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Archives in London and the M25 area

Records of the parish of Dagenham

Identity Statement

Reference code(s): BD75
Held at: Barking and Dagenham Archives and Local Studies Service
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Full title: Records of the parish of Dagenham
Date(s): 1838-1926
Level of description: Fonds
Extent: 174 bound volumes
Name of creator(s): Parish of Dagenham
Detailed catalogue: Click here to view repository detailed catalogue


Administrative/Biographical history:

Becontree Heath was the meeting place of the Becontree Hundred, which was a court that governed on local matters until 1465. The Lord of the Manor had some jurisdiction also and Manorial Courts for the Dagenham Manors were held regularly here or in the Leet House at Barking. The Poor Law Act of 1601 set up the 'Vestry', the first unit of Local Authority. The members of the Vestry, later known as the Parish Council, were responsible for a number of local affairs put principally the care of the poor.

Ecclesiastical and secular affairs came under the same body, and were carried on in this war for two hundred years. There were also other special bodies, such as Trustees of the Turnpike Roads and the Commissioners for the Levels. In 1836 the union of Parishes was enforced for the care of the poor and Dagenham elected members to the Romford Board of Guardians and ceased to keep a village workhouse. The poor rate was collected by the Vestry, and the earliest surviving rate book dates back to 1839.

In 1840, the parish became part of the Metropolitan Police Area. The Local Board of Health was established in 1851. This body was responsible for local sanitary matters. Dagenham School Board was founded and five schools erected under the new compulsory Education Act of 1872. In 1902 the School Board was abolished and the management of schools in Dagenham was taken over by Essex County Council. During the same year a drainage scheme was undertaken, and then enlarged in 1910.

The parish remained mainly rural until 1921, when the London County Council started to build the great Becontree Estate. Modern industries, notably the Ford Motor Works, soon followed the new population. Dagenham became an urban district in 1926 and a borough in 1938.


Scope and content/abstract:

This collection comprises the following records relating to the parish of Dagenham:

Minute books of Dagenham Parish Council, 1894-1926 (BD75/A/1-3)

Attendance book of Dagenham Parish Council, 1894-1925 (BD75/A/4)

Letter book of Dagenham Parish Council, 1923-1924 (BD75/A/5)

Minute books of Dagenham School Board, 1874-1903 (BD75/B/1)

Ledger of Dagenham School Board, 1894-1900 (BD75/B/2)

Poor rate books for Dagenham, 1839-1879 (BD75/C/1)

Church rate books for Dagenham, 1849-1865 (BD75/C/2)

Sanitary rate books for Dagenham, 1887-1892 (BD75/C/3)

Lighting rate books for Dagenham, 1900-1925 (BD75/C/4)

Highways rate books for Dagenham, 1874-1880 (BD75/C/5)

Poor and sanitary rate books for Dagenham, 1893-1913 (BD75/C/6)

Poor and special expenses rate books for Dagenham, 1914-1922 (BD75/C/7)

Valuation lists for Dagenham, 1893 (BD75/D)

Collection and deposit books for Dagenham, 1907-1928 (BD75/E)

Collectors' statements and books for Dagenham, 1894-1927 (BD75/F)

Receipt and payment books for Dagenham, 1838-1926 (BD75/G)

Allotment ledgers, 1920-1928 (BD75/H)

Dagenham tithe register, 1841 (BD75/J)

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:

System of arrangement:

The arrangement is based where possible on original order, as well as the format of the material and chronology.

Conditions governing access:

The material within this collection is open to research by appointment at the Barking and Dagenham Archives and Local Studies Centre. For further information about visiting the reading room please contact or telephone 020 8227 2033.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Material within this collection can be reproduced at the discretion of the Borough Archivist. For further information about conditions governing reproduction please contact or telephone 020 8227 2033.

Finding aids:

For additional information on the content of this collection please contact or telephone 020 8227 2033.

Archival Information

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

There is no record of the immediate source or date of acquisition.

Allied Materials

Related material:

Publication note:

Description Notes

Archivist's note:
Catalogued by Clare Sexton, Assistant Archivist in accordance with ISAD(G).

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:
The fonds level description was created in 2012 and then added to Aim25 in 2014.

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