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Help and advice for Lea

If you have found a problem on this page then please report it on the following form. We will then do our best to fix it. If you are wanting advice then the best place to ask is on the area's specific email lists. All the information that we have is in the web pages, so please do not ask us to supply something that is not there. We are not able to offer a research service.

If you wish to report a problem, or contribute information, then do use the following form to tell us about it. We have a number of people each maintaining different sections of the web site, so it is important to submit information via a link on the relevant page otherwise it is likely to go to the wrong person and may not be acted upon.


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  • The parish was in the Marton sub-district of the Gainsborough Registration District.
  • Check our Census Resource page for county-wide resources.
  • Lea had a census of 199 citizens on 24th May 1821. See our partial 1821 census extract.
  • The North Lincolnshire Library holds a copy of the parish census returns for 1841 through 1901.
  • The table below gives census piece numbers, where known:
Piece No.
1841 H.O. 107 / 639
1851 H.O. 107 / 2120
1861 R.G. 9 / 2411
1871 R.G. 10 / 3449
1891 R.G. 12 / 2637


You can also perform a more selective search for churches in the Lea area or see them printed on a map.


Church History

  • The Anglican Church is dedicated to Saint Helen.
  • The church is of early English architecture. The tower dates from around 1500.
  • Efforts have been made to preserve fragments of ancient stained glass in the existing windows. The church was restored in 1847.
  • The church seats 190.
  • St. Helen's contains a vault belonging to the ANDERSON family and a tomb with the recumbent crusader effigy of John de BRAOSE. Another tomb bears the likeness of Sir Radulf TREHAMPTON. There is also a tomb of Sir Thomas BURGH and his lady, damaged when Gainsborough old church was torn down.
  • The church also contains a tablet memorial to the Rev. Richard Thomas LOWE and his wife Katherine Maria, who died when the SS Liberia sank after a collision while enroute to Madeira in April 1874.
  • To the east of the church is the site of Hevenynge, or Heynings Nunnery, which was founded by Reynerus EVERMUE before the year 1180 for Gilbertine nuns. At the dissolution of the monestaries, it was granted to Sir Thomas HENEAGE. In the mid 1800s, fish ponds dotted this site, now called Hermit Dams. Some contend that the Nunnery was never here and that the site is the former location of the Manor House.
  • A photograph of St. Helen's church is at the Wendy PARKINSON English Church Photographs site.
  • Richard CROFT has a photograph of St. Helen's Church on Geo-graph, taken in 2013.
  • Mr. CROFT also has a photograph of the church interior on Geo-graph, taken in 2013.
  • Here is a photo of St. Helen's church, taken by Ron COLE (who retains the copyright):

St. Helen's church

Church Records

  • Parish register entries start in 1603, although Bishop's transcripts go back to 1599.
  • Burial register entries for St. Helen (1813-1900) are included in the National Burial Index (NBI).
  • The North Lincolnshire Library holds a copy of the parish register entries for baptisms 1600-1812, burials 1600-1812 and marriages 1600-1837.
  • And the Society of Genealogists have the parish registers on file for 1606-1709.
  • The LFHS has published several marriage indexes for the Corringham Deanery to make your search easier.
  • Richard CROFT has a photograph of the Lea Methodist Church on Geo-graph, taken in 2006.
  • Check our Church Records page for county-wide resources.

Civil Registration

  • The parish was in the Marton sub-district of the Gainsborough Registration District.
  • Check our Civil Registration page for sources and background on Civil Registration which began in July, 1837.

Description and Travel

Lea is both a village and a parish about 2 miles south-south-east of Gainsborough and about 146 miles north of London. The Trent River forms the western parish border, Upton cum Kexby parish lies to the east and Knaith parish to the south. The parish covered about 2,050 acres in 1842. At that time, the parish included the hamlets of Lea Wood and Lea Marsh, as well as two small spots on the Nottinghamshire side of the river, the Bole and Burton Ferries, created when the Trent forged a new path through the parish. Those have since (circa 1900) been transferred to Nottinghamshire, reducing the size of the parish to about 1,950 acres.

In 1842, the village of Lea still contained many thatched dwellings, "finely shaded with trees". The village lies astride the Torksey Road. If you are planning a visit:

  • Take the A156 (Torksey Road) south out of Gainsborough for about two miles. The village center is where the B1247 starts on its eastward leg toward Kexby.
  • Thurlby is a wooded area just northeast of the village.
  • The railway station opened in 1849 as part of the Great Northern Railway. Rail service for passengers ended in 1957 and goods in 1963.
  • Visit our touring page for more sources.

You can see pictures of Lea which are provided by:



Ask for a calculation of the distance from Lea to another place.

Click here for a list of nearby places.


Historical Geography

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



  • The railway came to Lea about 1848, installing a station about a mile from the village. It was on the Spalding and Doncaster section of the Great Northern (and later Great Eastern joint) Railway.

Land and Property

  • The manor of Lea passed from Sir Radulf TREHAMPTON to the BRAOSE and NUTHILL families, then to the BURGHs of Gainsborough, and from the latter the the DALYSONs (or DALLISON), who sold it to Sir Edmund ANDERSON in the reign of Queen Elizabeth.
  • In 1842, the chief landowner was the Rev. Sir Charles John ANDERSON, baronet and lord of the manor.
  • In 1872 and 1882, the chief landowner was Sir Charles Henry John ANDERSON, Lea Hall, baronet and lord of the manor.
  • In 1900, the chief landowner was Miss ANDERSON, Lea Hall, lady of the manor.
  • In 1913, the chief landowner was Mrs. DUNCOMBE-ANDERSON, lady of the manor.


  • Lea Hall is in a small dale near the village, and is very ancient, but not architecturally signifigant. It is a brick building, partly covered with ivy.
  • In 1913, Mr. Phipps Bentley FOSTER occupied the manor house.

Names, Geographical

  • The name is from the Old English leah, meaning "woodland clearing". It appeared in the 1086 Domesday Book as Lea. Some sources use the spelling "Lee".
    [A. D. Mills, "A Dictionary of English Place-Names," Oxford University Press, 1991].

Names, Personal

  • See our list of local citizens from the partial 1821 census extract.
  • White's 1842 Directory lists the following surnames in the parish: ANDERSON, ASHFORTH, ATKINSON, BEAUMONT, HEWITT, IBBETSON, KAYE, LUND, MAYER, SOUTH, STAINTON, SWIFT and WARD.
  • White's 1872 Directory lists the following surnames in the parish: ANDERSON, ANYAN, BEAUMONT, CODD, ELLIS, FROST, HEATH, HORTON, LOWE, LUND, RANDS, STANCER, STOCKELD, SWIFT, TAYLOR, UZZELL and WARD.
  • Kelly's 1900 Directory lists the following surnames in the parish: ANDERSON, ANYAN, ATKINSON, BEAUMONT, CAPES, EMMENS, FOOKES, GODFREY, LANCASTER, LUNN, MATTHEWS, RHODES, STANSER and WARD.
  • Kelly's 1913 Directory lists the following surnames in the parish: ANYAN, BRADLEY, CAPES, EMMENS, FOOKES, FOSTER, HEWITT, HILL, LANCASTER, LUNN and STANSER.

Politics and Government

  • This place was an ancient parish of Lincolnshire and became a Civil Parish when those were established.
  • The parish was in the ancient Corringham Wapentake in the West Lindsey district in the parts of Lindsey.
  • You may contact the local Lea Parish Council regarding civic or political issues, but they are NOT funded nor staffed to assist you with family history questions.
  • Today's district governance is provided by the West Lindsey District Council.

Poor Houses, Poor Law etc.



Year Inhabitants
1801 180
1821 199
1831 197
1851 229
1861 194
1871 162
1891 188
1911 184


  • The first school was erected here in 1814 by lady ANDERSON.
  • A school for up to 60 children was built here in 1843.
  • For more on researching school records, see our Schools Research page.