During the Middle Ages the residents of a village paid a tenth of all their produce to the Church - the word 'tithe' means a tenth.
During the Industrial Revolution in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, with the development of factories in towns, a 'tenth of all produce' no longer meant just crops and animal produce, but also industrial wares, and the system became increasingly difficult to implement. Consequently, under the Tithe Commutation Act (1836), 'produce' was altered to money or 'rent charge payments', the amount being based on the value of the land.
Surveyors, known as Tithe Commissioners, were employed to map the parish and determine values. This was known as commuting the tithes.
Main groups of documents include:
Coverage: 1837 - 1851
Series of maps covering a single (or part of a single) parish with reference numbers marked on each plot, each number matching entries in the accompanying apportionment.
Coverage: 1837 - 1851
Series of volumes, each of which accompanies a tithe map. The reference numbers on the map relate to entries in the apportionment. Each entry records the owner of the piece of land, the occupier (who may be a different person), a description of the land, state of cultivation, acreage and the monetary rental that is owed. The level of detail varies between apportionments.
How to find the document you want
Tithe maps are arranged by parish. There is a catalogue in the archives search room listing parishes alphabetically and detailing the tithe maps and apportionments we hold.
Due to a long term conservation project some tithe maps and awards may be unavailable for a certain number of weeks. Please contact us for further information.
Not every parish in the county received a tithe map as some parishes commuted their tithes at parliamentary enclosure. Nottinghamshire Archives holds those maps which were originally sent to the Diocesan registrar and some copies which were kept by individual parishes. The copies of the maps kept by the Tithe Commissioners are held at The National Archives. There are about 120 parishes covered by tithe maps at the Nottinghamshire Archives.
Download our leaflet on Maps and Plans [PDF 321KB]