Tag Archives: findmypast.co.uk

Findmypast.co.uk free access – my world cup warm-up

26 Jun

Could tomorrow be our last chance for free access to Findmypast.co.uk? I wouldn’t dream of making a prediction on the outcome of England’s match tomorrow, but I need to make sure I get the most out of the free 90 minutes.

The last time England played I was on my way back from walking part of the South Downs Way, and by the time I got home I didn’t really have the energy and wasn’t really prepared for my 90 minutes and so most of it was wasted. This time I need to be better prepared, it could be my last chance for another four years!

I have a subscription to the 1911 census (which will soon run out, but that is another issue I need to consider) so I can ignore that. I have been through the indexes for the Chelsea Pensioners British Army Service Records and I don’t think there is anyone there that I need yet, although I could do a bit more searching on some of my surnames and places just in case they turn out to be related in the future.

Although I have access to Ancestry.co.uk there are a few people I haven’t been able to find in their indexes. I might stand a better chance with different set of indexes, it is certain worth a try.

Similarly, whilst Ancestry have GRO birth, marriage and death indexes up to 2005, findmypast has the indexes up to 2006. It is probably worth searching the births, marriages and deaths for that extra year?

Now I am off to have another look around the findmypast website. Which other collections have I forgotten that I should be checking?

  • Passenger lists leaving UK 1890-1960 – were released several years ago now, is there anyone that might be in those lists that I have forgotten? Did any of my relations that left the country (or their descendants) ever come back to visit? On a similar track, I don’t think I have ever checked for passport applications, perhaps now would be a good time to have a look and see what is in that database.
  • Parish Records Collection 1538-2005 – findmypast have a large collection of parish register transcription, formerly on the Family History Online website and provided in association with the Federation of Family History Societies. Who might be lurking in those records? It could be worth looking again as my research has moved on since the closure of Family History Online.
  • Index to death duty registers 1796-1903 – I have never really looked at these death duty registers, so now would be a good time to have a poke around in these records to see what is included in them rather than just looking for my relations.

If you are not already registered then make sure you get along to their website and register by midnight tonight (26th June). You can find full details on their website, and don’t be blinded by the 1911 census and Chelsea Pensioners Records, there are plenty of other record types that could reveal far more interesting details about your family (the divorce indexes are another example).

findmypast.co.uk have moved the goal posts – check the latest instructions for free world cup access

16 Jun

Findmypast.co.uk have changed the conditions for free access to their website during the next England World Cup match on the 18th June 2010. Hopefully this will enable more flexibility for overseas visitors and ensure that everyone gets a shot at free access.

Free access will now be available for 90 minutes (no extra time), but the 90 minutes starts at any time you want between 9am (UK time) on England match day and 9am (UK time) the following day. Full details are available on their website.

Also you need to make sure you are registered with the site before midnight on the 17th June to qualify for free access.

Hopefully this should spread the load on their servers this time around, so that everyone will be able to take advantage of this fantastic offer.

Might as well be watching the football

12 Jun

It all seemed too good to be true, free access to findmypast.co.uk for the duration of the England football match this evening, but obviously I was not the only one who turned off the television and went searching for ancestors.

It is now halfway through the three hours and I have so far managed to download three images from the site. They are part of the service record for Richard GEERING of Lewes, Sussex, who is probably a relation of mine, but I haven’t got as far as the information about his next of kin to enable me to precisely identify him.

It is such a shame, it seems he had quite an interesting military career, being convicted for desertion, then for assault and final discharged for misconduct. It looks like he might have spent more time in prison than with his regiment. If only I could get the rest of his record.

I wondered if it might just be the service records that were overloaded, so I thought I would try an 1841 census search, but with the same result, their website clearly can’t cope with the demand.

I suppose I can’t complain too loud, because I haven’t had to pay for this, but I am sorry to say that findmypast deserve a red card. If we are talking football clichés then I would have to say this was a bit of an own goal.

Findmypast.co.uk gives non-football fans something to look forward to the World Cup for

11 Jun

UPDATE 16/06/2010:  Findmypast.co.uk have changed the instructions for free access, check out their website for latest details, and make sure you are registered before the 18th June.

I am definitely in the non-football camp, sure I would like England to do well, but I won’t be getting excited about the upcoming World Cup. However, findmypast.co.uk have given us non-football fans something to look forward to.

Findmypast.co.uk have today announced that for the duration of the England matches (starting 30 minutes before kick-off) access to their records (except Living Relatives searches and Memorial scrolls) will be free. This means you will be able to access their great collections, including the 1911 census and their growing Chelsea Pensioners British Army Service Records collection.

All you need is to be registered with findmypast to take advantage of this great offer, then book your seat in front of the computer for the first England match on Saturday evening. By my reckoning free access should start at 1900BST and according to the announcement should last for three hours.

Was your ancestor a shareholder in the Great Western Railway?

12 May

Findmypast.co.uk have made available the Great Western Railway Shareholder Index, originally compiled by the Society of Genealogists. According to Findmypast the index doesn’t include every shareholder of the GWR, but amongst the 570,464 records it does include details of around "440,000 shareholders and related parties, such as executors and spouses."

The index was originally created by the Society of Genealogists and has now been linked to "full colour scanned images" of the original ledgers. The ledgers record the transfer of shares by means other than by simple sale.

Many of the records relate to a transfer of shares brought about by the death of a shareholder, so if you are lucky you might find details of the death and probate of the individual, along with the number of shares held and the new owner.

Perhaps not surprisingly it doesn’t look like any of my ancestors were shareholders of the GWR. A quick search of the collection’s index failed to find anyone who was even remotely connected to me, still it was worth checking.

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