Wednesday, 22 December 2010

Start Your Family Tree Week

From FindmyPast:

Start Your Family Tree Week runs from 26 December 2010 until 1 January 2011

The 26th December 2010 will see the launch of the UK's first ever family history awareness campaign, Start Your Family Tree Week, at a time when family is at the forefront of the nation's minds. Taking part in Start Your Family Tree Week are,,, Eneclann, the Society of Genealogists, My History, BBC Who Do You Think You Are Magazine, Your Family Tree and Family Tree magazine and the week is supported by the Federation of Family History Societies and the UK's digital champion Martha Lane Fox.

Although the popularity of family history has grown dramatically in the UK over the past decade, with 42% of the population now saying they have started researching their ancestors, one in three people say they would like to start delving into their family's past but have no idea where to begin*. Start Your Family Tree Week has been launched to encourage people to discover more about their ancestors in a fun and exciting way. The week, which will run until the 1st January 2011, will show people how to take their first steps in family history research with free guides and charts to download, competitions, special offers on participating websites and daily family history activities for all the family.

Further details on Start Your Family Tree Week can be found at:

Debra Chatfield, Marketing Manager at, said: "Start Your Family Tree Week will help people make the most of Christmas family gatherings to pass on their family memories across the generations, and to share in brand new discoveries by using online family history resources.
The internet has made it so much easier to trace your family tree and learn about your family's own unique story, full of colourful, real-life characters from the past. Every family has its intrigues, well-kept secrets and heart-warming tales, and I believe we could soon see family history becoming the traditional Christmas pastime for all the family."

Rhoda Breakell, head of Genes Reunited, comments: "Grannies sinking sherries, dads taking an afternoon nap and siblings squabbling is a typical Christmas Day for most, but it makes you wonder whether your family has always been like that. With this year's yuletide festivities just around the corner it's a great time for you to think about your family's roots. Start Your Family Tree Week is an ideal time to start exploring your family history, whether it's tracing great-grandparents' names, searching military records or even discovering that you have a famous sportsperson in your gene pool, the resources and offers available from 26th December will make it an easy and fun journey."

Martha Lane Fox, UK Digital Champion comments: "I think's'Go ON: Start Your Family Tree Week' is a great idea. Whilst the internet
has become a gateway to the future for many it is also an amazingly powerful tool for uncovering the past and reconnecting people in ways that were once unimaginable. Christmas is the perfect time for families to explore their history and encourage older relatives to go online for the first time - I hope that this initiative is a great success and urge everyone to get involved."

Else Churchill, Genealogist at The Society of Genealogists added: "The Society of Genealogists has been helping people discover their roots for 100 years. Hence we are delighted to support Start Your Family History Week and introduce as many as we can to the fascinations of genealogy."

Professional genealogical problem solving and research
Researching Scottish Family History (New book)


hummer said...

Great information to know! Thanks!

Brian Thomson said...

The initiative is welcome but it states that 42% of UK population have started researching their ancestors and one in three would like to start (ie 33%) , so that means only 25% of the British population have little or no interest in genealogy ?.

Unfortunately that is unbelievable - yes there are lies, damn lies and spurious statistics

Chris Paton said...

I never take statistics too seriously, partly because they can be compiled and interpreted in so many different ways.

I think it kind of misses the point though - it's an opportunity. If you're already researching your tree, then it will be of little interest. If not, then it may of immense interest. Ultimately whether people get involved or not is going to boil down to the odds being 50-50 - either they will or they won't!


Anonymous said...

Hi Chris,
I agree it's an opportunity for people, but I don't agree that offering questionable statistics is helpful marketing for family history research - which should after all be about accuracy

Chris Paton said...

Family history research is about accuracy, certainly, but this is about advertising - I suspect that is not the same thing!

I'm not saying you are right or wrong Brian, I donlt know, I did not do the research for the stats, but to be honest, I just don't find it that relevant. Anything that can encourage people to have a look at their ancestry for themselves can only be a good thing. If there is a problem with the stats, the best bet is to challenge brightsolid on that, and on how they were compiled. Do you have different figures from another source that disproves them?