1: Berkshire Name Search (BNS)

The society offers a search service covering a range of databases, for members who are unable to visit The Centre and don’t wish to purchase the society’s CDs.  It’s as easy as ABC!

How to request a Berkshire Name Search

A – Search the database

You can find out whether the names you are researching are in our databases, and how many occurrences there are, in our Surnames Index.

B – Submit Enquiry Form (optional)

Some researchers like to clarify any questions they have about the service before finalising their search requirements.  A society volunteer will respond to your enquiry as soon as they are able.

C – Create BNS Request

Once you are quite clear on the searches that will best meet your needs, create a BNS request..  The form contains a calculator that will work out the costs for you and once you’re happy you can place your order

A society volunteer will  carry out the search and send you the results, which will include the date, full name and event type.

2: Paid for research services

If you need paid research services, beyond a BNS, the society can supply a list of names and contact details of researchers who undertake commissioned projects.

This information is offered as a public service and inclusion of a researcher on the list neither constitutes nor implies recommendation, endorsement or warranty of any kind by the society.

You should always negotiate and pay for any commissioned work directly and entirely with the researcher.




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Berkshire Family History Society works to meet the needs of those researching their ancestry across the UK and overseas – as well as those looking for former relatives in historic Berkshire.  You do not need to be a member to benefit.

The society offers:

  • Research Zone in central Reading that is free to use and open to all

  • Free access at The Centre for Heritage and Family History to online resources like FindMyPast, the 1939 Register, The Genealogist, the British Newspaper Archive and Ancestry (the worldwide edition)

  • Regular free help and advice sessions

  • Meetings in Abingdon, BracknellNewbury, Reading, Windsor and Woodley — open to everyone

  • Online discussion list for members  informed answers to research queries and advice from experienced researchers

  • Members’ Area with data and other information not readily accessible elsewhere

  • Indexes and transcriptions of Berkshire’s historic records on CD — parish registers, probate documents, monumental inscriptions, maps, First World War history and more

  • Quarterly magazine, the Berkshire Family Historian, for members

  • a chance to join in project work, recording, transcribing and helping to preserve records

  • Links to the research experience, advice and support of members worldwide

  • Opportunities to volunteer and so help others with their family history