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Popular family history sessions open for booking

Published October 20, 2017 10.33am


A popular history session focusing on parish registers is returning to Durham next month.

Mr and Mrs Mole's wedding party of Leasingthorne around 1910

Mr and Mrs Mole's wedding party of Leasingthorne around 1910

Durham County Record Office is holding a talk which will examine church records of baptisms, marriages and burials - some of which go back to the 1530s.

The record office holds these registers for the Durham Diocese, including areas such as Stockton, Sunderland and Gateshead.

Popular sessions return

The parish registers talk, part of a number of 'branching out' sessions for people who already have basic genealogy experience, was previously run in May 2016 and proved very popular.

Dawn Layland, education and outreach archivist at Durham County Council, said: "Before the 1830s, parish registers are really the only source recording the lives and deaths of ordinary people which makes them brilliant for family history.

"Parish registers for Durham aren't available online, so the talk will demonstrate how they can be accessed using our microfilms.

"This session was very popular when we ran it last year and we would encourage people interested in finding out more about their family history to get signed up."

There will also be time after the talk where people can browse and use the researchers' facilities with support from an archivist.

Genealogy courses

For anyone just starting on their genealogy journey, a beginners' course is also set to begin in November.

The three sessions cost a total of £30 and serve as an introduction not only to family history, but to the record office and the sources it has.

The beginners' courses are running on:

Friday 3, 10 and 17 November from 10am to 12pm and Monday 6, 13 and 20 November from 6pm to 8pm.

Booking is essential for both the beginners' course and the branching out sessions - to reserve a place call 03000 267 626.

Further information can also be found at Durham County Record Office.

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