Swansea Corporation Records

Scope and Content

Swansea Borough charters, 1234-1836; Common hall books and council minute books, 1547-1852; financial and estate records, 1530-1857, comprising of Common Attorney's account books 1617-1762; estate rentals and account books 1802-1857; Borough and church lease book 1530-1787; leases 1737/8-1835; vouchers 1764-1824; church and poor law records 1558-1836, including account books and rate books 1558-1842; Poor house minute book 1788-1793; House of Industry vouchers 1821-1836; settlement certificates and bonds 1636-1719, and apprenticeship indentures 1625-1709. Also paving and lighting records 1809-1850; Swansea Grammar School education records, 1813-1894; the Town Clerk's office papers, 1804-1902, include papers relating to Parliamentary and local elections railways, 1804-1902; the Guildhall papers, 1825-1847; other Town Clerk's office papers, 1825-1858; and collected manuscripts and transcripts, 1545-1832

Administrative / Biographical History

The ancient borough of Swansea consisted of Burgesses. The aldermen were a self-appointing body, one of whom would be the Portreeve, elected annually at Michaelmas. The two Common Attorneys attended the Portreeve on public occasions and managed corporation finances. There were four Haywards, whose job it was to prevent trespassers on corporation lands on the Burrows (the seashore and sandbanks) and the upland areas around Townhill. There was a Learkeeper to oversee the passage of ships and their cargoes through the harbour, a Crier to announce important events in the town, and six Constables to keep the peace. In September 1835, Swansea's old corporation was replaced by a new municipal corporation. This collection includes the earliest records of Swansea Corporation, including its extant medieval charters and its earliest minute books.


Arranged into the following groups :Swansea Borough charters; Common hall books and council minute books; Financial and estate records; Church and poor law records; Paving and Lighting records; Education records; Town Clerk's office papers; Collected manuscripts and transcripts

Access Information

No restrictions

Other Finding Aids

A hard copy is available at the West Glamorgan Archive Service

Conditions Governing Use

Usual copyright regulations apply.

Appraisal Information

All records received by the West Glamorgan Archive Service have been retained

Custodial History

These records were formerly held at Swansea University Archives and transferred to the West Glamorgan Archive Service in 2000.


Accruals are not expected.

Related Material

Other records relating to Swansea Borough are at West Glamorgan Archive Service, reference B/S and TC.