The Bednall Collection

The Bednall Archive"


Last updated: 15/10/2014

Database Contents

The "Bednall Collection" is a private archive of original manuscripts and other documents, ledgers, plans and photographs,  amassed  while researching the Badnall, Bednall,  etc. family names in general and our own history in particular.  It contains information about these and many other names.    Some of the items, the late 18th century account book of a Congleton shopkeeper or the recipe book of a Leek firm of silk dyers, for example, are also of interest to local historians, particularly those studying the silk industries of Leek in Staffordshire and Macclesfield in Cheshire.

William Challinor of Leek, Staffordshire, one of the founding partners of Challinor, Badnall & Challinor solicitors in 1854, which combinded the former Killmister & Challinor practice with  the Cruso firm of solicitors and land agents.  The Cruso family had themselves taken over the practice established in Leek in the 17th century by the Parker family (later Earls of Macclesfield) from  the Mills family at the turn of the 19th century. In the late 1980s, therefore, Challinor and Co's archi ves  contained  material collected over  a period of 350+ years.  A large quantity of the material is now available at the Staffordshire Record Office but  a much larger quantity has been dispersed by sale.Many of the documents came from the dispersed archives of solicitors in the town of Leek, in Staffordshire and thus most of the names referred to are those of families living in North Staffordshire or South East Cheshire. Some of the documents, however, relate to people living in other parts of England and elsewhere in the World e.g. Canada, Australia and France. We  are gradually acquiring other documents and will add further sections to our database from time to time. 

This database  gives  the names of people mentioned in the documents as well as dates, place names and (in many cases) detailed descriptions of the contents of documents. 

For further information about names (or documents) of interest please send details together with the full Bednall Collection reference number (BC2/1028  for example) to Webmaster             

Some Interesting Items

Amongst the more interesting items added to the  Collection are:  
(1) Account book and other documents
apparently relating to buildings, lands, tithes, rents, and emoluments belonging to the Rectory Vicarage or Incumbency of St. Edward's, Leek in the Archdeaconry of Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire and dating, generally between 1916 and 1927.  

(2) A bundle of eight cases concerning the removal of paupers (Derbyshire-Staffordshire).  

A draft conveyance , dated 1744, of Leek tithes  of hay, from Thomas Joliffe of Coston, Worcestershire to William Mills of Leek, Staffordshire, which describes the boundary of the area of Leek & Lowe on which the tithes are paid.

A bundle of (39) memoranda of agreements between Michael Biddulph, esq, and the Revd. Benjamin Biddulph (on behalf of themselves and their brother Francis Biddulph esq.) and various individuals,  for the sale and conveyance of specified properties forming part of the Biddulph family's estates in Staffordshire, to the named individuals for  specified sums. All dated 1765.

(5) The Quietus Roll of Walter Chetwynde of Ingestre Hall, High Sheriff of Staffordshire 1685 - 1686. This records the Sheriff's accounts for his year in office giving brief details of payments made for various purposes and moneys received from Staffordshire Hundreds,  individuals, etc. The document is in Latin and about 8ft long. It will be transcribed and the transcript made available in the near future.

(6) A collection of deeds relating to the Sneyd family of Ashcombe, Belmont and  Bishton,  Staffordshire,1761-1890, which includes several marriage settlements and details of the £40000 Sneyd Estate. The latter gives tenants' names, the amount and value of the land occupied, rents etc.


Other Miscellaneous Items

Appeal for donations for the Proposed Maude Church Institute to be erected on Clerks Bank, Leek. Staffordshire  1896 Leek Town Land Ad 1842.jpg (462972 bytes) A bond, dated 12 November 1678, between Humphrey Ridgway of Leek, Staffordshire, shoemaker and John Cheshire of Derby, gentleman, in the sum of £60, by which Humphrey Ridgway and his heirs guarantee to "well and truly observe  perform fulfil pay and keep all and singular the covenants grants articles payments promises  provisoes and agreements which on the part and behalf of the said Humphrey Ridgway his executors administrators and assigns or any of them are or ought to be observed fulfilled performed and kept mentioned contained and specified in one pair of indentures bearing date with the above written obligation And made between the above bounden Humphrey Ridgway of the one part and the above named John Cheshire of the other part." BC2-1287

Trade bill of Swindells & Co, Leek, Staffordshire. This and similar bills can provide useful information about local firms and their directors or owners and products.

Silk thread bobbin labels carryin trademarks of theTrafford  Company of Leek, Straffordshire.
Extract from the Quietus Roll of Walter Chetwynde of Ingestre Hall, High Sheriff of Staffordshire 1685 - 1686. A page from a copy book will of Charles-Flint of Leek, Staffordshire. NB  only photos of this now in Bednall Collection. The Books are in the Gawsworth Barn Collection. Mrs Bradshaw's bill for her stay at a continental hotel. On one occasion  when recommended to spend some time on the Continent for her health, she took her doctor with her and had a private carriage. Pages from Leek Town Lands Minute Book 1711-  

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