Place:Cradley, Worcestershire, England

TypeChapelry, Civil parish
Coordinates52.4656°N 2.0853°W
Located inWorcestershire, England     (1844 - 1974)
Also located inShropshire, England     ( - 1844)
West Midlands, England     (1974 - )
See alsoBrimstree Hundred, Shropshire, Englandhundred in which it was located until 1844
Halfshire Hundred, Worcestershire, Englandhundred of which the parish was a part after 1844
Halesowen Rural, Worcestershire, Englandrural district of which it was part 1894-1925
Halesowen, Worcestershire, Englandurban district, then municipal borough of which it was part 1925-1974
Dudley (metropolitan borough), West Midlands, Englandmetropolitan borough into which it was merged in 1974
source: Family History Library Catalog
NOTE: There are two villages named Cradley in the Midlands of England; the "other" Cradley lies about 30 miles to the southwest, near to the Malvern Hills, but just across the county boundary in Herefordshire.

the following text is based on an article in Wikipedia

Cradley is a village in the Black Country and Metropolitan Borough of Dudley; near Halesowen and the banks of the River Stour. Cradley was part of the ancient parish of Halesowen, but (unlike much of the rest of that parish, which was an exclave of Shropshire) was always in Worcestershire, until the creation of the West Midlands County in 1974. This meant that for civil administrative purposes, Cradley formerly had the officers which a parish would have had (in other words, it was an independent parish).

Although Cradley was historically a village in its own right, increasing residential development during the first half of the 20th century has seen it swallowed up into Halesowen so it became not only part of the Halesowen Borough, but also part of the town of Halesowen. Cradley's old High Street is located along what is now known as Colley Lane.

In the 19th century a new settlement grew up in heathland on the other side of the River Stour, and became known as Cradley Heath. This was in the ancient parish of Rowley Regis. Previously the residents of Cradley had the right to graze their animals on that heath, subject to a small annual payment to the lord of the manor.

For more information, see the EN Wikipedia article Cradley, West Midlands.

Research Tips

  • Ordnance Survey Maps of England and Wales - Revised: Worcestershire illustrates the parish boundaries of Worcestershire when rural districts were still in existence and before the West Midlands came into being. The map publication year is 1931. The map blows up to show all the parishes and many of the small villages and hamlets. Maps in this series are now downloadable for personal use.
  • British History Online has a large collection of local maps from the Ordnance Survey 1883-1893. These blow up to a size that permits viewing of individual hamlets, farms, collieries, but there is no overlapping of one map to the next, and no overall map to tie the individual ones together.
  • British History Online also has three volumes of the Victoria County History of Worcestershire online. Volume 3 (published in 1913) deals with the Halfshire Hundred; Volume 4 (published in 1924) deals with the City of Worcester, as well as parishes in the hundreds of Pershore and Doddingtree. Volume 2 covers religious houses in the county. The remainder of the county is not represented in the British History Online series.
  • GENUKI makes a great many suggestions as to other websites with worthwhile information about Worcestershire as well as leading to a collection of 19th century descriptions of each of the ecclesiastical parishes.
  • The FamilySearch Wiki provides a similar information service to GENUKI which may be more up-to-date. An index of parishes leads to notes and references for each parish. The auxiliary website English Jurisdictions can also be helpful.
  • Worcestershire Archive and Archaeology Service, The Hive, Sawmill Walk, The Butts, Worcester WR1 3PD (Telephone: 01905 822866, e-mail: The Archives Collections Catalog Summary outlines the contents of the Archives Collection and also notes on what has been transferred to the national online service Access to Archives
  • The Birmingham & Midland Society for Genealogy and Heraldry has a branch in Bromsgrove which deals in Worcestershire family history. There are also branches at Stourbridge and Worcester.
  • The Midlands Historical Data project produces searchable facsimile copies of old local history books and directories of interest to genealogists. It specialises in the three counties of Warwickshire, Worcestershire and Staffordshire, working closely with libraries, archives and family history societies in the area. Digital images are made freely available to participating organisations to improve public access. Free search index on its web-site to all its books. In many cases payment will be required to see the extract.
  • A Vision of Britain through Time has
  1. organization charts of the hierarchies of parishes within hundreds, registration districts and rural and urban districts of the 20th century
  2. excerpts from a gazetteer of circa 1870 outlining individual towns and parishes
  3. reviews of population through the time period 1800-1960
  • Brett Langston's list of Worcestershire Registration Districts and parishes within each registration district from 1837 to the present can indicate where to find details of civil registration entries since the process began in England.
  • More local sources can often be found by referring to "What Links Here" in the column on the left.
This page uses content from the English Wikipedia. The original content was at Cradley, West Midlands. 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.