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Coniscliffe

"The parish of Coniscliffe, which comprises the townships of High or Church Coniscliffe, and Low Coniscliffe, is bounded on the north by Heighington, on the west by Gainford, on the south by the river Tees, and on the east by Darlington. Its area is 3008 acres. The property was valued in 1893, at 4259.

"The village of Coniscliffe is beautifully situated along the brink of a long ridge of limestone rock, half a mile from the Tees, and on its north bank. The limestone has been wrought to the very walls of the churchyard, and on the vicarage stands almost on the extreme edge of the precipice, which here forms a perpendicular cliff. Coniscliffe is four and a half miles west of Darlington, and about a mile east from Piercebridge."

[From History, Topography and Directory of Durham, Whellan , London, 1894]

Cemeteries

The monumental inscriptions in the cemetery have been transcribed, indexed and published by the Cleveland Family History Society.
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Census

"The township of High Coniscliffe had in 1801 a population of 220; in 1811, 234; in 1821, 245; in 1831, 234; in 1841, 244; in 1851, 248; in 1861, 234; in 1871, 318; in 1881, 355; and in 1891, 349."

[From History, Topography and Directory of Durham, Whellan , London, 1894]

The 1851 Census Index (booklet 69) published by the Cleveland Family History Society may be of value to researchers interested in this parish.

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Church History

"The church is an ancient edifice, dedicated to St Edwin, consisting of nave, chancel, north aisle, and square tower at west end, which is surmounted by an octagonal spire. The chief features of the church are the tower and the entrance doorway under the north porch, the latter being of Norman character, with curiously carved arch stone s, the corner shafts having fallen away. The tower is of transitional date, but has been embattled at some point, as has the north aisle. The spire has been added some time after the building of the tower. Internally the church is very fine, the chancel arch, of Early English or Transitional date, is very beautiful, having the small nail-head ornamentation in the outer mould. It is supported upon two shafted corbels of keel form with carved capitals, the one on the south being quite Norman in design, and that on the north of somewhat later style, the cap being floriated. The East window consists of three lancets, filled with rich stained glass. The windows in the south wall are long, narrow and round headed, and those in the aisle wall are short lancets. The clerestory windows have trefoil heads under square hoods. The nave arcade is composed of five pointed arches, of two chamfered orders with plain hoodmoulds, supported upon cylindrical pillars, with shallow octagonal moulded caps.

"In 1892 it underwent a thorough restoration, when the church was reseated, the floor relaid with cement, the screen and altar erected, and other improvements were made at a cost of 600. A clock was also put in the tower."

[From History, Topography and Directory of Durham, Whellan , London, 1894]

There is a picture (48 kbytes) of the parish church of St. Edwin, Coniscliffe; supplied by Paul R. Joiner.

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Church Records

"The parish register commences in 1590." [From History, Topography and Directory of Durham, Whellan , London, 1894]

The Parish Registers for the period 1590-1979 are deposited at Durham County Record Office, County Hall, Durham, DH1 5UL (EP/Co).

Marriage indexes for 1590-1837 (24 kbytes) from the George Bell Collection of Durham and Northumberland Indexes.

The Marriages (1590-1837) are included in the Joiner Marriage Index.

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