Sunday 3 September 2017

Lanarkshire Local and Family History Show 2017 report

The Lanarkshire Local and Family History Show ( yesterday in Motherwell was yet another great success, with many folk attending Scotland's largest family history show at the town's main theatre. I arrived just after 10am and caught up with many friends from societies across Scotland, as well as in the commercial sector.

Amongst those I spoke to was Helen Grant of Scottish Monumental Inscriptions (, who continues to travel the country with volunteers to transcribe and photograph headstones. A recent partnership with FindmyPast ( has helped to make many of the records further accessible on another platform, helping to place the collection in position as one of the mainstays of the Scottish family history toolkit. Also present was Tony Beardshaw with his Yorkshire based company My History (, who updated me on how things were going, including a recent acquisition his company has made of a company making plastic wallets, in much demand by family historians (so get your orders in!).

I also caught up with David McNay of the Scottish Military Research Group (, who updated me on some recent frustrations the group has experienced with the Photobucket photograph platform, which houses many images for memorials across the country, with plans now in place to make many images previously on that platform available on Flickr instead, with additional options being explored as a more longterm solution. David also updated me on the collection of over a thousand soldiers service record and War Office papers microfilms that he personally retrieved from the English based National Archives ( in Kew five years ago, informing me that these have now been deposited with Glasgow City Archives, although they are at present unindexed.

At 11am I helped on the Ask the Experts stall, which was again staffed by volunteers from the Scottish Genealogy Network ( I had a few queries predominantly on Irish issues, with one enquiry taking 45 minutes to resolve, and another demonstrating how to access the Irish Register of Deeds on FamilySearch (see my step-through guide article in the current issue 186 of Your Family History magazine on this topic).

I also gave a talk entitled Down and Out in Scotland - Researching Ancestral Crisis to a fairly busy theatre, and managed to catch part of Ruth Washbrook's presentation on the National Library of Scotland’s Moving Image Archive based at the Kelvin Hall in Glasgow, a facility I am very much looking forward to visiting in the near future.


After the event, several members of the Scottish Genealogy Network met up for a few drinks and conversation, to update each other on developments within the Scottish family history world and to discuss plans for our forthcoming CPD day in November. A great evening was enjoyed by all in attendance!

A huge thanks to the organisers of the Motherwell event, and I look forward to next year's event!


My next 5 week Scottish Research Online course commences Sept 11th 2017 - details at For my genealogy guide books, visit, whilst details of my research service are at Further content is also published daily on The GENES Blog Facebook page at

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