“ETWALL, a parish in the hundred of Appletree, county Derby, 6 miles N.E. of Burton-on-Trent, 6 S.W. of Derby, its post town, and about 2 N. of Egginton station on the North Staffordshire railway. The manor formed a part of the demesne of Welbeck Abbey, and at the dissolution of the monastic orders, in the reign of Henry VIII., was given to the Port family, and by marriage and purchase passed to the Gerards, Mosleys, Sleighs, and Cottons. It includes the townships of Bearwardcote and Etwall, and the hamlet of Burnaston. The living is a vicarage* in the diocese of Lichfield, value £342. The church is a plain structure with embattled tower. It is dedicated to St. Helen.

The parochial charities produce about £12 per annum, in addition to Sir John Port's hospital, which was founded and endowed in the middle of the 16th century, for poor persons, who are well provided for, at present to the number of 16; together with a grammar school at Repton, The Wesleyans have a chapel, and there is a school for both sexes. The Rev. C. E. Cotton is lord of the manor. Etwall Hall, containing some valuable antique carvings and paintings, and Etwall Lodge, are the principal residences."

"BEARWARDCOTE, a township in the parish of Etwall, hundred of Appletree, in the county of Derby, 6 miles to the S.W. of Derby. It lies near the old way called Icknield Street. The Midland West Branch railway passes within a short distance.”

from The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland - 1868


Archives & Libraries

The Etwall Library is on Egginton Road near the intersection with Hilton Road. They are normally open on Monday, Wednesday and Thursday.

The Library does not have a Local Studies and Family History Section, but they do offer free internet access.



  • The parish was in the Repton sub-district of the Burton on Trent Registration District.
  • The table below gives census piece numbers, where known:
Piece No.
1861 R.G. 9 / 1960
1891 R.G. 12 / 2197

Church History

  • The Anglican parish church is dedicated to Saint Helen.
  • The church was built in the 12th century, but the web page author could find no specific date reported.
  • The church was badly damaged by a storm on 20 June, 1545.
  • The church was restored in 1881.
  • A Chapel of Ease was erected in Burnaston township in 1839, but was later used by the Primitive Methodists. The Methodists added a new chapel in 1884.
  • There is a photograph of a painting of Saint Helen's Church at Flickr.
  • The church is a Grade I listed building with British Heritage.
  • John SUTTON has a photograph of St. Helen's Church on Geo-graph, taken in 1997.

Church Records

  • The Anglican parish register dates from 1557.
  • Marriages at Etwall, 1557-1837 are available in Nigel BATTY-SMITH's database of scanned images of Phillimore's Parish Registers.
  • The church was in the rural deanery of Longford.
  • Mike BARDILL has a photograph of the Methodist Church on Geo-graph, taken in June, 2006.
  • The parish also contains a modern Buddhist temple.
  • Mike BARDILL also has a photograph of the Buddhist Centre on Geo-graph, taken in June, 2006.

Civil Registration

  • Civil Registration began in July, 1837.
  • The parish was in the Repton sub-district of the Burton on Trent Registration District.

Description & Travel

"ETWALL is a pleasant village, in the township of Etwall and Bearward-Cote, in the parish of Etwall, and hundred of Appletree, 6 miles W.S.W. from Derby, situate on the road leading from that town to Uttoxeter, in Staffordshire. This village is the residence of several genteel families, but is destitute of manufactures, and its local trade is very unimportant."

[Description from Pigot and Co's Commercial Directory for Derbyshire, 1835]

Today, Etwall is 128 miles north of London, and sitting just north of the A50, west of the intersection with the A38. Visit the Etwall Village website for more information.

You can see pictures of Etwall which are provided by:






Historical Geography

You can see the administrative areas in which Etwall has been placed at times in the past. Select one to see a link to a map of that particular area.



  • Transcription of section of Lysons' Topographical and Historical Account of Derbyshire, 1817, for Etwall by Barbarann AYARS.
  • About 2/3 of the land in the parish was used for dairy pasturage.
  • The parish had a meeting room used for various meetings, also as a reading room, a library and a mens club.


You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SK268319 (Lat/Lon: 52.883897, -1.603181), Etwall which are provided by:


Medical Records

  • Sir John PORT founded Etwall Hospital circa 1621. It was rebuilt in 1681.
  • An Isolation Hospital was built in Sandy Pits Lane in 1902.
  • The Hospital closed in 1980.
  • Patient records were not archived.

Military History

  • Richard COOKE has a photograph of the War Memorial on Geo-graph, taken in July, 2014.
  • Major Matthew Smith DAWSON, retired, of the Nottinghamshire Yeomanry (Sherwwod Rangers) resided in the parish in 1912.


Jane TAYLOR of Redcar provides this announcement from the Derby Mercury of 16 December, 1802: MARRIED "On Thursday last, Etwall, in this county, Mr. Geo. HODGKINSON, of Matlock, to.Miss Catherine CLAY, of the former place."

Jane TAYLOR offers this snippet from the Derby Mercury of 14 Feb 1805: MARRIED "On Saturday se'nnight at Etwall, in this county, Mr. BAILEY, jun. to Miss CLARKE, both of that place."


Politics & Government

  • This place was an ancient parish in county Derby and became a modern Civil Parish when those were established.
  • This ancient parish contained the three townships of Etwall, Bearwardcote and Burnaston.
  • Burnaston became a separate modern Civil Parish in late 1866.
  • This parish was in the ancient Appletree Hundred (or Wapentake).
  • District governance is provided by the South Derbyshire District Council.

Poor Houses, Poor Law

  • Bastardy cases would be heard in the Derby petty session hearings.
  • There is an index of nearly twenty Etwall Bastardy Papers held at the DRO on the Yesterdays Journey website. Select "Bastardy Papers" on the left side, then "Etwall" from the list of parishes displayed.
  • As a result of the 1834 Poorlaw Amendment Act, this parish became a member of the Burton upon Trent Poorlaw Union.
  • Jophn SUTTON has a photograph of the Etwall Almshouses on Geo-graph, taken in 1997. These were endowed by Sir John PORT in 1556.
  • In 1912, these almshouses provided quarters for 16 poor men of the parish. Each man received 12 shillings per week.