Frequently Asked Questions
How long will the research take?
The one and two surname packages take about 8 weeks to complete once you have returned the research forms. The pedigree package takes about 12 weeks. I will keep you informed by email about every week to ten days with my progress during the process.
What information do you need to start with?
I can often start with very little. For example, I can start by ordering the birth certificate for one of your parents if required. I do prefer to start by ordering the marriage certificate, or preferably birth certificate, of a grandparent if possible, as this will mean I can achieve more with the time and budget available.
What if I want to go back further?
Most families in England, Scotland and Wales are traceable back to the early 1800s. The records to do this have survived well, and if something is missing, the problem can often be worked around. Earlier research takes longer, is less predictable, and can often mean visiting archives or repositories. For this reason, I don't undertake earlier research as part of a package, but I am happy to do it. This sort of research is charged by the hour, which can be added on to one of the packages.
Can you include my own information?
Yes, you are welcome to provide as much information as you can, particularly any photos of your ancestors as these will add greatly to your book.
Can I get extra copies of my book?
Yes, extra copies can be purchased. They make a perfect gift for family members. The price varies depending on the size of the book, a one surname book is usually £30 plus postage and packaging. Please contact me for details. Please note, the electronic files needed to create these books are retained for a minimum of 6 months. After this time, I may not be able to produce further copies.
What size is the Book?
The books are approximately A5 size.
What forms of payment do you accept?
I accept cheque, bank transfer or debit/credit card via PayPal—please contact me for details.
Can I get extra copies of certificates/documents?
Copyright restrictions mean that I cannot reprint certificates and documents for you—I will provide you with the originals. Extra copies of certificates can be obtained from the General Registry Office at their current fee.
My ancestors are not from England, Scotland or Wales can you still research them?
My research experience is in records from England, Scotland and Wales. If your ancestors are from elsewhere you are best contacting a researcher who specialises in records from that country and will be more familiar with the local records, language and culture.
Frequently Asked Questions—Bespoke Research
Can you guarantee to find the answers?
No genealogist can guarantee to find answers. A lot will depend on the survival of records, the information recorded in those records, how much your ancestors moved around, and how common their names were.
I want to research back as far as possible, how much will it cost?
There are too many unknowns to answer this question. The way round it is to commission a number of hours research (I usually recommend about 10), after which point the findings can be reviewed, and continued if possible and desired. It may be necessary to repeat a number of these cycles to get as far back as possible. Alternatively, if your family stayed in a small village for many years, research could proceed quickly. There will be a point where the family are unlikely to be traced back further.