Here's one of the great resources for English family history research that seems to be not as well known as it should be. It's not totally new, but because it gets overlooked, I'll briefly profile it again.
Can't find the ancestors' record in the home parish, then look in adjacent ones. In which Poor Law Union, where your needy ancestors might find help, was the ancestor's parish? Experienced family historians know that maps can be a best friend and help sort out confusing situations.
Try it at http://maps.familysearch.org/. You'll like it.