Parish Records of 1570
Reading the Early Documents
Finding information from parish records from the 16th Century is not easy. When A William Read copied the registers in 1934, the early hand-writing must have been very difficult to read. This is apparent from the earliest surviving Bishop's Transcript, for 1570, presented below. Bishop's Transcripts were the yearly or half-yearly returns which the rector was required to make to the diocese detailing the recent register entries. A newly digitised version of Mr Read's type-written volumes is presented elsewhere on this site. Below is a scan of the surviving Bishop's Transcript from 1570, pre-dating the earliest register (1572). This has been interpreted by Richard Dunmore and his comments and transcription of the text appear below the image.
Bishop's Transcript, 1570
A contemporary copy – the 'Bishop's Transcript' - from the 1570 Appleby Parish Register is kept at the Leicestershire Record Office. The original register for this year has not survived.
I offer here my transcription of the rather difficult hand-writing. I have modernised the spelling, except for names which are presented as written, and my date interpolations have been added in square brackets. The year number changed at March 25th so the period covered appears to cover November 1569 to April 1570. Comparison with the earliest surviving registers (from 1572) shows an encouraging match with many of the surnames found.
The will of Andrew Merdell is recorded in the Public Record Office [PROB 11-53] (see the last burial). It was made on the 21st April 1570 and probate was granted on 6th February 1571 [modern calendar]. These dates support the conclusion that the period covered by the transcript is indeed November 1569 to April 1570.
THE 1570 BISHOP'S TRANSCRIPT
The Christenings due September for and held at Michaelmas 1570 [September 29th]
Thomas Molde the son of John Molde christened 1st November 
Ry[c]h Alred the son of Ry[c]h Alred the 6th day of November
Elsabeth Pratt was christened the 20th [blank - ?Novem] ber
Wyllm Robynson was christened the 10th day [blank - ?December]
Alys Foster was christened the 18th day of December
Ge[o]rge Choise [?Joyce]was christened the 6th day of January 
Joyce Peccher was christened the 2nd day of January
Dorrothe Baker was christened the 24th of February
Joycis Hyrpe [?Erpe] was christened the 12th day of March
Henry Chaplyn was christened the 22nd day of [blank - ?March]
Frances Margyre was christened the 11th day of [blank - ?April]
Thomas Cros[s] and Magerye Tonckye - - [?]
married the 26th day of November 
Susana Banester was buried the 12th day
Andrw Mederell was buried ye 22nd day of [blank - April 1570 – see the will mentioned above]
12th June, 13th year of the reign of Elizabeth, 1570
© Richard Dunmore July 2010.