Family Trees, Narratives and Finding Living Relatives

How I work

The level of research is entirely dependent on the client’s wishes. I will keep you informed of my progress, and costings on a regular basis. 

I generally suggest that you pay in installments as the research progresses. My charges start from £25.00 per hour, plus expenses for certificates, documents, and any travel costs. I will check with you before making a long journey to a records office or similar.

While family trees can take years to research, a great deal can be achieved within the first few weeks or months. Many also choose to stop and start to spread out the research during the course of a few years.

No job too small

Family tree research is becoming more and more popular. Many of my customers have already spent a great deal of time on their trees, and just need help past that frustrating brick wall that can appear from time to time. 

For me, these jobs are just as satisfying as starting from scratch, and I am always willing to assist someone with their research, however small the job might be. 

Click the button below to contact me to find out more.

A Family Tree

Most customers do not necessarily want to trace their family roots back hundreds of years, but simply want to know more about their 19th and 20th century ancestors. There is so much information that can be gleaned from records of the passed 200 years, and concentrating on this relatively recent history allows for in depth, quality research. However, tracing a family back prior to the 1800s can still yield much information.

In this computer age, it is very easy to obtain software to help you to draw your family tree. However, I prefer the traditional pen and ink method, which I believe is far more pleasing to the eye, and will never look ‘out of date’. I use indian ink, and good quality artists’ paper, which means it can be rolled and tied up on presentation to the customer.

The trees I produce are generally A1 sized (84cm x 60cm), or A2-sized (60cm x 42cm), and show all the direct ancestors, their siblings, and their spouses. They also note the years of birth, marriage and death of each ancestor, and (if desired) their occupations. (See example below). The trees are drawn on good quality off-white paper.


Family Narrative

Family trees are of course fascinating documents. However, they tend to leave one asking many questions: Where did these people live? What did they do for a living? Did any of them have servants in the house, or work as servants themselves…? 


I can also produce a detailed narrative, taking each ancestor at a time, and taking the customer on a journey through their ancestors’ lives. These narratives bring the family trees to life, and give the customer a more personal connection to their ancestors.

The research and writing

The information in the narratives are gleaned from the census records, birth, marriage and death records, baptisms, wills, and other valuable sources; they give a far deeper insight into our ancestors’ lives than a basic family tree. 

They are written using solely the facts, with no speculation or assumptions woven in. I have always sought to bring the customer closer to their ancestors in this way. 

Narratives on a fair-sized tree can run up to 5000 words. I highly recommend them for an accompaniment to the tree.

Finding Living Relatives

Although I had not planned to, as a consequence of my work I have put several people in touch with long-lost relatives. Tracing living relatives is not always straight-forward, and one has to be extremely careful when attempting to make contact with people as some relatives do not want to know. (Although fortunately this is quite rare). However, I have united many people with cousins, brothers & sisters, aunts & uncles, and in a few of cases the natural parents of clients who were adopted. However, adoption cases are incredibly sensitive, and I provide details to the clients only, and do not contact third parties myself. Click here for more details