Staffordshire Tithe Map Digitisation Project
A Project of the Friends of the Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent Archive Service
The tithe apportionment maps and awards resulted from the Tithe Commutation Act 1836. The majority of parishes/townships in the county were subject to tithe payments.
The maps and the accompanying awards provide an invaluable 'snapshot' of the ownership, tenancy and use of land in the first half of the nineteenth century, of use to both local and family historians.
Since 2008 a dedicated group of volunteers at Staffordshire Record Office has been indexing the tithe apportionment awards for Staffordshire parishes. Once completed, the indexes will be made available on the Staffordshire Name Indexes web site.
To complement this generous commitment of time the FoSSA Committee has decided to raise funds to enable the digitisation of the maps which accompany the awards. All of the Bishop of Lichfield’s copies of the tithe maps for Staffordshire (around 270) are included in the project, covering the majority of the historic county’s parishes.
We currently estimate that the sum required for high-quality digitisation is somewhere between £15,000 and £20,000. The final amount needed will depend upon the results of a commercial tendering process. The digitised maps will be available to view on computers at all archive service points in Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent. This will preserve the original maps from further wear-and-tear.
The funding challenge
The challenge is considerable, but we believe that with your help it is not unmanageable. We welcome general donations, as well as gifts targeted at the digitisation of specific maps. Out of an estimated target of £18,000 we have now have around £15,300, so we are over three-quarters of the way to our goal.
Of this sum, £13,800 has come from local societies, parish councils, county and city councillors, companies and individuals, to whom we are very grateful. Some is targeted at specific maps, and some reserved for maps without individual sponsors. We have also contributed £1,500 from our own resources, for which thanks go to all of our members.
The list of tithe maps, with suggested donations, can be found below. It will be updated regularly to indicate which maps have been sponsored by individuals or organisations. The current version (v22) dates from 12 December 2017.
Because they vary enormously in size we have chosen a funding model which avoids the opposite extremes of “one-price-fits-all” and a standard amount per square inch, which would have left some maps extremely difficult to find sponsorship for.
Any contribution that you can make will be much appreciated.
Richard Totty, Chairman, FoSSA
List of tithe maps, with suggested donations (745 KB)
FoSSA Donation Form (200 KB)
Further information about this project (181 KB)