Guild of One-Name Studies
One-name studies, Genealogy
Variants: Belerby, Bellaby, Bellerby
Category: 3 - A study where research using core genealogical datasets and transcriptions is well under way on a global basis.
Contact: Peter William Bellarby
This study is concerned with the surnames Bellarby/Bellerby/Bellaby and variants of these. It seems likely that Bellaby and Bellarby/Bellerby are two distinct surnames. However, the surnames are so similar that a combined study is sensible. There are many examples in the historic records such as the spelling Bellaby occurring on an odd occasion in a family where the spelling is usually Bellerby or Bellarby.
I welcome contact from anyone interested in these surnames from any part of the world.
There seems little doubt that the origin of the surname Bellerby/Bellarby comes from the village of Bellerby in North Yorkshire, England, UK. Although the name of the village is usually spelt Bellerby it is sometimes found as Bellarby. The surname appears historically primarily in the English counties of Yorkshire and Durham. The presence in these counties continues to the present day.
The surname Bellaby is predominantly found historically in the English county of Nottinghamshire.
The following table shows the distribution of births where the surname is recorded as Bellaby, Bellarby or Bellerby in the birth certificate index of the General Register Office for England and Wales. The period covered is from mid-1837, when civil registration started, to the end of 1916.
Bedfordshire and Northamptonshire
County Durham and Yorkshire
Derbyshire and Leicestershire
Derbyshire, Leicestershire and Nottinghamshire
Lancashire and Cheshire
Lancashire and Yorkshire
Leicestershire and Nottinghamshire
London and Kent
London and Middlesex
Middlesex, Essex and Hertfordshire
Monmouthshire and Glamorgan
Shropshire and Montgomeryshire
Shropshire and Staffordshire
Staffordshire, Derbyshire and Warwickshire
Surrey and London
Warwickshire, Staffordshire and Worcestershire
Yorkshire, Nottinghamshire and Lincolnshire
The above table updated/corrected 26/10/2017.
The birth certificate index does not include reference to the county where a birth was registered, but does include the registration district. Registration districts often included parts of more than one county, which is why there entries in the County column in the table above which have two or three counties. The counties I have used are historic counties. I have regarded Yorkshire and Lincolnshire as single counties and not used the division into ridings or parts. In the nineteenth century some counties, such as Suffolk, were divided into two counties for administrative purposes. I have disregarded this. I have also disregarded the setting up of county boroughs, which resulted in some towns being regarded as counties in their own right as well as being part of the county they were previously in.
You may find our other Guild websites of interest: