Monday, October 29, 2007

Family historians aghast in England and Wales

Family historians aghast as paper records locked away before online version ready | Special reports | Guardian Unlimited:
"For years, genealogists and family historians have pored over the massive green and maroon ledgers at the Family Records Centre in London, searching for details of more than 150 years of births, marriages and deaths. But there was anger or outright incredulity this weekend as professional and amateur researchers arrived to find most of the shelves bare.

There will never again be public access to the paper records, the index to where in the country all the births, marriages and deaths were registered, but - as so often with government IT projects - the timetable for the online version intended to replace them has collapsed. According to a spokesman for the Office for National Statistics, which is responsible for the General Records Office, 'the present target is to have the online index available by mid-2009'. . . . . "

an absolutely stupid and under researched article in today's GUARDiAN newspaper

"Interim microfiche system unusable, say researchers of births, marriages and deaths "

I bookmark England and Wales BMD Index: 1837-1983 and
because both are far better and user friendly than the microfiche system used world wide AKA St Cath's index

"The FreeBMD Database was last updated on Sat 13 Oct 2007 and currently contains 140,193,689 distinct records (179,976,793 total records).

On Sun 28 Oct 2007 FreeBMD users did 236,324 searches. "
and all run as a charity by volunteeers


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