Croydon, an ancient town and parish, and a municipal and parliamentary borough in Surrey. The parish contains no less than 9901 acres, but has long since been divided into 16 convenient districts. The borough includes, besides Croydon proper, Thornton Heath, Upper Norwood, South Norwood, Addiscombe, Woodside, and Shirley. Its name (formerly Craydene) is usually derived from Croiedune (Norman-French), " chalk hill," but is undoubtedly from the Anglo-Saxon Crogdoene, " crooked valley." The town stands amid beautiful environs on the line of the ancient Ermine Street, and on the modern road from London to Brighton, a few miles to the N of the North Downs, which separate it from Merstham and Reigate. Croydon town is 10 miles S of London. The river Wandle rises in the parish, somewhat towards Waddon, and flows under the lower lying parts of the town. There are several railway stations on the L.B. & S.C.R., and the S.E.R., in the town itself, and several more in other parts of the borough. Croydon used to be on the main Dover line of the S.E.R., but this now passes via Chiselhurst. There is, however, a large traffic from the Reading branch, the old S.E.R. main line through Redhill, and the Caterham Valley branch. The whole of the traffic of the L.B. & S.C.R. passes through Croydon, both from London Bridge and Victoria; the main line to Brighton with its important branches, especially that via Oxted to East Grinstead and Tunbridge" Wells, and the main line to Hastings and Eastbourne, all pass through East Croydon station, while the secondary Brighton line and the main Portsmouth line pass through West Croydon. The latter station is also the junction of the Brighton Company's lines from Wimbledon and Epsom. Besides these through lines there are three termini of local lines from Croydon to London, viz.: -Addiscombe (S.E.R.), and South and West Croydon (L.B. & S.C.R.) Probably there is not so rich a train service in the environs of London, to say which is to place this town practically in the first rank for railway accommodation.
The following is a list of the administrative units in which this place was either wholly or partly included.
|Ecclesiastical parish||Croydon St. John the Baptist|
|Poor Law union||Croydon|
Any dates in this table should be used as a guide only.
Ancestry.co.uk, in association with Surrey History Centre, have images of the Parish Registers for Surrey online.
For general information about Civil Registration (births, marriages and deaths) see the Civil Registration page.
Directories & Gazetteers
We have transcribed the entry for Croydon from the following:
- Samuel Lewis' A Topographical Dictionary of England, 1848 (Croydon (St. John the Baptist))
Land and Property
The Return of Owners of Land in 1873 for Surrey is available to browse.
Online maps of Croydon are available from a number of sites:
- Bing (Current Ordnance Survey maps).
- Google Streetview.
- National Library of Scotland. (Old maps)
- old-maps.co.uk (Old Ordnance Survey maps to buy).
- Streetmap.co.uk (Current Ordnance Survey maps).
- A Vision of Britain through Time. (Old maps)
Newspapers and Periodicals
The British Newspaper Archive have fully searchable digitised copies of the following Surrey papers online:
The Visitation of Surrey, 1662-1668 is available on the Heraldry page.