While writing the chapter on parish registers for my book Tracing Your Georgian Ancestors 1714-1837, I became aware of how little was known about the origins of the ‘extended parish registers’ introduced in some dioceses and parishes from the 1760s onwards, such as Dade and Barrington registers in the dioceses of York and Durham, most of which were discontinued in 1813 when printed Rose registers were introduced. I therefore decided to investigate this topic further myself.

Of the twenty-seven dioceses in the Church of England in the late eighteenth century, it would appear that initiatives to improve parish registers took place in only six: Carlisle, York, Chester, St Asaph, Norwich and Durham. Extended parish registers were also introduced by individual clergymen in a few parishes in other dioceses during the same period. The results of my research were presented as an IHGS Licentiateship dissertation in 2019. I am gradually making this information more accessible in the form of a series of articles published in the Genealogists' Magazine, but in the meantime will be pleased to supply a pdf version of my dissertation to anyone who is interested.

I am continuing to investigate other aspects of the history of parish registers that have received little attention from either genealogists or historians.