All the latest news

Free Access to Birth Records at My Heritage

Free Access to Birth Records at My Heritage
Starting TODAY [April 18th 2021] MyHeritage are offering FREE access to birth records for a whole week 
MyHeritage’s collection of birth records includes 115 collections containing a total of 1,144,541,613 individual records from all over the world.
Some of the collections contain indexes which help you find out where the birth record is located, while others contain the actual image of the record.
Normally, birth records are free to search, but to view the full record or add it to your tree, you need a Data or Complete plan on MyHeritage.
This week, however, you’ll have full access to all these records absolutely free.
Read more at the link below, you will need to register/create a free account if you don't already have one

Parkside Project

Cheshire Archives & Local Studies - Parkside Project needs your help!

Our popular volunteering project needs your help! You can help us work on our Parkside Asylum project from the comfort of your own home. Volunteers are shown a page relating to a patient who was admitted to Parkside Asylum in Macclesfield and are asked to provide answers based on the notes. Head to the project home page to learn more about the background of the project, the background of the asylum and to volunteer with us – no sign up required. This work will provide researchers with a detailed overview of Parkside and allow for in-depth research using the data created. 

FHF Really Useful Show

FHF Really Useful Show
Don't forget the FHF Really Useful Show is on this coming Saturday 10th April.
It's a brand new set up for this iteration of the show, with lots of new features.
As usual FHSC will have a presence with our Treasurer David Smetham and Social Media Officer Margaret Roberts manning the virtual stall to chat with people about their Cheshire related ancestry
The direct link to the FHSC 'stall' is below
To find out more about the wealth of speakers and workshops and how to buy tickets click on the following link

Are You an Online Jigsaw Addict?

Are You an Online Jigsaw Addict?



During lockdown online jigsaws have become quite popular and so I have decided that I will create a series of jigsaws related to Cheshire


I will be posting a new jigsaw on the FHSC social media pages everyday, so please pop along & follow the Facebook or Twitter feeds [links below] and join in the fun!


There is also a lot more to see on the Society Social Media pages so it's worth following for updates on various blogs, news of free online talks & lectures, what's new on the major genealogy websites with my FridayRoundup and Archive of the Week on a Saturday & lots lots more 


Facebook - 

Twitter - @FHSofCheshire 





𝐅𝐇𝐅 π‘π„π€π‹π‹π˜ 𝐔𝐒𝐄𝐅𝐔𝐋 π…πšπ¦π’π₯𝐲 𝐇𝐒𝐬𝐭𝐨𝐫𝐲 𝐒𝐑𝐨𝐰

𝐅𝐇𝐅 π‘π„π€π‹π‹π˜ 𝐔𝐒𝐄𝐅𝐔𝐋 π…πšπ¦π’π₯𝐲 𝐇𝐒𝐬𝐭𝐨𝐫𝐲 𝐒𝐑𝐨𝐰
𝐅𝐇𝐅 π‘π„π€π‹π‹π˜ 𝐔𝐒𝐄𝐅𝐔𝐋 π…πšπ¦π’π₯𝐲 𝐇𝐒𝐬𝐭𝐨𝐫𝐲 𝐒𝐑𝐨𝐰
Takes place online on Saturday 10th April 2021
Please see link below for joining/registration/ticket details as well as an updated list of speakers 

The Story of Kelsall

The Story of Kelsall

~The Story of Kelsall by Elspeth Thomas~

[with thanks to our friends at the Kelsall Family History Group for news of this]


Local historian and Kelsall resident Mrs Elspeth Thomas for many years researched the history of Kelsall.

Sadly, she died before it was finished and so members of the Kelsall & District Rural Amenties Society [KADRAS] completed & published it in c1996.


This book can now be viewed online via the Kelsall Village website.


Direct link to the PDF:

Update on National Library of Scotland Map Collections

Update on National Library of Scotland Map Collections

For those members who are particualry interested in maps then you might like to know that the National Library of Scotland Map Collections have added another layer of historical maps to the geo-referenced viewer namely:- 

1:25,000 scale Ordnance Survey Great Britain outline layer, published 1945-65.

Link to the site below
Have fun exploring

The Great British Dig: History in Your Back Garden

The Great British Dig: History in Your Back Garden
The Great British Dig: History in Your Back Garden
In The Great British Dig, actor Hugh Dennis is joined by an expert team of archaeologists to excavate back gardens around Britain, in an attempt to uncover the lost history buried beneath our lawns and flower beds – recruiting local people to get digging too.
The series sees the team visit Newcastle in search of a Roman fort, as well attempting to unearth the long-lost Lenton Priory in Nottingham. In North Yorkshire, they must dig deep in the hope of locating a Viking graveyard, and they’re also on the hunt for a secret army base in South Shields.
The experts joining Hugh Dennis on The Great British Dig are Dr Chloe Duckworth, archaeological scientist and lecturer at Newcastle University, archaeologist Richard Taylor and field archaeologist Natasha Billson.
Hugh Dennis said: β€œThe Great British Dig is a fantastic format which combines finding out about the history of where you live and the surprising things that lie under your own back garden. It’s kind of a community archaeology project.”
A pilot episode of The Great British Dig aired on More4 in April 2020, becoming the channel’s most successful one-off programme in 2020. The current series is 4 sixty minute programmes 

Public Health and the 1918-1919 Influenza Pandemic

Public Health and the 1918-1919 Influenza Pandemic
Free National Archives Talk - Fri, 19 Feb 2021, 14:00 GMT

One hundred years ago, the 1918 influenza pandemic wrought havoc across the globe. The first wave of the β€˜flu appeared in the spring of 1918, followed by a more virulent second wave in the autumn, and a third wave in the spring of 1919. In total, it is estimated that the epidemic claimed 225,000 lives in Britain. While the end of the First World War has overshadowed the pandemic in history books, and within collective memory, recent scholarship has sought to uncover the impact of the pandemic on a war-torn society.

This talk will dive into the government’s response to the pandemic, at a time when the cause of influenza was unknown and there was no consensus on treatment. Alongside a look at commentary within national newspapers, this talk will take a look at what records can be found within the state archive: from the response of military institutions and the impact on soldiers to the public health response and concern for citizens.

This talk will be delivered by Laura Robson-Mainwaring, Health Records Specialist, lasting approximately 30 minutes followed by a 15 minute Q&A.

This online talk will be presented on Microsoft Teams. You will be emailed an access link 24 hours in advance. 

Please note you do not need a Teams account to join this event. Instead you can select the β€˜Join anonymously’ option if preferred.


Link to register -


Reminder of RootsTech Online Conference

Reminder of RootsTech Online Conference
Explore your family history for free at RootsTech as the family history conference goes online for 2021
Over the past ten years, RootsTech has brought exciting elements of the genealogy and technology worlds together, transforming the genealogy show-going scene, and celebrating new IT based developments that we, the end users, benefit from when doing our family histories at home, online.
Since 2001 RootsTech has been held in Salt Lake City, Utah, USA; November 2019 saw the first-ever UK-based RootsTech, and now, in the light of the implications of Covid-19 the RootsTech team have decided to take their event global – providing the whole show online as a free and virtual event for people anywhere on Earth (with an internet connection!) to enjoy.
To find out more and register visit the show page at the link below

Brexit Implications

FHSC has had to embrace the change in taxation rules brought about by Brexit.

This only impacts those who live in the European Union:

- if you are a member then tax will be added to your membership fees paid from the 1 January 2021 onwards. These are automatically calculated if you pay by card or PayPal via the website. Other payment methods for EU or ROW memberships have been removed.

- if you purchase products from the shop then tax appropriate to your country of residence will be added to the costs if you live in the EU

FHSC will have to forward this tax to the EU on a quarterly basis


We apologise  for the increase in costs for those of you still in the EU. This was deemed preferable to the alternative which was to prevent EU based members and prevent shop sales into the EU.


Alan Bennett


British History Online makes all research content free to individual users until 30 April 2021

British History Online makes all research content free to individual users until 30 April 2021

British History Online [BHO] offers enhanced access to online material 

BHO is a digital collection of key printed primary and secondary sources for the history of Britain and Ireland, with a special focus on the period 1300 to 1800.

At the start of the Covid-19 pandemic the BHO decided to make all transcribed content freely available to individual users

They have now added 200 volumes of the Premium Content from 2020. This material will remain available until 30 April 2021 in the first instance.


The link to the blog post below [first published for the 2020 offer and now updated] describes what’s included in this latest move.

New 'Surnames' Innovation on the website

New 'Surnames' Innovation on the website
Until now the members interests/Cheshire surnames has only been available to members or registered users of the site
From today [24th December 2020] a read only view is available via the top menu of the webpage.
This enables surname interests to be shared to a wider audience - as anyone can now browse the list [& even add their own surnames interests, after registering with the site]
Hopefully this will stimulate more activity on the website under this particular section, as members can now be contacted by those from outside the Society.
Those wanting to follow-up on a particular surname will contact the relevant member directly through the website, with no access to specific contact details - it is then up the relevant society member whether to respond or not.
Please let the Committee know if you receive any contact at all, it would be intersting to know how popular and beneifical this new innovation proves in the future

Cheshire's Charms: Ancient Villages & Hamlets

Cheshire's Charms: Ancient Villages & Hamlets

Cheshire's Charms: Ancient Villages & Hamlets - a new book by Tony Bostock 


The old county of Cheshire is rich in treasures from the past and has a fascinating history. The county owes much to its geographical position, its natural features - rocks and rivers - and its people, the occupants of the villages, who made and shaped her history. The largely unspoilt rural landscape is dotted with quaint towns and villages, all of which have a story to tell and each has its own unique charm - landscape; architectural gems in the form of churches, houses and cottages; legends and historic curiosities. In this book the author considers over fifty villages explaining the origin of their place-names, their early history and interesting and unique aspects. For those who just wish to learn something of Cheshire's villages and their character, or those who want to get out and explore some of those places which lie off the beaten track, this book will provide much needed information.

120 pages; 177 colour photos, Paperback (6”x9”) coloured,

AVAILABLE NOW from AMAZON BOOKS UK ( or contact the author at

Price Β£12.99 E-book (Kindle), price Β£4.99 


TONY BOSTOCK is the author of a number of books and many articles on various aspects of Cheshire history, contributing regularly to the annual journal, Cheshire History. Much of his work is published on his web-site: He is a regular speaker to local history and family history societies and other organisations throughout the county. As well as being a member of a number of academic societies in the region, he has been an active member of the Executive Committee of Cheshire Local History Association since its formation in 1998: he was chairman for several years. He has also chaired the Northwich Heritage Society and is a member of the Winsford Local History Society, of which he was also chairman for many years. Having retired from a professional life in public service, Tony applies himself to the research and study of local history, heraldry and genealogy





Free Access to Find My Past Military Records

Free Access to Find My Past Military Records
From 5th until 12th November Find My Past are offering free access to all of their military records
You will need to sign up for a free account in order to take advantage of this offer 
You can use any of Findmypast's sites worldwide, but please bear in mind that the start and end times are based on London time (GMT).

Page 5 of 12