Saturday, 22 December 2007

Here comes 2008

So here we go...! My first ever blog, no ideas where I'm going with it, but the aim is to try and keep you informed of things happening genealogically in Scotland, and also further afield. I thought I'd start off by listing a few things to keep an eye out for next year...

1) BBC Radio Scotland's new series of Digging Up Your Roots is provisionally slated to start on Jan 6th. I get to make an appearance in the 4th prog (27th), where we discuss the axe murder of my three times great granny, and investigate the impact that it had on her brother. I'm also slated to appear on BBC1's Reporting Scotland on Jan 3rd to discuss another murder I've been investigating for a client, but I'll say more about that closer to the time!

2) The Scotland's People website ( will be updated shortly with the release of births for 1907, marriages for 1932 and deaths for 1957. But the big news is that all Scottish record index entries to the present day will be made available online, although the digitised records themselves will not be. This is great news for those researching Scottish ancestry as it brings Scotland into line with the availability of English and Welsh indexes. Further developments down the line will include the release of the death records held at the GROS (currently being indexed), and the digitisation of the Roman Catholic baptismal and marriage registers for Scotland.

Of course, the big news is the imminent opening of the Scotland's People Centre in Spring (see The centre is being created out of the current General Register Office for Scotland (GROS), the National Archives for Scotland (NAS) and the Court of the Lord Lyon, and sees many changes and advantages for researchers. The current plan is that there will be two hours free access for anyone wishing to pop in and carry out some research, a full day's access will be dropped from £17 to £10, and the research terminal will have access to not only the current digitised birth, marriage, death and census images, but also to the registers held by the Court of the Lord Lyon, the sasine abridgements, and much more. The current GROS dome is to become an exhibition centre, and the main point of access for research will be in the current NAS building - so big, but very welcome, changes!

3) Next year is going to be a great year for those with Irish ancestry. The 1911 Irish Census for the whole island, north and south, has been digitised and is being released throughout the year by the National Archives of Ireland. The records for Dublin are already available, soon to be followed by those for Kerry, Antrim and Down. By the end of the year, the coverage for the whole island will be complete, and then onto the 1901 census! See

4) January sees the start of the second group of students on the Postgraduate certificate course in Genealogical Studies at the University of Strathclyde, and for the first time, there is a distance learning option. I'll be working as a tutorial assistant on the course whilst studying for the PgDip, so good luck to you if you are about to embark on it - it is a lot of fun!

Anyway, have a great Christmas, and a brilliant Hogmanay!



Lois said...

Great informative blog Chris- keep up the good work.

Chris Paton said...

Cheers Lois!


Jack said...

Hi Chris,
The news about the daily charge being reduced to £10 will be welcomed by many.
I can only hope that Park Circus in Glasgow will do something similar!

Chris Paton said...

Hi Jack,

You'll notice the post on East Ayrshire's new centre as well - my understanding is that they too will be charging a fee of £10 a day, though obviously there is a long way to go between now and it's opening, so it could still change. So yes, it would be great if Glasgow joined the party!