Coffee Time? The Re-launch of workshops for family and local historians

Colour photograph showing books on a dark wooden shelf. The photos blurs out of focus beyond the first shelf.

By Matthew Jones, Assistant County Archivist

I’m delighted to say that the Record Office has launched a new programme of “coffee time” workshops for 2023, beginning in January with a session on how to start your family tree

As with so many things, the workshops scheduled for 2020 were interrupted by the pandemic and we were sadly unable to resume in 2021 or 2022.

So, it’s great to be back and to have the support of colleagues in the Record Office (Imogen Russell and Abigail Hartley), the Library Service (Sue Worrall and Sarah Godfrey) and former colleague Dr Caroline Adams who now works as an independent archivist, historian and public speaker.

Our exciting programme for 2023 is as follows:

11 JanuaryHow to start your family tree
1 FebruaryResearching the history of your house
1 MarchGetting started with
5 AprilReading old handwriting
3 MayOld photographs: how to identify, date and care for them
7 JuneTracing your army ancestors
5 JulyNewspapers for family and local history
6 SeptemberGetting started with
4 OctoberDiscovering wills and other probate records
1 NovemberResearching the history of your house

The sessions will start at 10am and run for 1 to 2 hours, depending on the topic, and light refreshments will be provided.

They are aimed primarily at beginners, but it’s not unusual for someone who has been researching for a year or two to learn something new. For the Ancestry sessions, to benefit fully you will need to have some basic IT skills so I would recommend the computer buddy sessions run by the Library Service.

Colour photograph of seven people viewing documents on a large black table. Cloth weights are visible, as are bound newspaper volumes and aerial photographs.

Ever mindful of the ongoing Covid and flu situation, we may have a window open during the session so, during the winter months especially, I would recommend bringing some warm clothing with you. And if you suspect that you may have Covid or flu, we would ask you not to attend.

For more information, including details on how to book, visit the Record Office’s What’s On page.

I hope you will join us, whether that be for one or all of the sessions, and look forward to seeing you there.

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