Broket Statistics UK - The Broket Archive

UK Broket Statistics

This page presents some statistics about UK Brokets. Don Brockett is working on US statistics. Australasian statistics will be next.

Contents of this page:

1. National figures
2. 1600-49 baptisms
3. 1855-1954
4. Scotland 1600-1999

National figures

In 2001 there were about 900 Brokets out of a UK population of about 58,800,000, which is a ratio of 1:65,333.1 Put briefly:

2001: 900 Brokets out of 58,800,000. A ratio of 1:65,333. Similarly:
1901: 459 Brokets out of 41,600,000. A ratio of 1:90,632.2
1881: 374 Brokets out of 35,000,000. A ratio of 1:93,583.3
1650: 202 Brokets out of 5,700,000. A ratio of 1:28,218.4
14/15th C: 71-106 Brokets out of 2-3,000,000. A ratio of 1:28,218.5

According to these figures Broket numbers were at their peak in the 17th C; by 1881 the Ratio had fallen by 70%—emigration will have played a role. So the estimate of 71-106 for the 14/15th C—predicated on the same Ratio as 1650—is probably too high. Based on a household size of 4, there would therefore have been at the very most 17 households at any point in the 14th C—perhaps as low as 9 in the wake of the Black Death in the mid 14th C—and 50 in the 17th.

Compared to the rest of the UK, figures for Brokets living in Scotland were:

1881: 19%, that’s 59 compared to 315.
1901: 22%, that’s 84 compared to 375.

1600-49 baptisms

A study of all known Broket baptisms and births in Britain 1600-49 enables us to:

  • make comparisons with other known periods, and estimates for less well known periods
  • track most users of the surname in this earliest period of emigration to North America.

Contents of this section:6

1. Overall UK totals
2. Baptisms per decade
3. Areas with more than five baptisms per decade
4. Full lists
5. Sources

1. Overall UK totals

 England and WalesScotlandTotal
Overall UK baptism totals

Figures for Scotland 1600-49 may be less complete than for England and Wales. Parish Registers were not kept so well in Scotland at that time. Between 1600-49 2 Scottish parishes recorded Broket baptisms. But judging from later records there will not have been more than a couple of other Scottish parishes with Brokets 1600-49, adding perhaps a dozen baptisms at the most to raise the above 263 to a maximum total of baptisms in the UK between 1600-49 of 275.

Based on estimates of mortality before the age of 10 of up to 265 per 1000 births 1600-49,7 the above figure of 275 could be reduced by 26.5% to provide an estimate of 202 Brokets alive in Britain c 1650 and about 50 households.

2. UK baptisms/births per decade

compared with:

UK births / baptisms per decade

3. Areas with more than 5 baptisms in any 1 decade 1600-49

County16001610162016301640Total 1600-49
West Lothian–592218

1600-49 baptisms
Hertfordshire was the largest centre 1600-49. These 6 comprised 81% of the total. Note: Southwark is included in London.

4. Full lists of baptisms of Brokets in Britain 1600-49

  1. by year: pdf file to follow.
  2. by first name: pdf file to follow.
  3. by county: pdf file to follow.
  4. by parish: pdf file to follow.
  5. by parent: pdf file to follow.

5. Sources

  1. Contemporary Parish Registers, mainly from the IGI. There is much duplication in the IGI by individual contributions, so entries have all been carefully checked. This is especially the case with Wheathampstead entries, which have therefore only been included in this 1600-49 study if found in one of the next 2 categories.
  2. Other contemporary sources, mainly from the Public Record Office.
  3. Secondary sources.
  4. Unconfirmed sources from the IGI.

These sources are indicated by a 1, 2, 3 or 4 before the abbreviation in the list of Parish Registers (PRs) below, e.g. 1 Du = the Dunton PRs.+Read more


This section provides data of births, marriages and deaths of Brokets in the UK 1855-1954, extracted from the GRO and the Scottish Record Office indexes and organised by:
1. decade
2. area.

Civil registration began 1837 in England and Wales, and 1855 in Scotland. 6.5% of births were said not to have been registered in England 1841-50, falling to 1.8% by 1861-70.9 For greater reliability, figures are given here from 1855.

1. By decade


Broket Births, Marriages and Deaths By DecadeThe figures for Scotland gradually rose throughout the period, while those for England fluctuated without much increase. Although the national population increased by 80% or more during the period, Broket births were less in 1954 than they had been 1855. Death figures are low mainly because they don’t include females who married and changed names. The 2 highest numbers of deaths were during the decades of the 2 world wars.

2. The 10 main areas

1855-1904 (B = Births, M = Marriages, D = Deaths)

1. London+++++++++B 185; M 99; D 92
2. Bedfordshire+++++B 127; M 59; D 75
3. Hertfordshire+++++B 56; M 23; D 27
4. North East+++++++B 55; M 26; D 32
5. Glasgow+++++++++B 42; M 15; D 14
6. Lanarkshire++++++B 40; M 13; D 23
7. Cambridgeshire+++B 21; M 14; D 12
8. Lincolnshire++++++B 19; M 6; D 5
9. Yorkshire++++++++B 12; M 7; D 27
10. Essex++++++++++B 0; M 2; D 3

10 Main Areas 1855-1904


London++++++++++B 206; M 167; D 119
Glasgow+++++++++B 118; M 60; D 65
Bedfordshire++++++B 57; M 38; D 39
Hertfordshire+++++B 37; M 24; D 17
Lincolnshire++++++B 30; M 25; D 18
Lanarkshire++++++B 17; M 10; D 22
Essex+++++++++++B 14; M 18; D 20
North East+++++++B 14; M 17; D 34
Cambridgeshire+++B 3; M 7; D 16
Yorkshire++++++++B 3; M 6; D 6

10 Main Areas 1905-1954

London tops both periods. Bedfordshire was next in the first half but its birth rate dropped by more than half in the second. Conversely Glasgow’s almost trebled in the second half and was double Bedfordshire’s. All other areas decreased except Essex and Lincolnshire. Care should be taken with the smaller numbers—a mere one or two families could explain the increase.

Scotland 1600-1999

During these 400 years there have been less than 600 Broket births in Scotland, more than half of them in the last 100 years.

Table 1 provides data of recorded births/christenings, marriages and deaths in Scotland over the 4 centuries, extracted from the Scottish Record Office indexes and organised by half century:

Note: The lack of data here for deaths before 1855 is because OPR burials have not yet been recorded electronically.

Baptisms and banns were first ordered to be kept in Scotland in 1552, and burials from 1565, but little was done to enforce the orders, nor even a Privy Council Order of 1616, and the quality of the Scottish registers was never as good as in England and Wales.10

The first Brokets in Scottish registers are from Mid Calder in 1609, and for the next 90 years the Mid and West Calder registers provide most of the recorded Brokets. However, registers from 1700-49—by which time they were being kept better—show that Brokets were still only in a few other Scottish parishes, principally the 3 neighbouring ones of Lesmahagow, Carnwath and Crawfordjohn further south in Lanarkshire, and in Edinburgh (Table 2 below). This suggests that the 1600-49 and 1650-99 births in Table 1 only need to be augmented by a dozen at the most to gain a more accurate picture of actual Broket numbers.

Records of Broket births increased considerably in the half century when civil registration began—1855—further suggesting that figures for earlier half centuries could be underestimates. But again the location patterns in Table 2 suggest that this 1850-99 increase could rather simply be a mirror of the national expansion in birth rate at the time. A similar increase can be seen 1900-49, especially in Glasgow, explainable in this case mainly by the expansion of the shipbuilding industry on the Clyde.

Table 2: Broket births (B) and marriages (M) in Scotland by parish. This shows the changes in location of Scottish Brokets 1600-1899:

Mid CalderB 20, M 7M 1
KelsoM 1
LivingstonM 1
West CalderB 12, M 2B 1
GlasgowB 1, M 2B 9, M 1B 8, M 3B 39, M 12
LanarkB 3, M 4M 2B 1, M 1B 6, M 6
EdinburghB 4B 10, M 4M 2B 3, M 1M 3
DouglasB 1B 1, M 2
PettinainM 1M 1
Symington (Ayr)B 2
LesmahagowB 11, M 6B 13, M 1B 4, M 1B 2, M 4
CarnwathB 8, M 3B 3B 7, M 4B 17, M 5
LibbertonB 2, M 1
BathgateM 1
AlloaB 3
Crawford(john)B 7, M 1B 4
W LintonM 1
LinlithgowB 1, M 1S
AbercornB 1
WistonB 2, M 1
CarridenB 1
StewartonB 2
CarstairsB 3, M 3
WandellB 2, M 1
PenicuikB 1B 3, M 3B 6, M 1
CarmichaelM 1B 1
BaronyB 5
GlencorseB 1, M 1
ShottsB 7
ForthB 11, M 3
East/Old KilpatrickB 7
Old Monkland WB 2
HamiltonM 1
WhitburnM 1
Note: Glasgow here includes the parishes of Anderston, Bridgeton, Camlachie, Eastwood, Glasgow Central, Gorbals, Rutherglen, Shettleston, Springburn and West Calton. Edinburgh includes Leith.

Table 3 shows the overwhelming proportion of Glaswegian Brokets among 20th C Scottish Brokets as a whole:

Note: Glasgow here includes the districts of Anderston, Baillieston, Blythswood, Bridgeton, Calton, Camlachie, Cathcart, College, Dennistoun, Garngadill, Glasgow Central, South and North, Gorbals, Govan, Hillhead, Hutchestown, Johnstone, Kelvin, Kelvingrove, Milton, Old and East Kilpatrick, Paisley, Partick, Plantation, Pollock, Port Glasgow, Possilpark, Provan, Rutherglen, Shettleston, Springburn, Townhead, Tradeston and St Rollox.

Page Last Updated: November 8, 2023


For full bibliographical details please see the sections Publications or Glossary.


[1] Electoral rolls; Halbert p 63.

[2] Census.

[3] Census.

[4] Parish records; IGI; mortality, see ... above.

[5] Estimate based on 1650.

[6] Don Brockett has kindly supplied charts to give you an alternative presentation of the data to tables.

[7] Laslett 1983 p 112.

[8] Email from R Madsen 24 June 2002.

[9] Finnegan and Drake 1994 p 66, citing the Registrar General's 35th Annual Report 1875 p 5).

[10] Hey 1996 p 342.

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