Needham Family

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Distribution

 

Distribution

The Needham's are not a large group. Based on the 2002 census there are 10886 Needham's in England, Wales & Isle of Man making the surname the 698 most popular in England ref 1. This information comes from a database which contains almost 270,000 surnames, shared by 54.4 million people. The entire database contains over a million surnames, shared by 55.9 million people, but names shared by fewer that five people have been excluded from this list.

In fact the UK has the highest density of Needham's world wide ref 2:

Country

FPM

UNITED KINGDOM

188.94

NEW-ZEALAND

131.21

AUSTRALIA

105.24

IRELAND

97.37

CANADA

76.1

In the UK the highest incidence of Needham's is in Sheffield followed by Nottingham then Doncaster ref 2:

City

Sheffield, South Yorkshire
Nottingham, Nottinghamshire
Doncaster, South Yorkshire
Leicester, Leicestershire
Chesterfield, Derbyshire
Leeds, West Yorkshire
Oldham, Lancashire
Liverpool, Lancashire

This should not be a surprise as the Needham's are thought to have originated from North Derbyshire.

1. Growth in Population

From census data the population of Needham's in England and Wales has grown, ref 3:

Census

Frequency of the Surname Needham

1841 Census

214

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1851 Census

1097

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1861 Census

2279

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1871 Census

3302

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1881 Census

4770

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1891 Census

4912

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1901 Census

6883

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1911 Census

8021

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2. Distribution Maps

2.1 Baptism Data

The earliest comprehensive data available comes from parish registers. But care needs to be taken as not all parishes are on line some of the registers are damaged and difficult to read. None the less some idea of the early distribution of Needhams can be gained by looking at baptism data. The earliest data that is reasonably comprehensive is in the period 1600 to 1630. This is about one generation of Needham's. If we look at the distribution by county then Derbyshire and Lincolnshire have the highest number of Needham's outside London:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Area No.
London 112
Derby 81
Lincs 62
Herts 39
Notts 34
Leics 23
Cheshire 14
Staffs 11
Shrop 10
Kent 10
Lancs 5
Northamp 5
Yorks 4
Bedford 3
Warwicks 3
Bucks 3
Oxford 2
Norfolk 2
Rutland 1
Total 424

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If we look at the parishes where the Needhams were born a familiar picture emerges:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Parish Area Number
Hartington Derbyshire
31
Baslow Derbyshire
15
Worksop Nottinghamshire
13
Macclesfield Cheshire
13
Magnus the Martyr London
13
Humberstone Leicestershire
12
Bishopsgate London
11

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The parish with the largest baptisms of Needham's is Hartington which has double the number of the second placed parish, Baslow. These two parishes are adjacent to each other with Hartington being the parish where the Needham's originated at High Needham. Third equal are three parishes in three areas: Worksop in Nottinghamshire, Macclesfield in Cheshire and Magnus the Martyr in London. There are two other parishes which have over 10 baptisms: Humberstone in Leicestershire and Bishopsgate in London.

There are over 400 baptisms from 19 regions/counties. Surprisingly there are a large number of spelling variants within this population;

Neadam
Neadham
Neadom
Nedam
Nedame
Nedeham
Nedham
Nedim
Nedom
Nedum
Needam
Needame
Needham
Needeham
Needem
Needom
Needum
Neeham
Neidham
Neodham
Neydam
Nidam
Nideham
Nidham
Nidhame
Nidim

Although Needham is the largest group the surname varies from Neadam to Nidim, with the largest number of variants being in Lincolnshire

 

 

 

 

 

2.2 Census Data

These maps are based on postal codes. Not surprisingly the areas with the highest incidents of Needham's are in the Stockport postcode (which covers NW Derbyshire), Sheffield and Doncaster.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Needham Distribution 1881 ; ref 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Needham Distribution 1998; ref 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2.2.1 Distribution by County

Detailed analysis is available on the output of the 1881 census; ref 4. Looking at the distribution of counties with the highest number of Needham's they lie in a band running NorthWest SouthEast across the middle of England from Lancashire in the west to Lincolnshire in the east.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There are 10 counties with more than 100 Needham's living there, with the top two counties having over 1000 Needham's in residence. The highest number of Needham's in a county occurs in Lancashire which has nearly 12% more Needham's than second placed Yorkshire and over 35% more than Derbyshire, the country where the Needham's originated.

County

County Popn.

Actual No.

Lancashire

3448165

1273

Yorkshire W.Riding

2175852

1123

Derbyshire

456652

802

Lincolnshire

462960

568

Leicestershire

323089

452

Nottinghamshire

393238

367

Middlesex

2861231

323

Cheshire

640667

295

Staffordshire

983336

158

Kent

968915

125

However, if we look at the density of Needham's in a county, Lancashire and Yorkshire drop to 8th and 6th respectively because they have high populations, while smaller Derbyshire rises one place to second. The county with the highest density is Rutland followed by Derbyshire with Leicestershire third.

County

County Popn.

Actual No.

per 100,000

Rutland

21417

60

280

Derbyshire

456652

802

176

Leicestershire

323089

452

140

Lincolnshire

462960

568

123

Nottinghamshire

393238

367

93

Yorkshire W.Riding

2175852

1123

52

Cheshire

640667

295

46

Lancashire

3448165

1273

37

Flintshire

78829

29

37

Yorkshire E.Riding

312344

84

27

 

 

2.2.2 Distribution by District

 

A similar pattern occurs when the numbers of Needham's in the 1881 census returns are analysed by Districts; ref 4. There are 10 districts with over 100 Needham's.

District Name

Dist. Popn.

Actual No.

Oldham

168495

417

Ecclesall Bierlow

114474

277

Sheffield

183076

242

Chesterfield

98611

233

Bakewell

30552

173

Nottingham

159120

172

Stockport

117161

154

Ashton under Lyne

154572

132

Chorlton

257835

116

Barrow upon Soar

28884

110

Not surprisingly the district distribution follows a similar pattern to that of the counties

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The district with the highest incidence of Needham's is Oldham in Lancashire where there are 417. This is 34% higher than second placed Ecclesall Bierlow and 41% higher than third placed Sheffield both of which are in West Yorkshire. All three of these districts are in large industrial towns with populations of over 100k people. So when you look at density of Needham's Bakewell in Derbyshire is top followed by Oakham in Rutland and Chapel en le Frith which like bakewell is in Derbyshire. All three of these districts have fewer than 31k people living in then. Oldham which has the highest number of Needham's drops to 11 when you look at density, Ecclesall Bierlow is 12th and Sheffield is outside the top 20!

 

District Name

Dist. Popn.

Actual No.

per 100,000

Bakewell

30552

173

566

Oakham

10978

59

537

Chapel en le Frith

19490

94

482

Barrow upon Soar

28884

110

381

Thorne

16051

54

336

East Retford

23275

76

327

Gainsborough

29956

90

300

Spilsby

27906

82

294

Loughborough

27900

80

287

Blaby

21878

55

251

Oldham

168495

417

247

Ecclesall Bierlow

114474

277

242

Chesterfield

98611

233

236

Leek

31219

64

205

 

 

 

2.2.3 Regional Growth Variation

When the first national census was completed in 1841 there were 3501 people registered with Needham as their surname in England. 82% of this number were in the counties of Lancashire, Derbyshire, Yorkshire, Lincolnshire, Nottinghamshire and Leicestershire, with the highest number being in Lancashire. You will notice slight variations in the 1881 figures to those reported earlier. These numbers were taken from a different database but the trends are the same.

England

Population

 

 

County Population Needham's

 

County

Year

Total

Needham

Derby.

York.

Linc.

Cheshire

Lancs.

Notts.

Leic.

Total in 7 counties

% of Total pop. Of Needham's

1841

14772291

3501

564

472

308

184

724

304

299

2855

81.5

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1851

16681328

3988

571

570

416

178

815

300

301

3151

79.0

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1881

24766987

6335

812

1269

578

298

1301

377

456

5091

80.4

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1901

30549773

7489

1011

1538

601

353

1427

478

551

5959

79.6

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1911

33847363

8134

970

1851

628

391

1396

586

547

6369

78.3

 

By comparison in 1841 there are less than 30 Needham's in Norfolk and Suffolk which would imply that the Needham line emanating from Needham in Norfolk had essentially died out or had moved away from East Anglia and that the majority of the ancestors of Needham's in England came from High Needham in Derbyshire.

From 1841 to 1911 the number of Needham's grew in line with the growth in the national population.

Population

Year

England

Needham

%

1841

14772291

3501

0.024

1851

16681328

3988

0.024

1861

18430142

4700

0.026

1871

21396005

5351

0.025

1881

24766987

6335

0.026

1891

27127825

6664

0.025

1901

30549773

7489

0.025

1911

33847363

8134

0.024

 

The county with the greatest growth in Needham's appears to be Yorkshire, which by 1901 was the county with the highest number of Needham's (thank goodness!)

In the 7 counties with the highest number of Needham's, the number of Needham's increased between 1841 and 1911 but interestingly over the same period the proportion of Needham's in the Derbyshire and Sheffield population compared to the total number of Needham's fell. In Derbyshire there was also a trend where Needham's moved from rural villages into the bigger towns in Derbyshire and Cheshire and the industrial cities in Lancashire and Yorkshire.

These trends are not surprising as the working population centred on agriculture fell and people moved into industrial towns and cities looking for work and a better standard in life

 

2.3 Forename

The most common forename is Mary; while John is the most common male name ref 3:

Name

1841 Census

1851 Census

1861 Census

1881 Census

1871 Census

1891 Census

1901 Census

1911 Census

Total

Mary Needham

18

99

207

297

367

339

418

385

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John Needham

13

73

161

244

325

299

396

419

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William Needham

15

71

159

221

268

279

365

389

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George Needham

15

44

106

136

180

179

272

317

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Sarah Needham

12

61

128

163

204

185

198

196

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Thomas Needham

9

42

87

120

172

159

222

212

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Elizabeth Needham

15

54

119

153

177

149

184

181

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James Needham

3

47

74

122

144

153

202

197

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Joseph Needham

7

34

71

95

133

131

149

153

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Charles Needham

3

22

52

75

103

107

124

149

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Annie Needham

0

1

5

44

96

114

177

196

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Alice Needham

2

12

27

46

74

104

139

146

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Ann Needham

8

48

78

80

80

56

55

55

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Henry Needham

2

21

36

55

66

68

81

70

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Emma Needham

3

21

38

59

76

67

82

81

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Jane Needham

3

20

43

61

74

66

70

66

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Ellen Needham

2

13

33

40

79

78

74

72

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Arthur Needham

1

6

18

31

48

67

84

119

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Hannah Needham

7

22

40

55

57

50

64

61

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Robert Needham

7

14

23

45

57

42

55

74

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References

1. Guild of One Name Studies: http://www.taliesin-arlein.net/names/search.php

2. Public Profiler: http://gbnames.publicprofiler.org/Surnames.aspx

3. Your Family History: http://www.your-family-history.com/n/needham-family-history.php

4. Surname Atlas published by Archer Software

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