Folkestone & District
Family History Society

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For ease of viewing the websites mentioned in “Web Watch”, a regular feature of our quarterly journal, the whole article is reproduced below. 

Since websites, their content and their links are prone to frequent change, or even removal, we will only display the articles from the previous four issues of the journal.

Vol 30, No 3:  March 2017

New GRO Indexes -

Births for 1916 are now included.

Ancestry -

They have added London Transport Staff Registers for 1863 to 1931. Other London records include Gamekeepers' Licences, Applications for Membership of the Stock Exchange 1802 to 1924, and Freedom of the City Admissions for 1681 to 1930. Parish registers for Somerset and Jersey have been added.

Find My Past -

FMP have added 486,000 records with images for the Royal Irish Constabulary 1816 to 1922. 12,000 records from Scottish Non-Conformist parish registers have been transcribed. 64,000 Methodist baptisms and marriages have been added for Sheffield and Derbyshire. Monumental Inscriptions for St. Nicholas Chiswick have provided 12,000 transcriptions, together with 21,000 transcriptions from Middlesex War Memorials from 1845 to 1998. Gloucestershire Apprenticeship records for 1595 to 1700 has 20,000 records. For 17,000 Scottish black sheep, try the Prison Registers index 1828 to 1884. Kent parishes Wortham, Stansted, Wouldham, Southfleet, and Leybourne have added 36,000 records. The Irish Petty Sessions Court Registers and Irish Dog Licences are now complete. 40,000 more Dorset Monumental Inscriptions have been added and 175,000 more Warwickshire burials with 201,000 Monumental Inscriptions. Parish and probate records for Leicestershire and Rutland total 2.3 million and BTs for Norfolk 1.2 million. With TNA they have added 485,000 records for Royal Navy Allotment Declarations 1795 to 1852, 41,000 records for early emigrants to America and West Indies 1636 to 1815, and 55,000 records for the Royal African Company 1694 to 1743. The first additions for Roman Catholic parish registers cover Birmingham and Westminster. Electoral registers for Norfolk total over 4.5 milion. 295,000 records have been added to the Anglo-Boer War records. The Worcestershire Probate Index spans 1660 to 1858 with 51,000 records.

The Genealogist -

They have added Police Letter Books for Hampshire, colour Tithe Maps for Northumberland and Middlesex, parish records for Essex, Worcestershire, Norfolk Hampshire and Cumberland, Quarter Session records for Warwickshire, Middlesex, Worcestershire, Shropshire and Surrey, and re-scanned images of the 1891 Census.

Deceased Online –

Highgate Cemetery alphabetical calendars have been added with 166,000 burials. The date shown is the date that the burial was requested, not the actual date of burial.

Family Search -

The LDS have added parish records for Derbyshire, Manchester, Warwickshire and Cornwall, BTs for Cambridgeshire and Devon, Valuation Office books for Ireland, Bristol Non-Conformist records, Scotland Church Records and Kirk Session Records 1658 to 1919, and the contemporary indexes to part of the Irish Registry of Deeds, for which a partial more detailed index is at

Scotland's People -

Images of births for 1916, marriages for 1941 and deaths for 1966 have been opened.

York's Archbishops Registers -

Over 20,000 images of Registers produced by the Archbishops of York 1225 to 1650, with a growing searchable index of names, etc.

1642 Protestation Rolls -

The House of Lords Archives has 3500 returns for various parishes. The link is to a map of the surviving ones. Peter Calver of Lost Cousins has provided a list of them, some in Kent, with a link to the image -

GRO webpage showing all the BMD records that it holds -

Gibraltar Censuses -

Search for free digitised genealogy books to browse or download -

or search for all types of books -

Examples of various certificates and other documents from Guy Etchells -

Oxford Dictionary of Family Names in Britain and Ireland -

Not open access, but data on 45,000 surnames with frequencies and origins.

Advice on how to index records -

And finally, a free infographic timeline created from a Gedcom -

Vol 30, No 2:  December 2016

New GRO Indexes -

The GRO for England & Wales have released their own indexes covering Births for 1837–1915 and Deaths for 1837–1957. They include all forenames, Mother's Maiden Name for all births and Ages for all deaths. But beware – some ages at death of up to 23 months are recorded as 1–23 years, not 0 or 1 year. You will need to register and log in without charge.

Scotland's People -

A new company has won the contract from the Scottish Government to run the site. The good news is that all searches are now free. Charges for images have increased a little.

Ancestry -

Ancestry have added a database called England & Scotland, Select Cemetery Registers, 1800-2014. Very ‘select’ as it includes just a handful of cemeteries, but has Shepway District Council cemeteries – Cheriton Road, Folkestone; Brenzett; Hawkinge; Lydd; New Romney; and Spring Lane.

They have also added Medway Poor Law records for 1836–1937, Seamen's Rolls of Honour for WW1 and WW2 TNA BT339, Parish Registers for Oxfordshire, various Medical, Midwifery and Dentistry records, Army Lists and registers of Deserters and Courts Martial, Dorset Poor Law Apprentices, and Electoral Rolls for Glasgow, Newcastle-upon-Tyne and Norfolk.

Find My Past -

FMP have added records for Aliens and Internees for WW1 and WW2, 1.1m Army Casualty records for WW2 TNA WO417, 1.7m Westminster Poor Law records, 0.2m further burials for Westminster and Greater London, a worldwide British Army census for 1851 with 156,000 records, Monmouthshire workhouse records and electoral rolls, Quaker Annual Records 1813-1918 with obituaries, 25,000 records for Scottish Paternity Decrees 1750–1922, 280,000 Royal Navy Muster Rolls for 1739-1861, 81,000 Royal Navy Reserve records for 1899-1930 from TNA ADM240 and 337, and 185,000 more Royal Navy service and pension records.

Find My Past's old knowledge base is much reduced but Chris Paton has provided this link to the Internet Archive - 

And the Internet Archive now has a word search as well as URL search.

Irish Genealogy -

A major addition is a database with free images of certificates for Births 1864-1915, Marriages 1882-1940 and Deaths 1891-1965. From 1922 this covers the Republic only, but earlier records appear to cover the whole island. Note that certificates of Birth for 1930-1954 are available at the LDS area at TNA, as are most BMD certificates for Northern Ireland for 1922-1959.

A useful map of Irish districts is here -

The Genealogist -

They have uploaded transcriptions of 454,000 records for Nuneaton and North Warwickshire.

Deceased Online –

123,000 records for Bath and North-East Somerset have been added.

Family Search -

Images of Parish Registers for Warwickshire have been added with 1.25m records. Also 0.5m records and images for Oldham, Lancashire cemeteries.

Local BMD Project -

You can now each local site for births using only Mother's Maiden Name.

A tutorial is here -

Government Gazettes -

A guide written by Else Churchill.

Recording old place rooms -

A crowd-sourced project to record names off 6 inch Ordnance Survey maps from around 1900 and add background info.

How to find abandoned villages -

And finally, it was suggested that I recommend a few blogs and newsletters. Some of these can be added to an RSS feed.

Chris Paton's GENES blog -

Claire Santry's Irish Genealogy News -

Dick Eastman's Online Genealogy Newsletter -

Peter Calver's Lost Cousins Newsletter - and click on the Latest Newsletter link at top left.


Vol 30, No 1:  September 2016

Find My Past -

FMP have added 200,000 baptisms and births and 300,000 burials to their Non-Conformist records.

1600 abstracts have been added to the Kent Wills and Probate Index.

RAF Gallantry awards for 1914-19 have been added, 274,000 records.

A further 764,000 records have been added to the Prisoner of War data for 1715 to 1945 and over 2.5m records have been added to their criminal records, both in association with TNA.

They have also added further parish records for London (Westminster), Staffordshire, Northumberland, Surrey, Warwickshire, Wiltshire, Durham and Yorkshire, and MIs for Worcestershire and Middlesex.


Ancestry -

Ancestry have added an index and images for the England & Wales Probate Calendars for 1973 to 1995, only leaving a gap from 1967 to 1972.

For Bexley, Kent they have added Electoral Rolls for 1734 to 1965 and WW1 Registration Cards.

50,000 Merchant Seamen deaths for 1939 to 1953 have been added in association with the National Maritime Museum.

Emigrants in Bondage 1614 to 1775 has details of over 50,000 people transported to America.

They have added various Nursing Registers for 1891 to 1968.

Parish and Prison records have been added for Northamptonshire, Gloucestershire, Somerset and Norfolk.


The Genealogist - 

They have added a new collection of early military records from various sources.

Also parish records for Worcestershire and Norfolk.


Deceased Online –

More records have been added for the Halifax area of Yorkshire, making 200,000.


Family Search -

The index to Sussex parish registers has been expanded to 2m records.


Bletchley Park -

This lists all those believed to have worked in signals intelligence during WW2 at Bletchley Park and other locations.


1841 census occupations -

Images of a book analysing occupations by county and industry.  Beware long URL!


Gravestone Photographic Resource - 

A free database of monumental inscription photos submitted by volunteers including  Elham, Ivychurch, Lydd, Postling, Old Romney and New Romney.


Kent Photo Archive -

20,000 images of Kent, some back to the 19th century.


Edwardian Postcards -

Over 1000 cards scanned with the names linked to records such as censuses.


Existing and lost railways -

Zoom in on our area to see the RH&DR, Hythe branch, Sandgate tramway, cliff lifts and the spur from Folkestone West into the West End.


The problems of digitising records -


And finally, we all make mistakes -


Vol 29, No 4:  June 2016

The National Archives -

TNA recently had a useful blog post on tracing coroner's records, and what you might expect to find in them -

Find My Past -

FMP have added 1.5 million records called London Lives, Culture & Society 1680-1817 including criminal registers, apprentices, inquests and workhouse minutes.

5.4 million parish and other records for Yorkshire have been uploaded.

79,000 new records have been added to the Greater London Burials index, plus 120,000 baptisms and marriages for Dorset, 71,000 Suffolk marriages, 129,000 Middlesex baptisms, and Irish Quaker records.

In association with TNA, they have scanned and indexed over 911,000 Royal Navy and Royal Marines service and pension records 1704 to 1934.

The final 527,000 records have been added to the National School Admission Registers database.

Ancestry -

Ancestry have added BMD records for Army and Navy 1730 to 1960, Consulates 1810 to 1968, and At Sea 1844 to 1890 from TNA.

They have added a database of the Irish Probate indexes 1858 to 1920.

Also non-conformist, militia and workhouse records for Cornwall and parish records for the Sutton Borough of London (Surrey).

The Genealogist -

The Genealogist have added 900,000 transcripts of parish records for Essex and 158,000 baptisms for Worcestershire.

Deceased Online –

They have added 3 cemeteries around Halifax, Yorkshire with more to follow.

Video tutorials on local BMD indexes by Ian Hartas -

Kent Archaeological Society have transcribed information from the PCC wills of numerous people who worked at the Chatham dockyards -

Kent Probate -

Indexes to Kentish PCC Administrations 1559 to 1660 and Probates in the Archdeaconry Court of Canterbury 1630 to 1728.

London's Museum Mile -

13 museums from the British Library to Somerset House.

And finally, a tour around 17 execution sites in London -