Sunday, November 08, 2009

Scottish Genealogy News

Scottish Genealogy News and Events (SGNE): PRONI clarification on closure in late 2010:

"The Public Record Office of Northern Ireland (PRONI) is concerned to note that inaccurate and incomplete information is being disseminated about its plans for preparing and moving the records to a new building, and the effect this will have on researchers. This note is intended to clarify the matter.

The on-site closure is due to begin in September 2010. PRONI has given twelve months forewarning in order to enable customers to plan their research programmes accordingly. Visiting groups and individuals will, therefore, know that they should not make plans to visit during the period of disruption, but that they may re-schedule to visit earlier or later. If later, then they will be visiting PRONI in its new premises with its much enhanced research facilities and improved overall service. There are well known deficiencies in the present service, owing to the age of the building and its inadequate storage facilities. A properly-conducted move and adequate time for testing new systems in the new building will lead to a much better experience for researchers.

It is important to realise that the temporary on-site closure will last no longer than 8 months. If the necessary work is completed before that, the re-opening date will be reviewed. . . . ."

Sources for genealogical research, both commercial and personal, are not restricted to PRONI. The 1911 Census, which covers all of Ireland, is now available on-line, at no charge, at; the 1901 Census for Ireland will also be available before any disruption to PRONI’s on-site service takes place. These are key sources for family history. Another key source, Griffith’s Valuation, is also now on-line, again at no charge, at

Within PRONI, the recent launch of a number of 19th century street directories is another new and free on-line resource for family history research. Others will follow in the coming months, including the surviving fragments of three 18th century Census returns, adding to the PRONI sources already available on-line. There will, therefore, be a range of archive material for researchers to work on while they’ are unable to access PRONI’s premises.


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