Place:Hagley, Worcestershire, England

Alt namesWest Hagley
TypeParish (ancient), Civil parish
Coordinates52.43°N 2.12°W
Located inWorcestershire, England
Also located inHereford and Worcester, England     (1974 - 1998)
Worcestershire, England     (1998 - )
See alsoHalfshire Hundred, Worcestershire, Englandhundred of which the parish was a part
Bromsgrove Rural, Worcestershire, Englandrural district of which it was part 1894-1974
Bromsgrove District, Hereford and Worcester, Englanddistrict municipality covering the area 1974-1998
Bromsgrove District, Worcestershire, Englanddistrict municipality covering the area from 1998 onward
source: Family History Library Catalog


Age of parish register

The parish register of Hagley is the oldest in England. It dates from 1 December 1538, being the year in which registers were ordered to be kept in all parishes. (Source:Wikipedia)

A nineteenth century description

A Vision of Britain through Time provides the following description of Hagley from John Marius Wilson's Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales of 1870-72:

"HAGLEY, a village and a parish in Bromsgrove [registration] district, Worcester. The village stands near the West Midland railway, and near the boundary with Stafford, 2½ miles SSE of Stourbridge; and has a station on the railway, and a post office under Stourbridge. The parish contains also the hamlets of Stakenbridge and Blakedown. Acres: 2,363. Real property: £6,221. Population: 963. Houses: 218. The property is much subdivided. The manor, with Hagley Hall, belongs to Lord Lyttelton. Hagley Hall was built by the first Lord Lyttelton, the historian; is beautifully situated, on an undulating lawn; was frequently visited by Pope, Shenstone, Thomson, Addison, and other persons of genius and literary talent; contains many interesting paintings, and other objects of art; and stands amid grounds replete with both natural and artificial attractions. Other elegant seats are in the neighbourhood. A large Roman camp is on Wychbury hill. The living is a rectory in the diocese of Worcester. Value: £584. Patron: Lord Lyttelton. The church was built in 1200; was repaired and enlarged by the first Lord Lyttelton; was restored in 1838; and contains monuments of the Lytteltons. There are a chapel of ease at Blakedown, a national school, and charities £25."

A modern summary

the following text is based on an article in Wikipedia

Hagley is a village and civil parish in Worcestershire, England. It is on the boundary of the counties of West Midlands, England and Worcestershire and between the towns of Dudley and Kidderminster. The parish had a population of 4,283 in 2001, but the whole village had a population of perhaps 5,600, including the part in Clent parish. It is now in the Bromsgrove District.

The parish of Hagley used to consist of Hagley, West Hagley (redirected here) and Blakedown (merged with the adjoining village of Churchill to form Churchill and Blakedown in 1888). The main focus of the village was Hagley where Hagley Hall and the parish church of St. John The Baptist (with its origins in Anglo-Saxon times) are located. In 1868 the Earl of Dudley defrayed one third of the cost of the tower and spire designed by George Edmund Street to the church.

With the arrival of the railway in 1852 and the building of a "proper" station and its iconic GWR footbridge (finished in 1884), Lower Hagley started to expanded. With the expansion of Lower Hagley (now known as West Hagley) the focus of the village started to move. This was recognised in 1906 with the building of a subsidiary parish church in Lower Hagley dedicated to St. Saviour, and today West Hagley contains the shopping area and the schools. The precise dividing line between the two areas is undefined and is therefore debatable. Nevertheless, both settlements lie within the parish of Hagley. However part of this built-up portion stretches west into Clent parish.

It is situated on the A456 Birmingham to Kidderminster road, which is known as the Hagley Road in Birmingham, because it was once administered by a turnpike trust whose responsibilities ended at the former boundary of the parish (now in Blakedown).

Hagley once had its own cattle market, but was never a "market town". Today Hagley is essentially a dormitory village. The population of Hagley greatly increased after the arrival of the railway in 1862, which enabled people to commute into Birmingham or other towns within the adjacent Black Country.

end of Wikipedia contribution

From 1894 until 1974 Hagley was a parish in the Bromsgrove Rural District. Since 1974 it has been part of the Bromsgrove District, first in the county of Hereford and Worcester, and then, since 1998, in Worcestershire again.

The map of Worcestershire circa 1944 labels the civil parishes in Bromsgrove Rural District.

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 Hagley. 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.