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Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 0074 P81/STE1
Held at: London Metropolitan Archives
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Date(s): 1856-1948
Level of description: Collection
Extent: 1.73 linear metres
Name of creator(s): Parish of St Stephen the Martyr, Hampstead | Church of England


Administrative/Biographical history:

Saint Stephen's Church was consecrated in 1849 and a chapelry district was assigned to it the same year. In 1856 this became a parish. Although Saint Stephen's Church was situated in the Borough of Hampstead, most of Saint Stephen's parish lay within the Borough of Saint Marylebone.

From February 1941 Saint Stephen's parish was grouped administratively with the parish of Saint Barnabas, Bell Street, and the parish of Christ Church, Cosway Street, with Saint John's Wood Chapel. The Rector of Christ Church the Reverend O.H. Gibbs-Smith was based at Saint John's House and took charge of all three parishes. The scheme for the parochial reorganisation of Saint Marylebone published in 1945 proposed that the part of Saint Stephen's parish which was situated in the Borough of Hampstead should be transferred to Hampstead Deanery. The rest of the parish would form the major part of a new parish with Saint John's Wood Chapel replacing Saint Stephen's as the parish church. Saint Andrew's Mission Church would become a daughter church to Saint John's. The Bishop of London ordered that Saint Stephen's Church should be closed from 31 October 1945 and Saint Stephen's Parochial Church Council were asked to recognise Saint John's Wood Chapel as their parish church without waiting for a formal legal decision. Saint Andrew's Church was subsequently closed in July 1948.

When Mr Gibbs-Smith resigned in 1947, he was replaced by separate incumbents of Saint Stephen with Saint John and Christ Church with Saint Barnabas. The Reverend N.A. Perry-Gore was instituted Rector of Saint Stephen with Saint John on 5 December 1947. On 1 January 1948 Saint Stephen's accounts were closed and the money was transferred to Saint John's. On 11 March 1952 an Order in Council was published ratifying the reorganisation scheme and on 9 September 1952 a further Order in Council changed the name of the parish from Saint Stephen, Avenue Road to Saint John's Wood.

Whatever the legal position, Saint John's Wood Chapel had become the administrative centre of three parishes and Saint John's Wood appears to have absorbed Saint Stephen's rather than the other way round. Most of the series of records used for Saint Stephen's were closed, and either the Saint John's records were used for the new parish or a new series was started.

It has been decided, therefore, to list the records of Saint Stephen's parish dating from before the de facto union of 1948 separately from the records of Saint John's Wood Chapel and Saint John's Wood Parish. Records of the parish designate of Saint John's Wood dating from 1948 to 1952 have been listed with the records of Saint John's Wood Parish.


Scope and content/abstract:

Records of the parish of Saint Stephen the Martyr, including registers of baptisms, marriages, banns of marriage and church services; preachers' books; financial accounts; papers relating to church properties; faculties for the maintenance of church fittings; plan of church; National Schools Committee minute books; correspondence; Sunday School exercise books and church magazines. Also church service registers for Saint Andrew's Mission Church.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:

System of arrangement:

P81/STE1/001-043: Parish Registers; P81/STE1/044-099: Other Parish Records.

Conditions governing access:

These records are available for public inspection, although records containing personal information are subject to access restrictions under the UK Data Protection Act, 1998.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Copyright for these records rests with the depositor.

Finding aids:

Please see online catalogues at:

Archival Information

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

Parish records deposited in the Greater London Records Office by the Vicar of St John's Wood, 17 November 1978. An additional deposit was made in 2004 (records P81/STE1/089-098). Further deposit in 2010 (P81/STE/099).

Allied Materials

Related material:

Publication note:

Description Notes

Archivist's note:

Rules or conventions:
Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions:
March to April 2010.

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