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Our 2,766 members have registered
2,405 study surnames with us
and a further 6,120 variant names.

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About the study

I started my Billingham one name study in 1987 and joined the Guild in 1998. I have since amassed files of information and drawn up over 100 different family trees. Although I now live in Australia, thanks to the internet and availability of electonic sources such as CDs I can easily access new information to add to my research.

I welcome any comments, questions and extra information to add to this research. As this is my first edition of this webpage, more information will follow ...

Variant names

Because of the numerous errors in written records between Billingham & Bellingham I decided to expand the study to include Bellingham. The written e & i is easily mistaken. There is also a Billinghame variant which emerged in the 1850s in the north of England.

Name origin

Thought to originated from the Billas tribe, and the old English word 'hame' meaning home, hence home of the Billas tribe. Some of the earliest recording of the name are found in the north east of England in County Durham, around the town of Billingham. There is mention of a knight Sir Roger de Billingham in the 14/15th century in the County.

More information to follow ...

Historical occurrences of the name

Noteworthy Billinghams have included Rupert Everett Billingham, a pioneering heart surgeon; Jack Billingham, a top US baseball player in the 1960s-70s; Mark Billingham, actor, commedian & writer; and John Billingham, Lord Mayor of Cape Town. Prominent Bellinghams include farmer John Bellingham, the only man to assinate a British Prime Minister, Spencer Percival in 1812, and actress Linda Bellingham.

Name frequency

There have been around 9000 Billingham births, since 1837 in England and Wales.

More to follow ...

Distribution of the name

Billingham is chiefly found in the Black County, particularly between Stourbridge and Dudley (37%); Birmingham, West Bromwich, Walsall (12%); Northamptonshire (25%); Lancashire (9%); Gloucestershire & south Wales (7%); Yorkshire (4%); London (3%). Bellingham is chiefly found in the south east of England, including Sussex, Kent & south-east London, and Shropshire.


I have since collected all public register birth, deaths & marriages since 1837, plus details of wills since 1858, with some earlier. Parish record details, Census details 1841-1901 particularly from Black Country are covered, with many gravestone inscriptions.