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Places of Worship Guide

Records of Church of England parishes

London Metropolitan Archives is the designated place of deposit for Church of England records. Tower Hamlets Local History Library and Archives has no original Church of England registers. We hold copies on microfilm of some registers of baptisms, marriages and burials. See Digital and Microfilm Copies for further details.

Explore entries relating to Black and Asian communities in Switching the Lens: Black and Asian presence in parish registers. This dataset includes entries from 16th century onward. The project includes Tower Hamlets Church of England parish registers at London Metropolitan Archives.

We hold records of non-Church of England churches and other places of worship in Tower Hamlets. These are referenced under Places of Worship - reference: W/. We hold archives for the following: 

  • Bethnal Green United Reformed (formerly Congregational) Church ref: W/BGU
  • Central Hall of the Mildmay Mission to the Jews, Philpot Street ref: W/CHM
  • Coverdale and Ebenezer Congregational Church, Watney Street, Stepney ref: W/CAE
    This collection includes
    • Coverdale Chapel, Limehouse;
    • Ebenezer Chapel, Shadwell (later Brunswick and Ebenezer Congregational Church, Watney Street, Stepney);
    • Brunswick Congregational Church, Whitechapel;
    • Iron Chapel, Mile End Road (later known as Mile End Road Congregational Church).
  • Cubitt Town Primitive Methodist Church register of baptisms ref: W/CTP
  • East London (Baptist) Tabernacle, Burdett Road ref: W/ELT
  • Good Shepherd Mission, Bethnal Green ref: W/GSM
  • Little Alie Street Baptist Church, Whitechapel ref: W/LAS
  • Latimer Congregational Church, Mile End ref: W/LAT
  • Lighthouse Baptist Church, Bromley-by-Bow ref: W/LBC
  • The Out and Out Christian Mission, Bow ref: W/OAO
  • Poplar Methodist Church, East India Dock Road, Poplar ref: W/PMC
    This collection includes
    • Bow Road Methodist Church;
    • Cubitt Town Methodist Church;
    • St. George's Methodist Centenary Chapel, Cable Street;
    • The Lycett Methodist Church, Mile End;
    • Wesleyan Methodist Chapel, Dee Street, Bromley-by-Bow.
  • St. George's German Lutheran Church and St. Paul's German Reformed Church, Whitechapel ref: W/SGG
  • Stepney Meeting House and John Knox Presbyterian Church ref: W/SMH
  • Tower Hamlets Mission ref: W/THM
  • Trinity United Reformed (formerly Congregational) Church, Poplar ref: W/TUC
  • Victoria Park Baptist Church, Bethnal Green ref: W/VPB
  • Princes (later Princelet) Street Synagogue, Spitalfields ref: W/PRI
  • Spitalfields Great Synagogue, 59 Brick Lane ref: W/SGS

The contents of the above collections vary. For example, the archives for Princes Street Synagogue consists of three records. There are over 485 items in the collections of St. George's German Lutheran Church and St. Paul's German Reformed Church. Search the catalogue descriptions for further details.

Many references to places of worship are available in the wider archive, image and library collections.

Other archives include:

  • Diaries of Reverend Dan Greatorex, Vicar of St. Paul, Dock Street, Whitechapel, 1852-1892, ref: P/GXT
  • Research and photographs of Bradley Snooks relating to the history of Bow, 1980s-2000. Includes local Bow churches and other places of worship, ref: P/SNO

Library collections include:

  • books
  • pamphlets
  • press cuttings
  • photographs
  • local newspapers
  • large collection of Church of England parish magazines and other church newsletters. Highlights are early 19th century dissenting and evangelical magazines and sermons

Materials include:

  • Christian places of worship
  • Jewish synagogues
  • Brick Lane Mosque
  • East London Mosque
  • London Buddhist Centre
  • Friends of the Western Buddhist Order.

Use our historic map collection to trace locations of past and present places of worship.

Search Ancestry Library Edition for London Parish Registers held by London Metropolitan Archives. Further series include non-conformist registers held at The National Archives. This resource is available for free for visitors to access in all Tower Hamlets Idea Stores and libraries.

We hold microfilm copies of parish registers, mainly pre-1870, for the following Church of England churches:

  • St. Matthew's, Bethnal Green
  • St. Mary's, Bow
  • St. Anne's, Limehouse
  • Poplar Chapel, Poplar
  • All Saints, Poplar
  • St. Paul's, Shadwell
  • St. Dunstan's, Stepney
  • St. George-in-the-East
  • Christ Church, Spitalfields
  • St. Mary's, Spital Square
  • St. John at Wapping, Limehouse

We also hold copies on microfilm of:

  • registers of the Great Synagogue, Duke's Place, Aldgate
  • non-conformist registers held at The National Archives.