A warm welcome and a helping hand to anyone researching their roots in Suffolk, land of the southern folk.


A New Look to the Society's Group Pages

Posted by K Pulford on Thu, 16th Mar 2017

We have reformatted the groups pages so that it is quicker to get to the News section. This is in response to some member's comments. The information is on four tabs with the Intorduction, News, Events and Contacts on separate tabs. When you go to the group page, the news is the first tab to open. So you can immediately start reading the latest news for your group!


Latest Baptism Index CD

Posted by Webmaster on Wed, 15th Mar 2017

 We’re pleased to announce the long awaited CD of Dunwich Deanery baptisms which fills an important gap in our 1813*-1900* records and with over 50,000 entries it’s one of our largest to date.

Dunwich Deanery comprises 48 Anglican parishes centred in an arc around the ancient port of Dunwich from Benacre in the north to Cratfield in the west and Aldringham in the south. For details of each parish and the available years* covered see Suffolk Parishes or visit our Shop where the CD is now available, price £15.32 + p&p.

Our thanks to our dedicated legion of helpers over the years, many working from homes around the country and some overseas, who’ve made this possible.

New Series of Baptism Index CDs

Posted by K Pulford on Thu, 26th Jan 2017

We’re pleased to announce the first of our much awaited new series of Suffolk Baptism Index CDs spanning (where the registers survive) over 100 of those difficult to research early years from 1650 to 1753.

This one, for Clare Deanery, covers 30 Anglican parishes in the South West corner of the county, around Haverhill, and bordering Essex and Cambridgeshire. For details of each parish and the available years covered see Suffolk Parishes or visit our Shop where the CD is now available, price £15.32 + p&p.

Our thanks to Baptism Coordinator for the West of the County, Christine Palmer and her team of dedicated helpers based at the Suffolk Record Office in Bury St Edmunds.


Members' Help Forum

Posted by K Pulford on Sun, 15th Jan 2017

We have become aware that there is an issue on the Members' Help Forum that stopped replies being added to queries. This has now been fix and replies have been added to a number of queries. If you have a query in the help forum or tried and failed to add a comment it is now worthwhile taking another look at the forum.

In general it is worthwhile taking a regular look at the forum to help other members but it might be a way of getting advice on a block that is stopping you getting further in your researches.

A new web facility for members

Posted by K Pulford on Thu, 22nd Dec 2016

When you are doing family history research you often come across a place name which leaves you wondering where is that? This new facility allows you to do just that. Given a place name it will tell you which dioces it is in, which deanery, which hundred and poor law union. It also lists the parish churches and how to find them. It is based on the useful booklet published by SFHS but long out of print, colloquially referred to as the 'Green Book' but is 'How to Find Towns and Villages in Suffolk'. It also allows you to search using 'wildcards' or soundex which gives you a chance to find those places which have been recorded with quirky spellings. A map is displayed so you can see adjacent parishes and where in the county it is located.

You access this new app by logging in to the members area and clicking on the find places menu item.

Happy Hunting!

Latest Marriage Index CD

Posted by Webmaster on Thu, 24th Nov 2016

We’re pleased to announce the first of our much awaited new series of Suffolk Marriage Index CDs spanning over 100 of those difficult to research early years from 1650 to 1753

This one, for Thingoe Deanery, includes 19 parishes in and around Bury St Edmunds including Lackford in the west and Brockley in the south. For details of each parish and the available years covered see Suffolk Parishes or visit our Shop where the CD is now available, price £10 + p&p.

Our thanks to Marriages Coordinator Pamela Palgrave and if you’ve some experience of reading early handwriting and would like to help at one of the Suffolk Record Offices do please contact Pamela.


Introducing Mapping Suffolk’s Stories

Posted by K Pulford on Thu, 10th Nov 2016

As part of the Record Office Heritage Lottery Fund activities it is setting up this project to encourage more organisations in Suffolk to interact with archives. They have appointed Stephen Gilby as the Planning Officer for the project. He writes.

Suffolk Record Office has an exciting ;programme of activity in the pipeline to run alongside the development of The Hold. Called “Mapping Suffolk’s Stories”, it recognises the national and international relevance of the Record Office’s collections.  It will use the engaging nature of historic maps as a starting point for uncovering the unique stories about the people, places and events of our county, often hidden in the archives.

The programme will see the Record Office, aided by the University of Suffolk and a group of teachers, working alongside communities to explore and promote their local heritage to new regional, national and international audiences. Some groups will focus on the initial stimulus of historic maps; others (including schools) will use the maps and new research to learn more about where they live and create contemporary responses to it.

The project’s results will be available to national and international audiences through an exciting, interactive mapping feature that will appear on the Suffolk archives website. “Mapping Suffolk’s Stories” will act as the template for a new way of working for the Record Office – delivering outreach and education “out there” in communities, rather than just relying on activities delivered in branches. To wet your appetite here are a few map images of local maps which are part of the Suffolk Record Office archives.

If you are interested in your community taking part then please email: stephen.gilby@suffolk.gov.uk

The GRO Steps into the 21st Century

Posted by K Pulford on Fri, 4th Nov 2016


The GRO has opened a new web site to support the ordering of certificates.  At the moment the index only covers births and deaths. However, the birth index includes the wife's maiden name and the death the age at death thus giving a boost to family history research.  These indexes at the moment only include birth records from 1837 to 1915 and death records from 1837 to 1957 but they are continuing to capture more data.

To access the index you will have to register with the GRO but this relatively straight forward. There is also talk of extending the service to allow he download of certificates in PDF format.

Cataloguing the Societies Library

Posted by K Pulford on Thu, 13th Oct 2016

Over the years the society has amassed a significant library of books, periodicals, transcriptions and birth briefs. These are held on open access at the Record Office in Ipswich. In the last year or so Alan Bumpstead, Arthur Bird and Doug Howlett have cataloged the collection and there is now a link to these new catelogues on the library page under the Society menu.

Whilst the items can be consulted at the record office they cannot be borrowed. However, members have a limited search service via the society's Librarian, Jean Licence.


New Trustees Appointed

Posted by D A Howlett on Wed, 5th Oct 2016

At our recent Annual General Meeting, Gwyn Thomas was re-elected to serve for a further three year period, and in additon we are pleased to announce that four further Trustees were appointed.

Joan Horton;  Joan has been chairperson of our West of London Group for many years.  Joan has a vast knowledge of family history and written many articles for family history related journals and books. 

Amanda Straderick; Amanda is an active member of our Lowestoft Group and has been minute writer at Trustees' and Group Coordinating Meetings.

Howard King; Howard is chairman of our Ipswich Group and has been very largely responsible for increasing the regular attendance at their monthly meetings, In addition he is responsible for publicising our Society in journals and on Radio Suffolk.

Kevin Pulford;  In addition to being chairman of our Bury St Edmunds Group, Kevin is a very active volunteer working with the Suffolk Record Office. Kevin has also worked with David Talmage (Webmaster) with the development of our "new look website"