Place:Stoke St. Milborough, Shropshire, England

NameStoke St. Milborough
Alt namesStoke-St. Milboroughsource: Family History Library Catalog
Stanton in Milboroughsource: township in parish
Downton in Milboroughsource: township in parish
Brown Cleesource: settlement in parish
Stoke Gorsesource: settlement in parish
TypeTownship, Parish (ancient), Civil parish
Coordinates52.436°N 2.637°W
Located inShropshire, England
See alsoMunslow Hundred, Shropshire, Englandhundred in which it was located
Wenlock Franchise, Shropshire, Englandliberty in which it was located until 1836
Ludlow Rural, Shropshire, Englandrural district 1894-1974
South Shropshire District, Shropshire, Englanddistrict municipality 1974-2009
Shropshire District, Shropshire, Englandunitary authority covering the area since 2009
source: Family History Library Catalog
the text in this section is based on an article in Wikipedia, supplemented by information taken from the article in the Victoria County History of Shropshire (see below)

Stoke St. Milborough is a parish located in Shropshire, England. The population of the civil parish at the 2011 census was 409.

The parish was Wenlock borough's most southerly detachment. The village is 9 km. northeast of Ludlow. Wholly agricultural and little frequented, it comprises Stoke village and a scattering of farms and ancient hamlets, and the main part was divided into the townships of Stoke, Downton, and Stanton. The only main road traversing the parish is the northeast to southwest B4396 from Bridgnorth to Ludlow

There was a detached part to the parish about 3 km. to the north which was formed into Heath civil parish from 1884.

Stoke and Stanton manors were settled by 1086 (the year of the Domesday Book). There was a church at Stoke c. 1200, which seems to have incorporated vestiges of an earlier one, and a mill by 1334. Wool and woollen cloth seem to have been important products of the parish in the 14th century. In 1340, the parish's crops were devastated by storms, flocks dwindled and 11 tenants abandoned their holdings. In 1581, the lord of Stoke reserved to himself any mines (more likely, quarries) on the waste and in 1637 he had mines of ironstone and limestone, which he was alleged to let to poor people at expensive rates. Limestone was being quarried in Stoke Manor in 1637.

In 1815 there were 11 cottages on Stoke Gorse and 24 on Brown Clee. The population grew rapidly and in 1821, there were 554 inhabitants. The population remained steady until c. 1871, when it began to decline. In 1971, there were only 215 inhabitants. However, by 1991, it had risen again to 300.

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

"STOKE-ST. MILBOROUGH, a parish, comprising [Stoke St. Milborough] and Heath townships, in Ludlow [registration] district, Salop [or Shropshire]; 6¼ miles NE of Ludlow [railway] station. Post town: Ludlow. Acres: 5,750. Real property: £5,362. Population: 573. Houses: 119. The property is much subdivided. The living is a vicarage, with Heath chapelry, in the diocese of Hereford. Value: £474. Patrons: the Representatives of the late Rev. G. Morgan. The church was recently restored. There are a chapel of ease at Heath, Wesleyan and Primitive Methodist chapels, and a national school."

There is a map of the parish in the Victoria County History article.

St. Milburga

St. Milburga, the abbess of Wenlock Abbey, was a Benedictine abbess who received the veil from St. Theodore of Canterbury. Her father was the King of Mercia. She is supposed to have had remarkable abilities, such as levitation and power over birds. Her feast day is the 23rd of February.

St. Milburga's Well (sometimes St. Milburgha's Well) is a spring with an old stone basin, on the east side of Stoke village. It was first mentioned in 1321. It later became a clothes-washing place. Stories of its miraculous origin were recorded in the mid-19th century. The water was said to be good for sore eyes. It was covered and altered in 1873 and 1906 and by 1945 its water was piped to six houses.

Research Tips

  • The historical short form for Shropshire was "Salop". This is quite often found in archive material.
  • Shropshire Archives, Castle Gates, Shrewsbury SY1 2AQ
  • Shropshire Family History Society.
  • The GENUKI main page for Shropshire provides information on various topics covering the whole of the county, and there is also a link to a list of parishes. Under each parish there is a list of the settlements within it and brief description of each. This is a list of pre-1834 ancient or ecclesiastical parishes but there are suggestions as to how to find parishes set up since then.
  • GENUKI also provides transcriptions of parish registers for numerous parishes throughout Shropshire. These will be noted at the bottom of this list as time permits for the parishes involved. Each register is preceded by historical notes from the editor-transciber and other details than simply births, marriages and deaths that have been found in the individual books from the parishes. These registers probably only go up to 1812 when the proscribed style for registers across the country was altered.
  • GENUKI lists under each parish further references to other organizations who hold genealogical information for the local area. (URLs for these other websites may not be up to date.)
  • The FamilyTree Wiki has a series of pages similar to those provided by GENUKI which may have been prepared at a later date and from more recent data. The wiki has a link to English Jurisdictions 1851. There is a list of all the parishes in existence in 1851 with maps indicating their boundaries. The website is very useful for finding the ecclesiastical individual parishes within large cities and towns.
  • A Vision of Britain through Time, Shropshire, section "Units and Statistics" leads to analyses of population and organization of the county from about 1800 through 1974. There are similar pages available for all civil parishes, municipal boroughs and other administrative divisions that existed pre-1974. Descriptions provided are usually based on a gazetteer of 1870-72 which often provides brief notes on the economic basis of the settlement and significant occurences through its history.
  • The two maps below indicate the boundaries between parishes, etc., but for a more detailed view of a specific area try a map from this selection. The oldest series are very clear at the third magnification offered. Comparing the map details with the GENUKI details for the same area is well worthwhile.
  • Map of Shropshire illustrating urban and rural districts in 1900 produced by UK Ordnance Survey and provided online by A Vision of Britain through Time. Parish boundaries and settlements within parishes are shown. (Unfortunately the online copy of this map has pencil codings in each parish which make it difficult to see the orignal.)
  • Map of Shropshire urban and rural districts in 1944 produced by UK Ordnance Survey and provided online by A Vision of Britain through Time. Parish boundaries and settlements within parishes are shown. This is not a repeat of the first map. There were a number of changes to urban and rural district structure in the 1930s.
  • A map of the ancient divisions named "hundreds" is to be found in A Vision of Britain through Time. Some of the hundreds were broken into separate sections with other hundreds in between.
  • The website British History Online provides four volumes of the Victoria County History Series on Shropshire. Volume 2 covers the religious houses of the county; Volume 4 provides a history of agriculture across the county, and Volumes 10 and 11 deal with Munslow Hundred, the Borough of Wenlock and the Telford area (i.e., the northeastern part of the county). The rest of the county is not presently covered. References to individual parishes will be furnished as time permits.
  • Victoria County History - Shropshire - Vol 10, pp 380-393 - Parish: Stoke St. Milborough. British History Online. University of London (London, 1998).