B&AFHS Parishes

Baptism Marriage and Death records for churches of the Bristol Diocese are held in the Bristol Records Office.  A hand list of all these records held (including non-conformist records) is available on the Bristol Archives web site.

A note on records of the Bristol Diocese

Before 1541, the city of  Bristol was in the diocese of Worcester, it then passed to the newly founded diocese of Gloucester.  However in 1542 the Abbey church of St Augustine in Bristol became the Cathedral Church of the city and county of Bristol.  The new diocese consisted of the parishes in the city, a few parishes from Gloucestershire in its borders, the parish of Abbots Leigh in Somerset (because the manor was the country residence of the Abbot) and ... the county of Dorset was transferred from Sarum.

In 1837, Bristol was united with Gloucester to form one diocese; the county of Dorset was handed back to Salisbury ('Sarum') and in return, part of the archdeaconry of Wiltshire was incorporated.

In 1897, the diocese of Bristol was separated from Gloucester, retaining the Wiltshire parishes and also a small number of parishes in South Gloucestershire.

As a result of these movements, ecclesiastical documents relating to the diocese of Bristol are to be found in Gloucester and Salisbury as well as in the Bristol Records Office.

In 1731, a fire destroyed almost the whole town of Blandford and with it, the diocesan files kept there.  In 1831, most of the documents in Bristol Cathedral Library were lost in the riots when the mob broke into the Chapter house and made a bonfire of everything they could lay their hands on.

(abridged from the foreword of catalogue held in the Bristol Records Office)

Places of Worship Past and Present around Bristol

Visitors to this page may also be interested in the general listing of places of worship in the Bristol area available as a download from our 'resources for download' page.


Menu options on the left of this page will give access to articles originally published in our journal about medieval and other parishes around Bristol.  In some cases, other collected miscellany such as some records of memorial inscriptions from the churches are also presented.