Place:Cholesbury cum St. Leonards, Buckinghamshire, England

NameCholesbury cum St. Leonards
Alt namesCholesburysource: common local usage
Cholesbury-St Leonardssource: common local usage
TypeCivil parish
Coordinates51.755°N 0.652°W
Located inBuckinghamshire, England
See alsoBuckland Common, Buckinghamshire, Englandhamlet which became part of the parish in 1934
Cholesbury, Buckinghamshire, Englandvillage which became part of the parish in 1934
Hawridge, Buckinghamshire, Englandvillage which became part of the parish in 1934
St. Leonards, Buckinghamshire, Englandvillage which became part of the parish in 1934
Amersham Rural, Buckinghamshire, Englandrural district of which the parish was a part until 1974
Chiltern, Buckinghamshire, Englanddistrict municipality covering the area since 1974

the following text is based on an article in Wikipedia

Cholesbury cum St. Leonards is a civil parish in the Chiltern District of Buckinghamshire, England. It is located in the Chiltern Hills just to the north of Chesham and forms a boundary along its length with Hertfordshire.

It comprises the hamlet of Buckland Common, and the villages of Cholesbury, Hawridge and St. Leonards which were brought together as part of the local government reorganisation in April 1934. The parish has since increased in size through the annexing of additional parcels of land which previously were part of Chesham, Ashley Green and Drayton Beauchamp.

The parish was originally part of Amersham Rural District. In 1974 it joined the Chiltern District.


the text in this section is copied from an article in Wikipedia

In common with many other villages close to the scarp of the Chiltern Hills, the parishes formed from the ancient manors and estates ran from the fertile Vale of Aylesbury up the step wooded slope onto the Chiltern plateau and dip slope. They are collectively known by the social geographic term of strip parishes. Over time the upland communities, which had originally been temporary outposts connected to summer agricultural activity (transhumance), became distinct, permanent settlements.

Prior to 1934, the local government arrangements covering the area of the present-day parish were distributed across a number of separate civil parishes. Cholesbury has historical associations with Drayton Beauchamp, becoming an autonomous manor and parish from the 14th century. Meanwhile, Hawridge which has historic associations with Marsworth, despite the two settlements being separated by a narrow strip of land in Hertfordshire became an autonomous unit from around the 16th century. The other two main settlements of the modern-day parish, prior to 1934, were the upland portions of two other parishes. St. Leonards had been part of a civil parish with Aston Clinton (also for a time known as Aston Clinton St Leonards). The hamlet of Buckland Common had been within the parish of Buckland. Additionally, as part of a contemporary county boundary changes, a narrow strip of mainly arable fields and woodland plantation which ran adjacent to the county boundary was also transferred from Drayton Beauchamp parish, as was part of the hamlet of Heath End, a small parcel of land previously in Wigginton parish in Hertfordshire. More recently, a section of land, formally part of |Chesham parish has become incorporated into the Hawridge end of the parish.

Research Tips

Registration Offices


  • An outline map of the current civil parishes of Buckinghamshire (post 1974 and omitting Milton Keynes unitary authority) is provided by the Boundaries Commission.
  • Another map which gives no source, appears to have been drawn to show the county in the late 19th century and labels the parishes directly. However, the map does not show towns and villages (unless they are parishes using the same name) and some parishes have been found to be missing from this map.
  • A map provided by the Open University (a British university based in Milton Keynes) gives the locations of the old civil parishes and the new communities that make up Milton Keynes. It can be expanded to read the labels.

Registration Offices

Birth, marriage and death certificates can now be ordered online from Buckinghamshire County Council. The full postal address is Buckinghamshire Register Office, County Hall, Walton Street, Aylesbury, HP20 1YU.

The Centre for Buckinghamshire Studies (County Hall, Walton Street, Aylesbury, HP20 1UU) holds

  • Church of England and Nonconformist churches including registers of baptism, marriage and burial.
  • Around 35,000 wills proved by the Archdeaconry of Buckingham.
  • County and District Councils (lists of councillors, minutes of meetings, etc).
  • Quarter and Petty Session courts.
  • Landed estates of families including the Aubrey-Fletchers, Hampdens, Carringtons and Fremantles.
  • Historic maps including OS, tithe and inclosure maps
  • A wide range of local history books, some for loan.
  • Pamphlets and articles of local history interest.
  • Local newspapers
  • Computers for access to family history resources like Ancestry and FreeBMD.
  • Published material is listed in the Library Catalogue.
  • Catalogues to some of our manuscript material is available through Access to Archives, part of The National Archives (TNA). Their database contains catalogues describing archives held locally in England and Wales and dating from the eighth century to the present day.

In Buckinghamshire, as with other counties in England and Wales, the location of offices where Births, Marriages and Deaths were registered has altered with other changes in local government. A list of the location of Registration Offices since civil registration began in 1837 has been prepared by GENUKI (Genealogy: United Kingdom and Ireland). The table also gives details of when each Registration Office was in existence. In the case of Buckinghamshire, the same registration offices were used for the censuses since 1851.

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.

Online Historical References

  • GENUKI for Buckinghamshire provides a lot of material on the county history from a variety of aspects. The maps of the hundreds are reproduced from 19th century publications and show the topology as well as the locations of the various parishes. There is also a schematic map covering the whole county. GENUKI does not contain much information about the 20th century and beyond.
  • Local History Online provides a list of local historical organizations. Each of these societies and organizations has its own website.
  • The FamilySearch Wiki on Buckinghamshire explains the jurisdictions relating to civil affairs, parishes and probate (wills and testaments) for each parish in the county and also outlines when these jurisdictions were in existence. The data does not cover the post-1974 period.
This page uses content from the English Wikipedia. The original content was at Cholesbury-cum-St Leonards. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with WeRelate, the content of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.