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Wills - Probate Records from 1858

Wills and Administrations from 1858

On 12th January 1858, probate jurisdiction was taken away from the church and moved to a new secular Court of Probate. Thus, from 1858 onwards, The Principal Probate Registry had the authority for probating estates. A Principal Probate Registry was established in London in January 1858, and several district probate registries were created around the country; this included Worcester, where the majority of Badsey and Wickhamford wills were proved. From then on, the registries oversaw all grants of probate and letters of administration. They are indexed annually in the National Probate Register; a copy of this index from 1858-1966 and 1973-1995 may be viewed on Ancestry.

For wills which were proved at Worcester, in many instances there is a transcription of the will on this website. If the will has not been transcribed, a copy of the will may be viewed on microfilm at The Hive in Worcester. There is also a useful publication, “Index to Registers of Wills proved in Worcester District Probate Registry, 1858-1928”, compiled by H H Gowers, 1973.

If you wish to order a copy of any will or grant listed since 1858, you can do so for a fee from the Principal Probate Registry at First Avenue House or any district probate registry. You will need to provide the full name of the deceased, the date of the grant and the registry where it was issued.