Discover your ancestor who got married in one of 97 parishes in Berkshire, England, between 1538 and 1927. These records may reveal your relative’s name, age, spouse details, and possibly their marital status, occupations, and names of witnesses. Included in these records are those of John Lovelace, 3rd Baron Lovelace of Hurley, who married Martha Pye in 1662 and was involved in the Glorious Revolution of 1688.
Each record comprises a transcript of the original marriage register. The amount of information listed varies, but the records usually include a combination of the following information about your ancestor:
• Bride’s first name
• Groom’s first name
• Groom’s last name
• How married (by banns or licence)
Later records may include additional details. These further details may include:
• Bride’s last name
• Bride’s marital status
• Groom’s marital status
• Bride’s age
• Groom’s age
• Bride’s address
• Groom’s address
• Bride’s occupation
• Groom’s occupation
• Bride’s father’s name
• Bride’s father’s occupation
• Groom’s father’s name
• Groom’s father’s occupation
• Notes (including officiating minister, consent of parents)
The record set comprises over 230,088 records from 97 parishes in Berkshire, England.
These records date from 1538 to 1927.
The vast majority of marriages were conducted by banns, with over 28,500 by licence.
Berkshire is a county in southeast England, located to the west of London. It’s known as the Royal County of Berkshire due to the presence of Windsor Castle. Reading is the county town of Berkshire.
On 1 March 1919, James Earl married Amy Povey in Holy Trinity Church, Grazeley, Berkshire. Their happiness was not to last, however. The record notes state: “This was only a marriage in form. James Earl was soon afterwards found guilty of bigamy.”
There are 16,163 records of widows and widowers, some of whom married each other.
There are 18 records of “illegitimate” individuals getting married. In most cases, this is indicated in the category “Bride’s father’s name” or “Groom’s father’s name.”
Marriage records are an essential part of researching your family history. There are records where the parents of the bride and groom are listed, and these are often the key to finding out the names of the generation before. Occasionally, ages of the couple may be listed as "full" rather than as a figure. This was a customary way of noting that they were over the required age of 21. If the bride or groom was under the age of 21, “with consent of parents” is noted in the record. Please note that no images are included in the records.
John Lovelace, 3rd Baron of Hurley
In 1661, the year before his wedding to Martha Pye, John Lovelace was elected MP for Berkshire in the Cavalier Parliament. He sat until 1670 when he inherited the peerage on the death of his father. Lovelace developed a reputation as a keen Whig, and although he professed to be a Puritan, he was notorious as a heavy drinker and gambler. Notoriously anti-Catholic, Lovelace created a scandal when a Catholic magistrate sent him a summons in 1688, and he wiped his bottom with it in public. He was severely reprimanded by the Privy Council and threatened with prosecution. He was admitted into the confidence of those who planned the Glorious Revolution to replace the Catholic James II with the Protestant William of Orange. In March 1688, Lovelace was summoned before the Privy Council, but was released on insufficient evidence. He organised secret meetings in a cellar at his Ladye Place home in Hurley, where in September 1690, he was visited by King William. Lovelace’s drinking excesses hastened his decline, and he died in 1693, leaving behind his widow, Martha, and three daughters.