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Tithe maps represent one of the first large-scale, systematic mapping survey of England and Wales. Dating from c.1836 they show dwellings and land use and give details of property owners.
Tithing was an ancient custom where one tenth of local produce was given to support the church and clergy. The Tithe Commutation Act 1836 replaced such tithes in kind with money payments.
These payments (or rent charges as they were known) were paid by all parishioners in proportion to the amount of land they held. We cover 1830s to 1880s.
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The 1836 Act made it necessary to ascertain the extent of existing tithe values in an area and the circumstance where tithes were still being paid in kind.
The land needed to be surveyed and valued to get the total parish rent charge figure and, finally, each individual landowner’s liability had to be calculated.
If all parties agreed to the terms, they were formalised in a document called a tithe agreement. If arbitration was required then a tithe award was produced.
Agreement or award formed the basis of the tithe apportionment which set out individual landowner’s liability.
A map of the relevant area accompanied the apportionment.
Sheffield Archives, 52 Shoreham Street, Sheffield.
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Original paper or parchment records. Some items are available on microfilm.