London born and bred, I have been researching my own family history for over 30 years.  I have traced my family back from recent generations in Southwark, Camden and Islington, through 180 years of London history, into Dorset, Wiltshire, Lincolnshire, Norfolk, Suffolk, Surrey, Essex and Middlesex, encountering members of the Church of England, Catholics and Independent Congregationalists along the way.  In doing so, I have discovered branches of my family spread across the world.

Genealogy is a wonderful hobby.  It is absorbing and fascinating, full of surprises and every discovery provides a fresh lead to investigate.  Over the years I have built up a sound knowledge of the records available in the London record offices.   For anyone with ancestors in London, particularly in the 18th and 19th century, the London archives can be a rich source of information and many sources can be overlooked.  Travelling to London record offices can be time-consuming, impractical and expensive and is often not an option for those overseas. 

St Saviour, Southwark
St Saviour, Southwark

A freelance professional genealogist since 2005, I regularly visit major and local record offices in London and also carry out searches in the counties of Surrey, Sussex and Middlesex and the Metropolitan districts formerly in Kent.  I  have considerable experience researching a wide range of records, many of which are listed on subsequent pages.  I have helped numerous clients in the UK and overseas to discover more of their family’s history, find documentary evidence or to break down a brickwall to allow further progress.  Please see client feedback .


Have you come to a standstill or hit a difficulty?  So much more may be waiting to be discovered - please e-mail your enquiry for a free initial assessment

With years of experience of research in many record offices, I can help you discover your family history or add detail to your own research. 



Do you need asssistance with your family history research  in London, Middlesex, Surrey or West Sussex?  I offer a reliable, efficient and individual archive research service.


I visit the London archives every week and can carry out the searches you need at:


  • The National Archives (Kew)
  • London Metropolitan Archives
  • Westminster Archives (City of Westminster Archives, COWA)
  • Westminster Reference Library (performing arts, stage and theatre)
  • Guildhall Library
  • British Library (India Office aka Asia & African Studies Room)
  • British Library (Newspaper Reading Room, Newsroom, formerly Colindale)
  • Camden Archives
  • Islington Local History Centre
  • Southwark Local History Library
  • Kensington Local Studies Library
  • Wandsworth Archives (Battersea Library)
  • Friends' Library (Quakers)
  • Principal Probate Registry (wills after 1858)
  • Croydon Local Studies Library
  • Surrey History Centre
  • West Sussex Record Office
  • Portsmouth History Centre
  • Hampshire Record Office (occasional visits)


Please see client feedback .


Other London record offices and libraries not on the above list by special arrangement: please enquire.


Please e-mail details of your enquiry for a free initial assessment or use the


enquiry form


Please provide in your e-mail (or in an attachment of up to 3 pages) any information you feel is relevant.  I regret that I cannot provide a free initial assessment if I'm asked to visit a website to locate information from your published family tree.

If you prefer, you can send your enquiry by post (for a free initial assessment please provide a return e-mail address or s.a.e.):

Patricia O'Neill, 6 Mansergh Road, Chichester, West Sussex PO19 6YN

I regret that I am unable to respond to enquiries for general information.


I also work with those who have been adopted who wish to trace birth relatives or learn more about their birth family, where enquiries by specialist organizations have failed.  During 2005-06 I worked in parallel with the Salvation Army to successfully reunite 8 siblings, separated as children during the 1930s after the death of their father (this case referred to with client's permission).


I have also assisted several authors, working on topics as diverse as WW2 prisoner of war escape attempts; tracing a 19thC clockmaker working in London (for a county history); WW2 RAF squadron logs and diaries; and researching a family who left London to run a business in a neighbouring county.  In 2012, I produced a handlist of useful resources for the Crime Writers’ Association.  

Coming from overseas to find your roots in England?   I can help you get the most from your visit, use your time efficiently and ensure you visit the correct archive to view the records you need to research your family history.