Are you planning a visit to London in 2020 to research your family history?
If you have family roots in London, Middlesex or Surrey I can help before you arrive. I can establish whether records of interest survive and their location. If you wish, I can look at your research aims and available time and suggest a feasible plan. I can ensure your precious time isn't wasted by travelling to the wrong archive in search of a particular source, arriving at an archive only to find it is closed, or by failing to take the correct ID to allow you to view original material or not advance booking a reading room space or an off-site document.
Alternatively I can assist by carrying out preliminary archive research in advance of your visit so that you can make good progress when you arrive. Receiving background documents and copies of contemporary maps prior to the visit means there is time to absorb the information before arrival and to refer back to your earlier findings if you spot a name that you're sure you've come across before. Preliminary searches can save valuable time and ensure that once in the UK you can concentrate your archive research on those sources which are likely to produce a result.
Please e-mail for a free initial assessment , if possible well before your trip, so that any planning or pre-visit searches can be completed before you arrive.
If you've returned from visiting London to research your family history, but didn't achieve as much as you expected, then I can complete your research at record offices and tie up loose ends. If you have found your family, I may be able to find more information including additional parish register entries, wills, obituaries, gravestone inscriptions, newspaper reports, maps, archive photographs of relevant locations and much more, depending on your own discoveries.
All enquiries welcome.
CHARGES - Paypal payments accepted
Pre-visit initial assessment of one piece of research you would
like me to undertake before you arrive: FREE
I provide a realistic assessment of the feasibility of your
requirements plus a quote.
Post-visit brief initial assessment of a difficulty or loose end: FREE
(Please send details in an e-mail, providing any information you feel is relevant, accompanied by no more than 3 attachments. I regret that I cannot provide a free initial assessment if I'm asked to visit a website to locate information from your family tree.)
Pre-visit planning, up to 3 hours: £95.00
Advice on: relevant records and their whereabouts; opening hours, specific requirements and locations of relevant record offices; pre-booking of a space and appropriate equipment if applicable; other sources which might be helpful; itinerary planning and provision of a suggested schedule. Potentially you could waste £95.00 and a couple of days of your visit travelling to record offices which don't hold the sources you need. Please don't leave it to the last minute to contact me.
Pre-visit searching, per hour: £34.00/£37.00
Follow-up advice, per hour: £34.00/£37.00
Follow-up searching, per hour: £34.00/£37.00
Individual assistance at a London record office: 4 hours' on-site assistance = £230.00
“Thank you Patricia very much. Your help was invaluable and I enjoyed the visit to Kew very much. Unfortunately we did not get back to Kew as I had to return home unexpectedly. I did remember to phone the reading room first thing, about the documents in our lockers!!
The documents found [relating to a specific individual] were very interesting and made the whole visit special.
I am intending to return in January and hope you might be available for another 1/2 day during that month - as soon as I have dates I will be in contact and see if you can assist.
I learnt a lot and am grateful to you for sharing your knowledge and techniques.
I will also keep the records you made of our searches as a plan for the next visit.” JS, Sheffield, UK (Oct 2015)
Feedback (reproduced with clients' kind permission):
“Your sound advice regarding contacting J....... worked! I wrote to her care of her previous property and asked the occupier to forward it if she was no longer there. Her sister-in-law lives nearby and forwarded the letter to her. She now runs a B & B. She has various family portraits and some photos. As some of us were thinking about visiting the area after the family reunion in Devon, we are going to stay at their B & B if they can accommodate us, or nearby instead. So thanks for steering me in the right direction." LE, NSW, Australia (Mar 2013)
"We met J...... and her husband and stayed at their B & B. It was a lovely old house. The part we stayed in was Tudor, with suitably sloping floors. They were kindness itself and made us very welcome. On the second day J…… put a pile of papers and photos on the dining table and let us look through them and photograph anything we wanted. There were lots of documents and a wonderful memoir written by one of the family members about her childhood. There were also some photos. Best of all were some framed paintings on the walls." LE & sister, NSW, Australia (Jun 2013)
USEFUL LINKS FOR VISITORS TO LONDON:
Walk London's self-guided Westminster walk
City Walks' self-guided Westminster walk (with detailed map)
Guided walk: Secret
National Gallery, Trafalgar Square - free admission, good for a rainy day
What's on in the City of London
City of London churches - index, locations, opening hours:
Museums and Attractions
2 for 1 admissions to London attractions when you travel by train (it's only necessary to buy a rail ticket to travel one stop: Oyster cards are not valid for this offer - see Terms & Conditions and list of rail tickets which qualify for offer) and you must print the 2 for 1 admission voucher and take it with you on the day of your visit (screenshots not accepted).
"Totally Thames" festival - Sept 2020
GETTING AROUND LONDON:
(Travelcards, journey planner, tube map, timetables, bus routes and cycle hire)
(unlimited travel with River Roamer, see Terms & Conditions)
UNIVERSITY ACCOMMODATION AVAILABLE DURING VACATIONS
Many universities let out their halls of residence rooms during Easter and summer vacations. If you want to visit the London record offices to conduct your own family history research, but don't want to stay in a central London hotel, then overnight accommodation at a London university may be an option at certain times of year. Some accommodation is room only; some universities offer b&b. Check availability at:
Remember to check the location on a map, to ensure it's suited to your travel plans. If you require car parking, check whether this is available.
Double check whether the accommodation being offered is located on the main campus (with other facilities available) or is an off-site block.
Summer vacation only university bed and breakfast accommodation (with car parking) within easy access of Heathrow Airport at Royal Holloway University of London (Egham campus). Well situated for access to record offices to the west/south west of London (1 hour by public transport or 30-40 minutes by car to National Archives, Kew; Surrey History Centre, Woking, and Berkshire Record Office, Reading); central London record offices accessible from Egham railway station. Ensure the room offered is on the main campus (see map ) and please read accommodation details carefully before making a booking.
For overnight accommodation with good tube links to Westminster Archives and National Archives (Kew), read a review of rooms at Imperial College, London (rooms available during summer vacation).
If your plans include research at British Library, London Metropolitan Archives or Guildhall Library, check availability of university rooms at Greenview Court, Highgate , which are very convenient for the tube into central London.
Or consider staying in a private home, e.g. at Nunhead , close to Nunhead station with trains to City Thameslink (for Guildhall Library), Farringdon (for London Metropolitan Archives), St Pancras (for British Library), London Victoria (for Westminster Archives), or for the National Archives select accommodation close to Kew Gardens or close to train stations at Richmond or Putney.
Best London Underground tube stations for main London record offices:
London Metropolitan Archives - Farringdon or Angel
Guildhall Library - St Paul's or Bank
British Library - St Pancras or King's Cross
Westminster Archives - Westminster or St James's Park
National Archives, Kew - Kew Gardens
Southwark Local History Library - London Bridge or Borough
Best railway stations for main London record offices:
London Metropolitan Archives - Farringdon
Guildhall Library - City Thameslink or Cannon Street
British Library - London St Pancras or King's Cross
Westminster Archives - London Victoria
National Archives - Kew Bridge
Southwark Local History Library - London Bridge