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Our 2,745 members have registered
2,397 study surnames with us
and a further 6,089 variant names.

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About the study

Research into the ALPE group of names was originally part of a wider study of the surname ULPH and its variants. This began in 1978 and was registered with the *Guild of One-Name Studies* in 1983. Through DNA testing in the early 2000's we now have discovered that the ULPH and ALPE names are not related as previously thought. Hence the ONS has been split (2014) into separate ULPH and ALPE ONS projects. The aim of the ALPE ONS is to bring together holders of the names and their descendants through correspondence, newsletters and occasional clan gatherings.

Variant names


Name origin

The earliest known record of the spelling ALPE as a surname is 1281, and the earliest ALP is 1397 - both were in Norfolk.

Historical occurrences of the name

The ALPE family of mid-west Norfolk were prominent farmers and landowners in the 16th-19th centuries. Several are commemorated on monuments in the church of Little Fransham, west of Dereham. A branch of this family moved to the area of south-east Norfolk/north-east Suffolk in the 17th century and became established there as ALP. The ALPS variant derived from two families, one ALPE and one ALP, who settled in Cambridgeshire and County Durham in the 19th century.

Name frequency

Currently there are approximately 300 ALPs, 200 ALPEs and 90 ALPSes (including spouses) of British origin known to be living in the world.

Distribution of the name

By far the majority are still in England, although there are significant numbers of ALP and ALPS in Australia and ALPE in New Zealand.


Data held includes births, baptisms, adoptions, marriages, deaths, burials, wills, census entries, soldiers documents, trade directories and court records. Most of these are British records, but the study is worldwide and new information and contacts are always welcome. The *ULPH FAMILY HISTORY* book was published by Colin ULPH in 2005 contains references to the ALPE, ALP and ALPS names. A newsletter to project members will be sent out periodically to keep members up to date with progress. Please email with any hatches, matches or dispatches or relevant ALPE information and articles that may be of interest to other family members.


A DNA project for the name ALPE and its variants, which include ALP, ALPE and ALPS, was begun in August 2008. At present testing is confined to Y-DNA, for males only. For further details, email the address below.