Updated 27 May 2004

WIRKSWORTH Parish Records 1600-1900

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Lookups at Family Record Centre

For look-ups of all births, marriages and deaths you need to go to the Family Record Centre (used to be St Catherines House but now moved and renamed) Web site is http://www.familyrecords.gov.uk/frc/default.htm
Martin Worthy sends this Open Letter for those wanting to get Certificates. Thanks Martin.

Original question

To: [DERBYSGEN-L@rootsweb.com]
Sent: Thursday, May 27, 2004 7:40 AM
Subject: [DBY] Visiting Derbyshire

> Hi,
> I live in New Zealand, and have tracked my mothers Maternal family back to
> approx 1800, based mostly in Derbyshire.
> My husband and I are looking at making a trip to Derbyshire. I want to make
> sure we are in the right area for the research I want to do while there.
> Although I know who my Ancestors were, and I know they must have died. I
> don't know when or where they died so can't check the burial records for the
> appropriate cemetary. Is there a location with full listing for all the
> cemetaries in Derbyshire that I would be able to access while there?
> I beleive I have figured out who some of my Great Aunts & Uncles married, so am
> currently trying to prove these so can hopefully follow my family forward from
> there.
> I could be wrong but I have the idea that when the records were at St
Catherines(many years ago) you could go there and sight the record before
ordering it, and this way you could insure that the purchased certificates
would be relevant. Is there anywhere that you can do this now?
> If I was to order Certs before I came over can anyone tell me how much
thay are and the address to get them from?
> Thanks in Advance
> Marie Pullan
> NZ

Martin's answer

From:  M Worthy [mjrworthy@btinternet.com]
Subject:  Re: [DBY] Visiting Derbyshire 
Date:  Thu, 27 May 2004 09:41:19 +0100 
To:  [DERBYSGEN-L@rootsweb.com]  

I started off writing to Marie but thought others on the board might be
interested so here is an open letter reply.

Hi Marie,

For look-ups of all births, marriages and deaths you need to go to the
Family Record Centre (used to be St Catherines House but now moved and
renamed) Web site is 


A lot of people expect to see the certificates first. This is NOT the case.
The records office has handwritten ledgers split into quarters within years
and all they hold is the surname, Christian name, registration district and
the unique reference number you need when ordering. In the case of death
registers sometimes the age is given too.
Full certificates are £7 each if you order online or at the FRC.
You should be aware that the turnaround time is currently 8 days from
ordering to receiving certificates. Prob longer if posted to NZ.
There is a 'priority' overnight service but I think that costs £20+ each
cert !!

Here is a real life example since I was up there last week looking for a
marriage certificate.
Once I had found the possible Groom I recorded the reference numbers of all
likely suspects. I then had to look up the bride separately and cross
checked the references until I found the one that was the same. It took
about 3 attempts before I matched the correct pair up!

Because you can't see the full certificate before ordering you sometimes see
people offering free certificates on the board because they selected the
wrong one when searching ...... :-( I was luck and all mine were OK but
the friend I went up with had ordered two which were the wrong person.

I've just read this through and it looks all doom and despondency :-O It
is not meant to be. Just want you to go there with your eyes wide open for
the problems you may encounter.

You can pay to find the reference numbers you need by going to

http://www.1837online.com/Trace2web/ but their search engine is a little
crude only allows searches on first 3 letters of surname) so at 10p per
page search it can mount up. But will allow you to search for those
important reference numbers.

If you know roughly what you need you could ask on the board if anyone is
going up there soon and get them to look up and order what you need.
I normally ask around my circle of fellow searchers if they need anything
whilst I am there. My next visit will probably be in a month or two.

If you need anything else clarifying let me know.

Compiled, formatted, hyperlinked, encoded, and copyright © 2004, John Palmer . All Rights Reserved.