CFHS NW Region Conference

Catholic Family History Society

North West Region Conference


Saturday 28th October 2017, 11am


Fulwood Methodist Church

Watling Street Road





On Saturday 28th October, the North West region of the Catholic Family History Society will be hosting a mini conference at Fulwood Methodist Church.


The speakers on the day will be


Peter Park MA FSG, on the topic of ‘Between the lines: what the records don’t tell us’



Lawrence Gregory MA, on the history and development of Catholic school archives, and their uses for genealogists.


Registration on the day will commence at 11am, with lunch at 12.30.

The AGM will be held at 1.45pm

Please contact Diana Henaghan to book a place

0161 483 7372


Heritage Open Days 2017

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Heritage Open Days 2017 will be taking place between the 7th and the 10th September this year.

As usual many Catholic churches are opening their doors giving people the opportunity to explore buildings usually kept locked while not in use. Please consider making use of this opportunity to support these sites.

For more information consult the Heritage Open Days website



Hurst Cross, St Christopher RC Church

Sefton Park, Liverpool St Clare’s RC Church

Liverpool, St Francis Xavier’s RC Church

Old Swan, Liverpool, St Oswald’s RC Church

Wallasey, Ss Peter & Paul’s RC Church (The Dome of Home)

St Helen’s, Holy Cross & St Helen RC Church

Darwen, Sacred Heart & St Edward RC Church

Over Darwen, St Joseph RC Church


Stockport, Our Lady & the Apostles RC Church



County Durham

Old Elvet, St Cuthbert’s RC Church

Old Esh, St Michael’s RC Church


Hull, St Vincent’s RC Church

Hull, St Charles Borromeo RC Church


Old Gate, St Robert of Newminster RC Church

Tyne and Wear

Gateshead, St Patrick’s RC Church

Sunderland, St Ignatius the Martyr RC Church

Wallsend, Our Lady & St Columba RC Church

Blaydon on Tyne, St Mary & St Thomas RC Church




Launceston, St Cuthbert Mayne RC Church


Bath, Eyre Chapel


Calne, St Edmund’s RC Church




Reading, St James RC Church

Reading, Sacred Heart RC Church


Colchester, St James the Less & St Helen’s RC Church


Bishop’s Stortford, St Joseph’s RC Church


Folkstone, St Peter’s RC Church


Effingham, Our Lady of Sorrows RC Church

Effingham, St Teresa’s RC School

Woking, Holy Cross Chapel




Gloucester, St Peter’s RC Church


Newcastle under Lyme, Holy Trinity RC Church

Burslem, St Joseph’s RC Church

Stoke on Trent, Sacred Heart RC Church


Birmingham, St Chad’s Cathedral

Birmingham, The Oratory




Grimsby, St Mary on the Sea RC Church

Family History Fair in Basingstoke

Hampshire Genealogical Society Family History Open Day and Fair

on Sunday 8 October 2017, 10 am to 4 pm

at Everest Community Academy, Oxford Way, BASINGSTOKE RG24 9FP

free entry – free parking – light refreshments – disabled access

three free talks – numerous family history stalls and exhibitors

(the theme of the event will be World War Two – Britain at Home)


What happened to the United Kingdom Great War Service Records?

With the centenary of the Great War in full swing, interest from genealogists in the role played by their ancestors in the conflict has never been higher, and one of the questions I am frequently asked by people is whether I can help them find their ancestors military service record.

Sadly, the answer is often ‘no’, due to the fact that only a percentage of military files from this period are available, and the reason is quite complicated.

Historically, the British Civil Service was renowned for it’s record keeping; files were created and kept on every aspect of administration of the British Empire, and the military was no different, every soldier who served from around 1900, had a personnel file created about them. This file contained their attestation papers, medical reports and records, disciplinary records, conduct reports, as well as miscellanea of other items relevant to the soldier in question.

By 1914, the regular and reserve army in Britain numbered about three quarters of a million men, however by the end of the war, more than seven million were thought to have served.

Following the conclusion of the war, the records were retained in the War Office Records Store, located in Arnside Street, London. The building was however hit by a high explosive bomb in September 1940 during the London Blitz, and although the initial explosion did not destroy the records, the subsequent fire would do. About 60% of the service records were completely destroyed that day, those that remain fit into the following categories



One of the ‘Burnt Records’

 The Burnt Collection

About one third of the records were retrieved from the ruins, and put in storage, extensive work later took place to preserve and restore these remaining records, they are about 2 million in number, and are available on microfilm at the National Archives, or by subscription on Ancestry, originals are not permitted to be accessed due to their fragility.

The Un-burnt Collection

About 750,000 records escaped destruction being stored as they were in a different building.


Therefore unfortunately most people will find that they are unable to locate their family record of military service. If you can, you are lucky.

Records for personnel who served after the war and in WW2 are still restricted and will not be completely open access for many more years.

New CD of Baptisms

The Manchester and Lancashire Family History have released their latest CD of Catholic baptisms, this volume contains the following Manchester Catholic registers:

  • Corpus Christi, Miles Platting: 1890-1908
  • St. Edward, Rusholme: 1862-1908
  • St John, Chorlton-cum-Hardy: 1893-1931
  • St. Mary, Levenshulme: 1853-1920
  • St. Michael, Ancoats: 1877-1917

It is available for the very reasonable price of £4.25 from their Online Bookshop