Towns & Parishes
"Betley is one of the smallest and pleasantest market towns in the county, consisting of only one wide street, on the Nantwich road, seven miles WNW of Newcastle-under-Lyme, and three miles SSE of Basford Station, near the confines of Cheshire, the boundary line between the two counties extending here through the middle of a fine lake of 80 acres called Betley Mere. The appearance of the houses is uncommonly neat, and the town is greatly ornamented by two handsome seats, Betley Hall and Betley Court, the former of which is the residence and property of George Tollet, Esq, and the latter of Fras. and TF Twemlow, Esqrs. The parish contains 884 inhabitants, and about 1480 acres of land. Mr Tollet is lord of the manor, and the other principal proprietors are Sir TFF Boughey, who has a large estate here, and the Earl of Wilton, who owns Betley Mere.[From History, Gazetteer and Directory of Staffordshire, William White, Sheffield, 1851]
Wrine Hill, one mile S by W of Betley, is a scattered village on an eminence, partly in this parish, but mostly in that of Wibunbury in Cheshire. It was anciently the seat of the Egerton family, and between it and Betley is Ravenshall, containing a number of detatched houses."
'Betley, A Village of Contrasts'
by Robert Speake.
Published 1980, by Dept of Adult Education, University of Keele.
The population of Betley parish was as follows:
1831 -- 870
1841 -- 884
A surname index of the 1851 census for Betley Parish is included in the Newcastle under Lyme surname index to the 1851 census published by the Birmingham and Midland SGH.
"The Parish Church, St Margaret, was one of the oldest in the county, but in 1841/2 it was renovated and enlarged and the nave rebuilt. It has a tower and five bells. The chancel was rebuilt in 1610 and the tower in 1713. In the chancel are several neat mural monuments to the Egerton and Tollet families. The church was anciently appropriated to Ranton Abbey, and is now a perpetual curacy, in the incumbency of the Rev Henry Turton, who was appointed in 1819. George Tollet, Esq is the patron.
The Wesleyans have a small chapel in the town."
[From History, Gazetteer and Directory of Staffordshire, William White, Sheffield, 1851]
Church of England Registers
The parish register of the parish church of St Margaret commences in 1538. The original registers for the period 1538-1919 (Bapts), 1538-1950 (Mar) & 1538-1913 (Bur) and Banns 1824-1964 are deposited at Staffordshire Record Office.
Bishops Transcripts, 1673-1859 (with gaps 1712-1713, 1763-1765, 1771-1772 & 1849-1850) are deposited at Lichfield Record Office.
A transcript of the registers for the period 1538-1812 was published by the Staffordshire Parish Register Society in 1916 and has been reprinted by the Birmingham & Midland SGH.
Patrick Corness's Betley History pages include a transcript of the registers for the period 1538-1812 taken from the SPRS transcript.
The parish became part of Newcastle-under-Lyme Union following the Poor Law Amendment Act of 1834.
[Last updated: 13th March 2001, Mike Harbach. ©1998, 1999, 2000, 2001]