Family History News Archives

The Society of Genealogists calls for the published electoral register to be retained

 

The following response has been sent  in response to the  the Ministry of Justice Proposal for reform of the published electoral register for England and Wales.

 

Kirsten O’Connell

Ministry of Justice

Elections and Democracy Division

Floor 5, 5.18                                           

102 Petty France

London, SW1H 9AJ

Dear Ms O’Connell

Edited Electoral Register Consultation (ref: CP 46/90)

This response is made on behalf of the Trustees and members of the Society of Genealogists, the leading national learned society concerned with family history and genealogy and their associated social science disciplines. It is the largest society of its kind in the UK, with nearly 12,000 members.

The Society campaigns for the integrity and preservation of records relevant to current and future research and optimum access to such records. Members of the Society are all researching family history, mostly as amateur hobbyists, though a significant number are professional researchers. Hence the Society’s main, but by no means exclusive, concern is for access to records and genealogical information on behalf of genealogists who are researching their family history and individual ancestors and relatives. It is not insignificant that within the Society’s archives can found be the correspondence with the Home Office reflecting the Society’s success in making the 1841 and 1851 censuses available for public inspection in 1912. Since its foundation in the previous year, the Society has continued to lobby on behalf of the genealogical community and takes an active role in rescuing documents that are of interest to family historians but which have been discarded by other larger and often public archives. It seeks to influence record holders so that the particular needs of family historians are recognised.

Vision for organisation
The Society of Genealogists seeks to promote a genealogical community in which everyone has convenient, affordable access to records, finding aids, knowledge and skills necessary to conduct authoritative research in family history.

Comments on the consultation

Genealogy is an ever increasing activity. Millions subscribe to online databases of genealogical information and post their own family information online. A huge number wish to find living relatives, inspired by popular television programmes such as Heir Hunters of Who Do You Think You Are?

 Also, often when searching for these relatives, a name is all genealogists have. This is what makes the current edited Electoral Roll even more valuable because it allows a search to be made without knowing a location, unlike directory enquiries. Plus one can search by the full name of any adult living in a household, again unlike directory enquiries. There will be no substitute database if the edited Electoral Roll is taken away.

As the edited Electoral Register is so important to tracing living relatives and the preservation of documents is so essential to genealogists, we do not support any moves that would stop the collation of the edited Electoral Roll and remove this useful service from our users. Therefore, we are strongly in favour of retaining the edited Electoral Register in its current form.

Family historians are well aware of the balance to be struck between the desire to know about one’s family and respect for a person’s privacy. Hence most family historians comply with the advice given by The Society of Genealogists that they do not publish personal information about living individuals without permission.

The current edited electoral register is integral to for search for family members and is not abused by genealogists. Hence we feel that the register should be retained in its current form in line with option 6 of the consultation – that there should be improved guidance for the public about the Edited Register so those who wish can  be made aware that they may opt out as required and give an opportunity for that information to be removed or corrected.

Else Churchill

Genealogist, The Society of Genealogists

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London Principal Probate Office Closed 19th & 22nd February

 

Please be advised that if you are planning to visit the London Probate Department located at:
 
PRFD, First Avenue House
42-49 High Holborn
Ground Floor
Holborn London
England
WC1V 6NP

The Probate Office will be moving from the ground floor to the 7th floor between 19 February and 22nd February 2010. To facilitate the move the office will be closed on Friday 19 February and Monday 22 February.
 
The London Probate Registry is open to the public from Monday to Friday between 10.00am and 4.30pm and appointments for interview at London are arranged between Monday and Friday between the hours of 10.00am and 3.50pm, depending on demand.

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Join the Society of Genealogists at Who Do You Think You Are? Live stand 1025

Special Show Offer. £10 off Membership Subscriptions!!

The Society will be waiving its joining administration fee (usually £10) for anyone who wants to become a member of the SoG at the Society of Genealogists Family HistoryShow which is an integral part of Who Do You Think You Are? Live at Olympia February 26-28 2010. 

This means your first year’s UK subscription will be £45 instead of the usual £55 (£27 for overseas members instead of £37). In addition we are including a free 2G SoG usb memory stick as a welcome present to all our new members – perfect for downloading or backing up your family history files. Hurry while stocks last.

Come and see the SoG at stand 1025 where you can fill out the membership application form and meet our staff and volunteers.

Society of Genealogists at Who Do You Think You Are? Live 2009

Society of Genealogists at Who Do You Think You Are? Live 2009

Infomation about membership benefits can be found on the Society of Genealogists Website

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Countdown to the Society of Genealogists Centenary in 2011

 

The Society of Genealogists will be 100 years old in 2011 and we intend to celebrate our anniversary in style.  There will be different activities to commemorate the occasion and we hope all our members and friends will join us in our celebrations.

 

Details of all our commemorative events planned for 2011 will be posted on our website and in the Genealogists’ Magazine. Here are the first two events to note in your diary

The Society of Genealogists Centenary Conference will take place on
Saturday 7 May 2011
Venue: Royal Overseas League,
Over-Seas House,
Park Place
5 St James’s Terrace,
London SW1A 1LP

Royal Overseal League, London SW1

Royal Overseas League, London SW1

This will be an all day event culminating in a Conference Banquet in the evening.  More details including lecture streams, prices etc will follow but this is definitely a date to book in your diary.

Society Centenary Celebration Dinner
Friday 6 May 2011
Venue: Royal Overseas League, London
This will be a high profile dinner to formally celebrate the Society’s 100th Anniversary.  Spaces will be limited, ticketing information and pricing will be available soon.

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SoG Family History Show Workshops Programme for Who Do You Think You Are? Live 2010 now available

The Society of Genealogists Family History Show workshop programme  at Who Do You Think You Are ?Live 2010 has now been published on the Show website

The workshop timetables show when the Society of Genealogists experts, local societies and exhibitors will be speaking. There are talks for every level of interest in family history.

Tickets are free at the show but some advance boookings are avalable from the show website at £2 each.

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