Saturday, 16 December 2017

Dunfermline based Carnegie Music Institution Registers join Ancestry

Registers from the Dunfermline based Carnegie Music Institution from 1910-1920 have gone online on Ancestry (

Dunfermline, Fife, Scotland, Carnegie Music Institution Registers, 1910-1920
Source: Carnegie Dunfermline School of Music Student Registers, Fife Library and Archives Services, Fife, Scotland.

Andrew Carnegie was born in Dunfermline, Scotland in 1835 and, although he left for the United States before the age of thirteen, he still remembered his place of birth with a great deal of fondness throughout his life. After making his fortune, he donated the Carnegie library and public swimming baths and set up the Carnegie DunfermlineTrust with an endowment of $2.5 million. Part of the Trust's work in Dunfermline included the establishment of a Music Institution.

What can be found in the records?

For each individual found within the collection, you may be able to find (where available):
  • Name
  • Year and term of attendance
  • Residence
  • Subject


Needing a Christmas present for a family history obsessed love one (or for yourself)?! For my genealogy guide books, visit, whilst details of my research service are at Further content is also published daily on The GENES Blog Facebook page at

Friday, 15 December 2017

Ancestry has updated its terms and privacy statements

Ancestry ( has updated its terms and conditions, and privacy policy.

It has combined the Terms and Conditions for, AncestryDNA, and other Ancestry services into one document, and done similar for its Privacy Statement.

The new details are outlined at


Needing a Christmas present for a family history obsessed love one (or for yourself)?! For my genealogy guide books, visit, whilst details of my research service are at Further content is also published daily on The GENES Blog Facebook page at

FindmyPast updates 1939 English and Welsh National Register database

Latest weekly additions to FindmyPast (

New additions to the 1939 Register

Thanks to the work of the 1939 Register team, we've been able to successfully match and open over 60,000 more records that were previously closed, and they're all available to explore right now. If you have tried unsuccessfully to find a family member in the Register who died after 1991, it may be worth trying another search.  (NB: this is for England and Wales only)

Portsmouth, New Hampshire, Vital Records 1706-1895

Containing over 18,000 records, this collection consists of vital event records for births, marriages, and deaths reported in newspapers and town record transcripts from Portsmouth, New Hampshire. It is important to note that the event in question may not have occurred in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, however. For instance, a death may have happened in New Jersey but was reported in a Portsmouth newspaper like The Oracle of the Day.

Portsmouth, New Hampshire, Expenses of the Poor 1817-1838

Did your Portsmouth ancestors fall on hard times? Search over 1,000 records to discover when they received aid and uncover additional details such as family names and the amounts paid for supplies, as well as what the money went towards (e.g. room and board, clothing, etc.)

Portsmouth, New Hampshire, Newspaper Abstracts 1776-1800

Explore over 10,000 abstracts from the Federal Observer, Freeman's Journal or New Hampshire Gazette, New-Hampshire Mercury, New-Hampshire Spy, Oracle of New Hampshire, and The Oracle of the Day to learn more about your ancestor's life and struggles.

Portsmouth, New Hampshire, Warnings Out 1722-1769

Was your ancestors driven out of town? "Warning out" was a method used in New England to pressure newcomers to settle in a different town or area. A notice or warrant would be issued by a town's Board of Selectmen and served by a local constable. However, the issuing of such a notice did not necessarily mean that the recipient(s) would be forcibly removed from the town.

Jersey Wills 1564-2000

In this index of over 14,000 wills from Jersey in the Channel Islands, you can discover your ancestor's name as well as the year, location, and original text of the document. The records cover the years 1564 to 2000 and have been obtained from theislandwiki website. Additional information about the records can we found on the source's website.

United States Marriages

Over 10,000 new records covering the city of Portsmouth in New Hampshire have been added to our collection of United States Marriage records. These latest additions mark the most recent phase of efforts to create the single largest online collection of U.S. marriage records in history. Covering 360 years of marriages from 1650-2010, when complete this landmark collection will contain at least 100 million records and more than 450 million names from 2,800 counties across America.

Further details are available at


Needing a Christmas present for a family history obsessed love one (or for yourself)?! For my genealogy guide books, visit, whilst details of my research service are at Further content is also published daily on The GENES Blog Facebook page at

Discounted credits offer for Ulster Historical Foundation records

From the Ulster Historical Foundation (

With Christmas approaching we realise many of you may be planning to carry out some research over the holidays and we are delighted to offer this credit bundle.

From now until 22nd December 2017, Pay-Per-View members can receive 48 credits to use to search our databases for just £25! (Over 25% Discount)

To take advantage of this offer just go to:

Also, if you become a Guild Member, you can also take advantage of this offer at the lower price of £18!

More information on becoming a Guild Member can be found here:

(With thanks to Kevin Keenan)


Needing a Christmas present for a family history obsessed love one (or for yourself)?! For my genealogy guide books, visit, whilst details of my research service are at Further content is also published daily on The GENES Blog Facebook page at

Tuesday, 12 December 2017

FindmyPast releases British and Irish Roots collection

The latest releases from FindmyPast (

British & Irish Roots Collection *

Explore this unique resource, handpicked by our in-house experts. Our new British & Irish roots collection brings together more than 95 million records from across a wide variety of records covering the United States and Canada. Each record identifies a British or Irish emigrant who came to North America. For example, Findmypast identified a population register from California that noted that a widow was Scottish and pulled this record into the collection. This new, first-of-its-kind collection gives North American family historians the chance to search for their British and Irish roots all in one place.

The collection includes passenger lists, census records, naturalization applications, and draft registrations, as well as birth, marriage, and death records. The journeys researchers can expect to find include:
  • Anyone leaving the UK or Ireland and emigrating to the US, Canada or the Caribbean
  • Anyone emigrating from Canada or the Caribbean to the US (this covers the large number of British and Irish emigrants who stopped temporarily in Canada and/or the Caribbean)
  • Anyone listed on any US or Canadian record with British or Irish origins, birthplace or parents

* These records are currently free to access at

British Army, Imperial War Museum Bond of Sacrifice 1914-1918

Discover photographs and uncover details of your WW1 military ancestor's service with an index pertaining to more than 18,000 records found on the Imperial War Museum website. Each transcript will reveal your ancestor's rank, regiment, awards, soldier number and death date.

Kent Baptisms

Over 13,000 records have been added to our collection of Kent Baptisms. The new additions cover the parishes of Meopham, Luddesdown, Cobham, Nurstead and Ifield.

Kent Banns

400 new records have been added to our collection of Kent Banns. An ancient legal tradition, banns are an announcement in church of a couple's intention to marry. Banns were read in the parish (or parishes) in which the couple lived on three consecutive Sundays before the wedding and provided an opportunity for the congregation to put forward a reason why the marriage may not lawfully take place.

Kent Marriages

More than 3,000 new records have been added to our collection of Kent parish marriage records.

Kent Burials

Over 10,000 new records covering the parishes of Meopham, Luddesdown, Cobham, Nurstead, Ifield have been added to our collection of Kent Burials.

Kent Wills & Probate Indexes

Over 49,000 new probate index cards have recently been added to our collection of Kent Wills & Probate Indexes 1328-1890. The contains consists of records from seven different ecclesiastical Church of England courts across the county and was compiled from four separate sources: the West Kent Probate index 1750-1890, West Kent Probate Index 1440-1857, Kent Inventories 1571-1842 and Kent Will Abstracts 1328-1691, and includes 14 different types of document.

Further details and links are available at


Needing a Christmas present for a family history obsessed love one (or for yourself)?! For my genealogy guide books, visit, whilst details of my research service are at Further content is also published daily on The GENES Blog Facebook page at

Society of Genealogists reader offer

Some news of a major update from the London based Society of Genealogists (, and a reader offer for all you wonderful followers of The GENES Blog:

The Society of Genealogist has announced its new membership structure and extra elements for the dedicated Members’ area for the website . In addition to the existing digital data from the library collections the website now has an enhanced members’ Learning Zone with online courses, research aids, record guides and tips. This will be added to throughout the year with online beginners and intermediate level courses to follow shorty. Additionally the rather antiquated Rootsweb SoG members email service has been replaced with a dedicated themed members’ community hub for further education matters and members discussion, help and advice.

The membership fee has been restructured with new rates to create a dedicated associate online only (£56) membership and full membership (£80). Details are available on the SoG website at

Existing members and overseas members can be assured they will not see any change to status, voting rights or large increase in subs though we expect some overseas members in due course to become associate members.

Readers of The GENES Blog can receive a 25% discount on full or associate membership by using the code BG25 upon signing up. This offer will expires on 28 Feb 2018.

Don't say we're not good to ye now! :)

(With thanks to Else Churchill)


Needing a Christmas present for a family history obsessed love one (or for yourself)?! For my genealogy guide books, visit, whilst details of my research service are at Further content is also published daily on The GENES Blog Facebook page at

Monday, 11 December 2017

Mayflower 400 celebrations economic potential

There's a big US/UK aniversary coming up in 2020, which the genealogical community in England may be interested in:

New research commissioned by MAYFLOWER 400 reveals STRONG economic potential PRESENTED BY anniversary IN 2020

Survey highlights:
· Respondents identified as ‘Hot Prospects to visit in 2020’ equates to over 13.75 million US citizens
· Nearly 5,000 US adult citizens and members of New England Historic Genealogical Society and General Society of Mayflower Descendants surveyed
· US general panel favoured independent travel while nearly as many society member respondents preferred a package holiday
· 90% of Hot Prospects interested in attending historical talks and lectures as part of their Mayflower trip

Monday 11th December 2017, London: On behalf of Mayflower 400, the official national and international visitor programme formed to lead the 400th anniversary commemorations in 2020, Destination Plymouth has commissioned research in the United States by specialist research agency, Habit5, to evaluate the commercial and investment potential of this iconic anniversary.

Of over 25 million descendants worldwide from the 102 passengers and crew on board the Mayflower ship, over 10 million are US citizens. It is estimated the national Mayflower programme will drive growth in the UK visitor economy of over 1.4 million visitors during the commemoration year with an economic impact in excess of £76 million in turn creating around 2,000 jobs. This research was therefore commissioned as a benchmark study to be shared with stakeholders and businesses in England and the Netherlands to engage them to capitalise on incremental inbound tourist visits from the US associated with, or inspired by, Mayflower 400 and maximise opportunities the anniversary will generate during this crucial countdown period to 2020.

The aim of Habit5’s study was to determine the potential visitor market size and profile of visitors, and motivations for visits during, and as a result of, the Mayflower anniversary. Furthermore, the study sought to understand current awareness of the 400th anniversary, as well as provide insights on the appropriate messaging to target US visitors, establish the US market’s propensity to visit England and/or the Netherlands for the Mayflower 400th commemorations and, if so, explore the respondents’ intended length of stay and type of travel.

Habit5 logged 4,865 completed surveys by a US general panel which consisted of US adult citizens who have lived in the US for at least 12 months and taken an international holiday within the past three years, and the society members panel which consisted of members of the New England Historic Genealogical Society and General Society of Mayflower Descendants.

The survey found that over half of all respondents had visited England in the past for leisure purposes highlighting the destination’s need to diversify tourism products and offer new attractions and experiences, beyond the obvious highlights of a first time visit, to entice US travellers to return for the commemorations.

Surprisingly, 80% of respondents in the US general panel were not aware of the forthcoming 400th Mayflower anniversary, however, following the anniversary being highlighted to respondents during the survey, 12% of the US panel population were ‘Very Likely’ Hot Prospects to visit England in 2020 with a further 36% classified as ‘Likely’ Warm Prospects. As a result, of the three sample groups surveyed, those identified as Hot Prospects to visit in 2020 equated to over 13.75 million US citizens. These results indicate an element of education around the anniversary should therefore be factored in by destinations and the trade when developing and marketing Mayflower 400 tourism products.

In terms of where they would like to visit, half of the Hot Prospects indicated they would wish to make a specific visit to Plymouth, Leiden, Boston and Southampton. Meanwhile, Plymouth ranked second after London for locations where the Hot Prospects would like to stay during the commemorations, followed by Leiden, Amsterdam, Boston and Southampton.

Some interesting differences emerged between the two panel groups; nearly half of the respondents on the US general panel would plan to travel independently to England in 2020 while nearly as many society member respondents would favour a package holiday. Furthermore, when it came to the length of stay, nearly half of the predominantly full time employed US general panel sample would plan a 4-7 night stay, whereas the society members (the majority of whom are retired) would favour an 8-10 night stay reflecting their commitment to experiencing a more immersive Mayflower holiday experience.

Over 90% of respondents in each segment were interested in attending historical talks or lectures while ‘historical group websites’ were a strongly favoured source of information, followed by tourism board websites and TripAdvisor. Furthermore 70% of Hot Prospects indicated an interest in itineraries that included some elements of walking on their trip.

Amanda Lumley, Executive Director of Destination Plymouth said, “The research evidences the significant potential the Mayflower 400th anniversary presents to the UKs visitor economy. We encourage the travel trade in the UK, US and Dutch markets to capitalise on this opportunity in order to generate valuable tourism business through driving visitors to follow in the footsteps of the pilgrims and experience the Mayflower 400 compact partner destinations first hand”.

For more information on the Mayflower 400 programme please visit:


Note to editors:

2020 marks the 400th anniversary of the Mayflower voyage, one of the most influential journeys in global history and a defining moment in the shared history of Britain, the US, the Native American Nation and the Netherlands.

The anniversary provides a special opportunity to inspire people across our nations with the stories of that iconic voyage, exploring themes of migration, tolerance, freedom and democracy that have such contemporary relevance.

An exciting national and international programme, the Mayflower 400 commemorations will highlight the significance of the special relationship between our nations; transform communities, provide cultural, business and visitor links; explore the different sides of the story; and celebrate the people and places of this epic pioneering tale.

The 11 UK Mayflower 400 Compact partner destinations within the Mayflower 400 programme are:
· Austerfield, Doncaster
· Boston, Lincolnshire
· Dartmouth, Devon
· Gainsborough, Lincolnshire
· Harwich, Essex
· Immingham, Lincolnshire
· Plymouth, Devon
· Scrooby & Babworth, Nottinghamshire
· Southwark, London
· Southampton, Hampshire
· Worcestershire

For further press information and images please contact:
Daniela Resenterra / Josie Self / Annabel Jenkins
020 7593 1771 / 1758 / 1770 / /


Needing a Christmas present for a family history obsessed love one (or for yourself)?! For my genealogy guide books, visit, whilst details of my research service are at Further content is also published daily on The GENES Blog Facebook page at

Friday, 8 December 2017

Latest updates to the Irish Newspaper Archive

From the Irish Newspaper Archive (

The world's oldest and largest Irish Newspaper Archives continues to grow. We have updated the archive with the following new content:
  • The Belfast Newsletter 1939 - 1949
  • The Drogheda Independent 1884 - 1891 + 1905
  • The Dundalk Democrat 2000 - 2001

The weather is changing and its getting cooler outside there could not be a better time to hide yourself away this weekend and make new discoveries with our new content. Enjoy 25% off our annual and monthly membership rates with coupon code: New002

Learn more on the origins of the newspapers below:

The Drogheda Independent Archive
The Drogheda Independent was established in 1884 and offers over 133 years of Irish history. The Drogheda Independent was closely linked with the Land League movement and identified itself with the plight of the small farmer.

The Belfast Newsletter Archive
The Belfast Newsletter was the first newspaper published in Belfast [and in Ulster] and the oldest surviving newspaper in Ireland. The Belfast Newsletter was established over 250 years ago in 1738 by Mr. Francis Joy. The original title was The Belfast Newsletter and General Advertiser, its first issue was in a single sheet-form.

The Dundalk Democrat Archive
The Dundalk Democrat was established in 1849 by Mr. Joseph A. Cartan. The paper was originally produced from a hotel owned by the Cartan family. Cartan was a staunch nationalist and pro- O’Connell supporter.

Coupon Code: New002 - 25% off Yearly and Monthly Membership.

(With thanks to Andrew Martin)


Needing a Christmas present for a family history obsessed love one (or for yourself)?! For my genealogy guide books, visit, whilst details of my research service are at Further content is also published daily on The GENES Blog Facebook page at

Thursday, 7 December 2017

Archive accreditation workshop at PRONI

From the Public Record Office of Northern Ireland (

UK Archive Service Accreditation – Free Information Seminar & Policy Writing Workshop

Public Record Office of Northern Ireland (PRONI)
Friday 8th December
1.30pm – 16.00

Do you work in an archive or an organisation which holds archive material?

Archive Service Accreditation is the UK management standard for archives, supported by a partnership of archives and professional bodies. This free half-day seminar will be a chance to find out more about the programme, its structure and content, and how to make an application. You will also find out how Accreditation can be used to support archive services even if they are not currently expecting to make an application.

The session will conclude with a participatory workshop drafting a management policy for a small archive service, which will show how clear policies can support effective working – and take the fear out of policy-writing!

13:30 Registration and introductions
13:45 Introduction to Archive Service Accreditation: the programme, the standard and how to apply
14:45 Comfort break
15:00 Policy writing workshop: 45 minutes to write a policy for a small archive service, which meets at least 6 Accreditation requirements
15:45 Questions and wrap up

To book a place, visit Eventbrite

(With thanks to PRONI)


Needing a Christmas present for a family history obsessed love one (or for yourself)?! For my genealogy guide books, visit, whilst details of my research service are at Further content is also published daily on The GENES Blog Facebook page at

TheGenealogist adds 1930s UK outbound passenger lists

From TheGenealogist (

Press Release: New BT27 Passenger Lists go online for the 1930s decade

TheGenealogist has just released over 2.7 million BT27 records for the 1930s. These Outbound Passenger Lists are part of an expanding immigration and emigration record set on TheGenealogist that feature the historical records of passengers who sailed out of United Kingdom ports in the years between 1930 and 1939. With the release of this decade of records, the already strong Immigration, Emigration, Naturalisation and passenger list resources on TheGenealogist have been expanded again.

The fully searchable BT27 records from The National Archives released today will allow researchers to:
  • Discover potential family members travelling together using TheGenealogist’s SmartSearch. This unique system is able to recognise family members together on the same voyage. In this situation it will display a family icon which allows you to view the entire family with one click.
  • Find people travelling to America, Canada, India, New Zealand, Australia and elsewhere in the Passenger lists of people departing by sea from the United Kingdom.
  • View images of the original passenger list documents that had been kept by the Board of Trade's Commercial and Statistical Department and its successors.
  • Discover the ages, last address and where the passenger intended to make their permanent residence.

These fully indexed records allow family historians to search by name, year, country of departure, country of arrival, port of embarkation and port of destination.

Those with ancestors who sailed from Britain in the 1930’s will welcome this fascinating new release from TheGenealogist, which adds to their current Emigration records, now totalling over 19 million and dating back to 1896.

See our article:

(With thanks to Nick Thorne)


Needing a Christmas present for a family history obsessed love one (or for yourself)?! For my genealogy guide books, visit, whilst details of my research service are at Further content is also published daily on The GENES Blog Facebook page at

Monday, 4 December 2017

Yorkshire and American records additions to FindmyPast

The following are the latest releases on FindmyPast (

Yorkshire Memorial Inscriptions
Our Yorkshire Memorial Inscriptions have been supplemented with over 13,000 additional records from Rotherham Family History Society.

Yorkshire Burials
We've added even more Yorkshire records this week in the shape of new additions to our collection of burials from 'God's Own Country'. These latest releases consist of Methodist burials from Brunswick Chapel, South Street and Carver Street in Sheffield.

Massachusetts, Boston Crew Lists, 1917-1943
This exciting new collection will help you to find out if your ancestor worked aboard a ship arriving into Boston. Included are transcripts as well as original images that can reveal your seafaring relative's occupation on board, physical description and in some cases, even their signature. Brought onto the site via the original holdings at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), this unique resource is a welcome addition to our existing Boston collection.

Massachusetts Deaths, 1969-2010
Another new addition to our Massachusetts records, this collection of death records details those who died in the Bay State over the past half a century.

United States Obituary Notices
This vast resource of over 6 million records has been transcribed from the website and could help you unlock unknown details on your ancestor's death in America.

United States Marriages
Our premium collection of US marriage records has grown again with the addition of over 30,000 new records from the states of Kentucky, Maryland and South Carolina. This release also sees the addition of a brand new county to the collection - Somerset County, Maryland.

Further details are at


Needing a Christmas present for a family history obsessed love one (or for yourself)?! For my genealogy guide books, visit, whilst details of my research service are at Further content is also published daily on The GENES Blog Facebook page at

Saturday, 2 December 2017

Latest developments at PRONI in Belfast

Yesterday I attended the quarterly stakeholder meeting at the Public Record Office of Northern Ireland ( It was a cold but beautiful day in Belfast, and
a great ferry crossing from Cairnryan, despite the 4.30am start to get there! It was also a slight odd experience for me as my wife was also heading to Ireland, to Kilkenny, at about the same time, so I had to give her a quick wave from the other end of the island!

The following were some of the items discussed:

i) On cataloguing, the following records are currently being worked on:
  • Belfast Natural Field Club D4614
  • As part of the Londonderry Papers from Mount Stewart, records concerning the Women's Legion, and the fight for suffrage, are being made available via D3099/14.

ii) Acquisition strategy – PRONI's last collection policy was created in 2013, and so the archive is currently working on a follow up, to update some aspects. Amongst the issues it will cover will be the types of records that the archive will accept, the records it won't accept, and discussions on digital accessions, a massively changing and ever increasingly important area.

iii) Annual records release - the next batch of government records to be released under the now 20 year rule will take place in a few weeks, with records mainly from 1992, some of them on political issues from the day, but not all. As usual, there will be an event tying into this in a couple of weeks time at PRONI.

iv) The digitisation of church records was deemed a success this year, and new collections are already being identified for next year. 51 Belfast churches have been identified as on a wish list to work on, for records up to 1900, with some a re-recording of previously poorly filmed microfilm records, but others completely new. They are from a variety of denominations – Church of Ireland, Non-Subcribing Presbyterians, Reformed Presbyterians, Methodists and Baptists. The archive has also contacted some external bodies with holdings to see if they might be willing to participate, including a further 64 Church of Ireland parish churches in County Antrim,, and the Methodist Historical Society of Ireland.

v) PRONI volunteer policy – PRONI is hoping to take on 3 volunteers for a 6 month period to assist with efforts at the archive, for which expenses will be paid. If you are interested, application forms are on the PRONI site at – but get in quick, as December 8th is the closing date!

vi) Strategic vision – PRONI is intending to start work on a new strategic vision document. A key anniversary is coming up for the archive in 2023, which will be the 100th anniversary since the Public Records Act which created the body. The archive will look at various issues, such as the role of digital records, collaboration, and statutory goals. There will be three themes, based on trust, memory and engagement. Since opening at Titanic Quarter, PRONI has evolved dramatically in terms of its popularity, its ambition, its collaborations, and knows that this evolution will continue in the years ahead. As one staff members stated, "The days of us just being a place where you come and look at records are over!"

vii) PRONI is planning to commemorate People's Representation Act 1918 with an event on 6th Feb, and intends to turn its Suffrage resources online into an interactive experience. There will also be an exhibition on the theme of suffrage next year.

viii) Archive accreditation – no Northern Irish institution has yet gone through the process of archive accreditation, and so PRONI hopes to be the one of the first, submitting its application next March 2018. A visitor from the English based National Archives will be at PRONI next Friday 8th December to speak to bodies which might be interested in doing likewise. For more on this, visit

ix) PRONI has just launched a fantastic new exhibition on site, entitled Medieval to the Modern: Reformation, Transformation and Continuity, produced in collaboration with Libraries NI. The exhibition will be at PRONI for another week, will then move onto Belfast Central Library for a month, before travelling around libraries across the Province. I managed to grab a few snaps of the exhibition, and although I was only able to spend a few minutes looking at, it definitely looks worth the effort to make a trip into the archive or the city centre to see it.

Finally, after completing some client work yesterday, I managed to briefly explore some of the new digitised repositories at PRONI yesterday. First, the church records that the archive has digitised are accessible through its on-site catalogue (not from home), and once located, are accessed in the form of full colour PDF documents which must be browsed. For the most part the quality was quite good, although I did notice that there seemed to be quite a bit of compression on the quality, which I presume may present some potential issues with smaller text and handwriting. I'm not sure if a higher resolution version is available to staff if this were to happen (there will clearly be a high quality archive standards digital version for conservation somewhere on site).

Secondly, I spent some time on the one of the computers providing access to GRONI's GENI platform, for civil registration records of births, marriages and deaths. The provision at PRONI (and at GRONI itself) allow you to access records to the present day, unlike the online platform at An emotional find for me considering it was the fourth anniversary of my mother's death a few days ago was a copy of her birth registration, which I had never actually looked at before (Whit?! What kind of genie are you?!). I also discovered for the first time some of the names of my granny's siblings who had not survived infancy. The set up is the same as that you use at home, and you will need your log-in details – do remember to do so, PRONI can't help you if you don't, as they are merely hosting GRONI's system. I can actually envisage a trip to Belfast in the near future just to use this again – the indexes are so detailed that you can achieve a lot before paying a penny, but of course you can also see the original records there for £2.50 each. Note though that even if you access the recent records at PRONI, they will not be available to see on your account when you return home if they are within the closure period, even if you have paid for them.

Overall, another great visit to my favourite archive on Earth, and it was great to catch up with people including Ann Robinson from NIFHS, Stephen Scarth, Tom Gribben, and Gillian Hunt from the Ulster Historical Foundation (pictured right).

A quick word to end with on how to get there from Scotland by ferry if you choose to do so! Right now, Stena is offering a midweek deal for Tuesday to Thursday of a return trip to Belfast for foot passengers from Cairnryan at just £5. If you don't book in advance, it is still possible to get a midweek deal for £10 return. For Fridays to Mondays, the cost goes up for foot passengers to £26 return. See for details. The 7.30am ferry gets you to PRONI or to Belfast city centre for 10am, and you can do a full day's work before heading back home on the 7.30pm ferry, getting in to Cairnryan just before 10pm (and you'll have tme to quickly visit the German market at City Hall - see below!). If taking a car to Cairnryan, parking is £5 for the day. It will never be cheaper, so why not treat yourself to a wee research trip before Christmas?! But if you do, remember that there will be no productions available from December 11th-15th, with access only available to self-service microfilms, the catalogue and digital collections - and do remember your visitor card. Heck, I might even try and get back again before Christmas!

(Thanks to all at the meeting, and to all the wonderful staff at PRONI for another great year's work!)


Needing a Christmas present for a family history obsessed love one (or for yourself)?! For my genealogy guide books, visit, whilst details of my research service are at Further content is also published daily on The GENES Blog Facebook page at