Catalogues & documents

This page provides links to some of the catalogues, lists and transcriptions of material held by the Record Office. They have been produced with the assistance of volunteer Friends.


(To search a PDF index, use the FIND option (Ctrl-F) in Adobe Reader and enter a keyword or phrase. This will highlight each occurrence of the term in the index.)


Index to the Photo Centre Collection

General Index   (Everything except portraits. PDF format;  c.3 MB)   Updated to June 2022.

Portraits and Passports Index  (Black & white, complete. PDF c.2 MB)   Updated December 2018.

The Photo Centre was a family-run photographic business in Berwick which operated from 1950 until 2012. The collection consists of glass plates (black & white) and negatives (black & white and colour) and provides a wonderful pictorial record of events in North Northumberland and the Scottish borders in that period. It includes local events and festivals as well as numerous weddings pictures.  (The photographs can be consulted in the Record Office; use the Indexes to obtain the reference numbers of those that you are interested in. For copies and queries contact Berwick Record Office:  Email: )  More information about the collection can be found on the Photo Centre collection website.



The Corn Exchange

The history of Berwick’s Corn Exchange has been well represented in reports and advertisements in the local newspapers. A chronological transcript of items in the Berwick Advertiser in which the Corn Exchange is featured now makes an important part of this information readily accessible, in a series of downloadable PDF documents. These documents commence with the first meetings in 1856 which planned the building of the Exchange, and they then record the events which took place there, often with detailed descriptions of proceedings, as well as listing the names of many individuals, both native to Berwick and visitors, who have been involved in its history.

The links to the documents are on the Corn Exchange page.

Poor Law records

Before 1834, under the Old Poor Law, relief for the poor was organised at parish level and its administration was overseen by a committee of Churchwardens, Overseers, and Trustees.  The Poor Law Amendment Act of 1834 brought in a system which was overseen at national level by the Poor Law Commission/Poor Law Board.  At local level it was administered by a Board of Guardians.  Berwick Record Office holds volumes of the records of these local bodies. They describe the policy and practice of providing assistance to the poor as well as the administration of the Workhouse.  Some of the volumes which have been listed by volunteer Friends can be found below.  They are catalogues rather than transcripts. The files are in PDF format.


Minutes of the Churchwardens and Overseers Committee / Parish of Berwick-upon-Tweed

GBR 1  (February 1791 – 2 May 1819)

GBR 1  Churchwarden, Overseers, and Trustees mentioned in the period 1791-1819

GBR 1  Paupers who have proved their settlement in the parish of Berwick-upon-Tweed

GBR 2  (25 August 1825 – September 1831)

GBR 2  Churchwardens, Overseers and Vestrymen mentioned in the period 1825-1831

GBR 2  Receipts & expenditure of Overseers, Sept.1825 – March 1828

GBR 2  Lists of those receiving relief, and their amounts, Aug. 1825 – March 1828

See also:

Indexes of names of inmates in Berwick Workhouse


Minutes of the Board of Guardians / Berwick-upon-Tweed Poor Law Union

GBR 38  (7 July 1840 – 26 April 1842)

GBR 39  (11 April 1843 – 27 January 1846)

GBR 40  (10 February 1846 – 11 June 1849)

GBR 41  (26 June 1849 – 25 April 1852)

GBR 42 (7 June 1852 – 25 May 1854)

GBR 43  (19 June 1854 – 10 March 1856)

GBR 44  (24 March 1856 – 4 April 1859)

GBR 45 (18 April 1859 – 8 July 1861)

GBR 46  (22 July 1861 – 26 October 1863)

GBR 48  (26 March 1866 – 10 February 1868)

GBR 49  (24 February 1868 – 21 March 1870)

GBR 50  (4 April 1870 – 8 April 1872)

GBR 51  (15 April 1872 – 6 July 1874)

GBR 52  (20 July 1874 – 11 September 1876)

GBR 53  (25 September 1876 – 7 April 1879)

GBR 54  (21 April 1879 – 22 August 1881)


Board of Guardians correspondence books / Berwick-upon-Tweed Poor Law Union

GBR 77  (incoming correspondence from the Poor Law Board to Berwick Union 1852 – 1855)

GBR 78  (incoming correspondence from the Poor Law Board to Berwick Union 1856 – 1858)

GBR 79  (incoming correspondence from the Poor Law Board to Berwick Union: 1859 – 1861)

GBR 80  (incoming correspondence from the Poor Law Board to Berwick Union:  1862 – 1866)

GBR 81  (outgoing correspondence from Berwick Union:  March 1859 – September 1864)

GBR 82  (outgoing correspondence from Berwick Union: February 1880 – May 1882)

GBR 83  (outgoing correspondence from Berwick Union: May 1882 – November 1884)

GBR 84  (outgoing correspondence from Berwick Union: December 1884 – September 1889)


INDEXES of names of inmates in Berwick Workhouse


Belford Poor Law Union

The Belford Union consisted of the following parishes and townships: Adderstone; Bamburgh; Bamburgh Castle; Beadnell; Belford; Bradford; Budle; Burton; Chathill; Detchant; Easington; Easington Grange; Elford; Ellingham; Elwick; Fleetham; Glororum; Hoppen; Lucker; Middleton; Monk’s House; Mousen; Newham; Newstead; Outchester; Preston; Ratchwood; Ross; Shoston or Shoreston; Spindleston; Sunderland; Swinhoe; Tughall; Warenford; Warenton.

Minutes of the Board of Guardians:

GBF 1  (22 November 1836 – 23 March 1841)

GBF 10  (18 October 1882 – 31 May 1888)


Glendale Poor Law Union

The Glendale Union covered 45 parishes and townships:  Akeld; Bewick, New; Bewick, Old; Brandon; Branton; Branxton; Carham; Chatton; Chillingham; Coldsmouth and Thompson’s Wall; Coupland; Crookhouse; Doddington; Earle: Ewart; Fawdon and Clinch; Ford; Grey’s Forest; Heathpool; Hepburn; Howtell; Humbleton; Ilderton; Ingram; Kilham; Kirknewton; Lanton; Lilburn East; Lilburn, West; Lowick; Middleton Hall; Middleton, North; Middleton, South; Milfield; Nesbit; Newton; Paston; Reavley; Roddam; Roseden; Selby’s Forest; Westnewton; Wooperton; Wooler; Yeavering. There is one surviving volume of the Minutes of the Board of Guardians:

GGL 1  (23 August 1883 – 7 July 1887)



First World War documents

The Northumberland At War project has examined local archive collections for material illustrating local aspects of the war. The documents produced by many volunteers makes much of the information accessible for the first time.  The following lists are now available as PDF downloads:


Register of arrivals in Berwick, from October 1915 to July 1919  (D8-9)

Register of removals within Berwick, from August 1915 to June 1919  (D8-10)

Register of removals from Berwick to outside the area, from August 1915 to June 1919  (D8-10)

Military Tribunals reported in the Berwick Advertiser 1916

Berwick Petty Sessions courts 1914 – 1915

Glendale Petty Sessions courts 1915 – 1920

Norham & Islandshire Petty Sessions courts 1915 – 1923

Admissions to the Honorary Freedom of Berwick 1920 – 1927

For more information and all the links to these documents, go to the First World War project page.



Our Families project

The data collected in the project about local families and properties in High Greens, Low Greens, and Ravensdowne can be seen on the Our Families pages.


Waite and Sea project

An outline of the findings from the project, which explored the musical heritage of the Berwick area, can be seen on the Waite and Sea page.