Description in 1871:
"SWANNINGTON, a village, a township, and a chapelry, in Whitwick parish, Leicester. The village stands on the Leicester and Swannington railway, in a valley encompassed by gently rising hills, and well-watered by several fine springs, 3¾ miles E by S of Ashby-de-Ia-Zouch; and has a station on the railway, and a post-office under Ashby-de-la-Zouch.

The township comprises 1,450 acres. Real property, £8,360; of which £4,132 are in mines. Pop. in 1851, 822; in 1861, 1,276. Houses, 285. The manor belongs to Wyggestone's Hospital. Coal abounds, and is largely worked.-The chapelry is larger than the township. The living is a p. curacy in the diocese of Peterborough. Value, £140. Patron,, the Vicar of Whitwick. The church is very plain. There are national schools."
[John Marius WILSON's "Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales", 1870-72]



  • The parish was in the Whitwick subdistrict of the Ashby-de-la-Zouch Registration District.
  • The 1851 census for Leicestershire has been indexed by the Leicestershire & Rutland Family History Society. The whole index is available on microfiche. The society has also published it in print.
  • The table below gives census piece numbers, where known:
Piece No.
1861 R.G. 9 / 2271
1871 R.G. 10 / 3251
1891 R.G. 12 / 2513

Church History

  • The chapel (later to be designated a Church) was built in 1825 (or 1828, depending on the source used).
  • The ecclesiastical parish was formed in 1875.
  • The Anglican parish church is dedicated to Saint George.
  • The church was extensively altered and additions made in 1904.
  • The church seats 266.
  • The church is a Grade II structure with English Heritage.

Church Records

  • The Anglican parish register dates from 1853 for marriages and 1827 for baptisms and burials.
  • The church is in the rural deanery of West Akeley.
  • The local Quakers held their first national meeting here in 1654. The movement declined and left the village at the end of the 18th century.
  • The Wesleyan Methodists, the Primitive Methodists and the Baptists each had a chapel here prior to 1881.
  • Richard GREEN has a photograph of the former Primitive Methodist Chaple on Geo-graph, taken in August, 2010.

Civil Registration

  • The parish was in the Whitwick sub-district of the Ashby-de-la-Zouch Registration District.
  • Civil Registration started in July, 1837.
  • Reminder: This place did not become a parish until late 1866.

Description & Travel

Swannington is a Civil Parish, a township and a village. It lies 4 miles due east of Ashby-de-la-Zouch, 16 miles north-west of Leicester and 120 miles north of London. "New Swannington" is a hamlet in this parish. The parish covers 1,157 acres.

The village sits in a valley encompassed by low hills. If you are planning a visit:

  • By automobile, take the A50 west out of Leicester city to Ashby-de-la-Zouch. Swannington is just two miles beyond.
  • Richard GREEN has a photograph of the elaborate village sign on Geo-graph, taken in August, 2010.
You can see pictures of Swannington which are provided by:




Historical Geography

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



  • A great deal of coal was mined in the parish. At one time, 4,000 tons were sent weekly to Leicester city.
  • There is still a rail line south of the village, but no passenger service is reported.
  • You may be interested in the work of the Swannington Heritage Trust. You may find some of the web pages easier to read if you highlight them.


  • Swannington House was the residence of the BEAUMONT family for many years.


  • See our Maps page for additional resources.

You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SK415161 (Lat/Lon: 52.740657, -1.387024), Swannington which are provided by:


Medical Records

  • The Ashby-de-la-Zouch Rural District Infectious Diseases Hospital was built here in 1884. It was designed to hold only six patients. It is not reported what patient records may exist.

Military History

There is a brass plaque in St. George's Church that is a memorial to the men of World War I.


Politics & Government

  • For centuries, this place was a chapelry and one of three townships in Whitwick parish.
  • This place was also known as "Whitwick St. George".
  • Swannington became a modern Civil Parish in December 1866 during a drive to extend civil government to all people. One of the reasons was the great population increae in Swannington at that time.
  • The parish was in the ancient West Goscote Hundred in the Northern (or Western) division of the county.
  • On 29 September, 1894, the parish was reduced in size to help create Coalville Civil Parish.
  • On 1 April, 1912, 24 acres of this parish were transferred to enlarge Coalville Civil Parish.
  • On 1 April, 1936, this Civil Parish was reduced by 401 acres to enlarge Coalville Civil Parish and 42 acres which went to Coleorton Civil Parish. On that same date, in return, the parish gained a different 24 acres from Coleorton Civil Parish and 70 acres from the abolition of Thringstone Civil Parish.
  • You may contact the local Parish Council regarding civic or political matters, but they are NOT staffed to assist you with family history searches.
  • District governance is provided by the North West Leicsetershire District Council.

Poor Houses, Poor Law

  • Bastardy cases would be heard in the Ashby-de-la-Zouch petty session hearings.
  • As a result of the 1834 Poor Law Amendment Act, Swannington became part of the Ashby-de-la-Zouch Poorlaw Union.


 Year Inhabitants
1841 744
1851 822
1861 1,276
1871 1,586
1881 1,417
1891 1,711
1901 1,737
1911 2,050
1921 2,113
1931 2,239
1951 1,509


  • The parish built a National School (later a Public Elementary School) in 1862 to hold 176 children.
  • The parish built a Public Elementary School for infants in 1894 to hold 120 young children.
  • A Public Elementary School was opened in New Swannington in 1907 to hold 100 children.