural Districts in Middlesex County Council. In 1965, under the London Government Act 1963, the county of Middlesex, apart from the Staines, Sunbury on Thames and Potters Bar Urban Districts, became part of Greater London. Staines and Sunbury were transferred to Surrey and Potters Bar to Hertfordshire. In 1974, under the Local Government Act 1972, the Staines Urban District was combined with Sunbury on Thames Urban District to form the present-day Borough of Spelthorne. Staines remains associated with the historical county of Middlesex through certain cultural and sporting affiliations, and until 1996 for postal purposes.
For more information, see the EN Wikipedia article Staines-upon-Thames.
Middlesex Research Tips
Parts of Middlesex were absorbed into London in 1889 (Inner London), and some in 1965 (Outer London). Depending on the specific location and the year being investigated it may be necessary to check London records as well as those of Middlesex.
- See wiki.familysearch.org under "Middlesex" for key information about the jurisdictions and records of Middlesex, plus links to indexes, reference aids and Family History Library holdings.
- The London Metropolitan Archives (40 Northampton Road, Clerkenwell, London EC1R 0HB) holds records relating to the whole of Greater London. Ancestry (subscription necessary) has produced transcriptions and provides images of lists of baptisms, marriages, and burials in churches across Greater London. These lists start in 1813 and stretch into the 20th century.
- The Victoria History of the County of Middlesex is a series of volumes available online through British History Online. The volumes were written over the past hundred or so years by a number of authors and cover various sections of Middlesex. A list of the volumes and what each contains can be found under the source Victoria History of the County of Middlesex
- GENUKI has a long list of websites and archive holders in addition to London Metropolitan Archives above. (The list from GENUKI is not maintained so well that there is never a dead link in it. However, it is often worth googling the title given on the page just in case the contributor has reorganized their website.)
- GENUKI has a separate page for Middlesex references.
- GENUKI also has a list of the Archives and Local Studies Libraries for each of the boroughs of Greater London.
- Registration Districts in Middlesex and Registration Districts in London, are lists of the registration districts used for civil registration (births, marriages and deaths, as well as the censuses). There are linked supporting lists of the parishes which made up each registration district, the dates of formation and abolition of the districts, the General Register Office numbers, and the local archive-holding place. This work has been carried out by Brett Langston under the agency of GENUKI (Genealogy United Kingdom and Ireland) and UKBMD - Births, Marriages, Deaths & Censuses on the Internet.
Surrey Research Tips
Administrative boundaries of the county of Surrey (Surrey History Centre. The centre has a website with a number of useful indexes--titheholders in various parishes, deaths at the county gaol, etc.)
- In 1889 the County of London was created, and the areas of the modern London boroughs of Lambeth, Southwark and Wandsworth were removed from Surrey. The records of these areas are held either by the London Metropolitan Archives or by the local boroughs, but the Surrey History Centre holds pre-1889 Quarter Sessions records for this area.
- Also in 1889, Croydon was made into a county borough exempt from county administration. Croydon became a London borough in 1965, and most Croydon records are held by the Croydon Local Studies Library and Archives.
- In 1965 more of Surrey was lost to London, with the creation of the London boroughs of Kingston, Merton, Richmond, Sutton and an expanded Croydon. For these areas, records are held by the local boroughs (either in their archives or local studies libraries) or the Surrey History Centre. The London Metropolitan Archives may also have some material.
- In 1965 Staines and Sunbury were transferred from Middlesex to Surrey. In 1974 these areas became the new District of Spelthorne. Most records relating to the former Middlesex area are held by the London Metropolitan Archives.
- Registration Districts in Surrey from their introduction in 1837 to the present. By drilling down through the links you can follow any parish through the registration districts to which it was attached.
The website GENUKI provides a very comprehensive list of reference sources for the County of Surrey. It includes:
- Archives and Libraries
- Church record availability for both Surrey and the former Surrey part of Greater London
- 19th century descriptions of the ecclesiastical parishes
- Lists of cemeteries
- Local family history societies
- A list of historic maps online
- The Victoria History of the County of Surrey is a series of three volumes available online through British History Online. The volumes were written over the past hundred or so years by a number of authors and cover various sections of Surrey. A list of the volumes and what each contains can be found under the source Victoria History of the County of Surrey. Both volumes 3 and 4 contain areas which are part of Greater London and parts of modern Surrey.