This section has a searchable database of names, addresses and occupations which has been compiled from trade directories, telephone directories, electoral registers, censuses and the 1939 register between the years of 1841 and 1939. Many of these documents contain errors, mainly different spellings for names and incomplete addresses. Where possible I have tried to identify correct names and addresses by cross referencing documents.

Trade Directories

Trade directories have been produced since about 1700, they list businesses and tradespeople, as well as details of local gentry, landowners, schools and churches. The earliest directory used in compiling this database is Bagshaw's directory of Cheshire, produced in 1850, this has 18 names listed for Upton. The last directory of this type used, the 1923 Kelly directory of Cheshire, has 114 names listed.

The 1938 Kelly directory of Liverpool is a little different as it is arrange by streets and includes most occupied buildings, it has a total of 1,062 names listed for Upton.

Telephone Directories

In the early days of the telephone, only large businesses and the rich could afford them, the 1896 telephone directory has just four entries for Upton:

De Wolf, W The Salacres 2402
Grainger, Val Church Road 2408
Hannay, T S Greenbank 2401
Robinson, H J Upton Manor 2403

The 1930 telephone directory has 178 entries for Upton.


The first official census of England and Wales was on 10 March 1801, Since then there has been a census every ten years except for 1941, during the Second World War. Before 1841 the census was the responsibility of the overseers of the poor and the clergy and most of the records have been lost.

The main database contains details of heads of households and lodgers only from the censuses taken between 1841 and 1911. The 1841 census lists 46 households/lodgers in Upton, while the 1911 census has 241 entries. A secondary database will provide full details of households.

1939 Register

The 1939 Register was designed to capture the details of every member of the civilian population on 29th September 1939. The information was used to issue identity cards and ration books, it was also used to administer conscription and the direction of labour, and to monitor the movement of the population.

While the 1939 Register is not a census, it is arranged along similar lines and contains much of the same information, in addition it shows exact dates of birth (census returns only give a person’s age).

The Register was continually updated while National Registration was in force, when it was a legal requirement to notify the registration authorities of any change of name or address. This ended in 1952, but since 1948 the Register had also been used by the National Health Service, who continued updating the records until 1991

Electoral Registers

The electoral registers are lists of people entitled to vote in the polling districts in which they are listed and are the sole evidence of that right to vote. The first electoral register was intoduced in 1832 and, in general, they have been produced every year since then. The data contained in the registers is collected on the qualifying date, which is usually during the year before the date of the register. So, for example, the 1927 electoral register contains information collected on 15th July 1926.

Prior to 1918, voters were listed alphabetically within Franchises:

  • Ownership Electors
  • Occupation Electors (other than lodgers) [Entitled to vote as Parliamentary Electors and County Electors]
  • Occupation Electors (other than lodgers) [Entitled to vote as Parliamentary Electors only]
  • Lodgers
  • Occupation Electors (other than lodgers) [Entitled to vote as County Electors only]
  • Persons entitled to vote as Parochial Electors only

Between 1918 and 1927 the names of voters were arranged alphabetically within Upton, and after 1927 they are arranged by street, and then listed in the order of the houses within the street.

The information in the registers varies. The early registers have limited address information, very often the address is given simply as 'Upton'. The registers only contain people who are entitled to vote in Parliamentary, County or Parochial elections. The requirements for voting were complex:

In 1832, to be able to vote in a parliamentary or county election you had to be a "£10 householder", that is an occupier of property, either as owner or tenant, worth £10 per year, or lodgers if the value of the property occupied divided by the number of lodgers exceeded £10 per year. In all cases the householder had to have been in the possession of the property for twelve months. You also had to be male and over the age of 21.

In the reform act of 1918 qualifications were simplified and extended to all adult (over 21) men resident in the constituency and to all women over 30. The period of residential qualification was reduced from a year to six months, and, as a temporary measure, men aged 19 or 20 serving with the armed services were given the vote.

In 1926 the period of residential qualification was reduced further to three months and in 1928 the voting age for women was reduced to 21 so that the male and female franchise was now the same.

The database contains data from Electoral Registers between 1850 and 1931.

To search the database, click here

Note that this is an ongoing project and data is regularly added to the database, and corrections are made as new information becomes available.

Can You Help?

Do you have any pictures of Upton, or of events in and around Upton either old or not so old?

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