North Ayrshire Provost Ian Clarkson and Elected Members were among guests at the celebration event, where they heard more about one of the oldest and most complete Burgh archive collections in Scotland.
They also enjoyed an exhibition of archives dating from 1322 to 1975 from the collection, which included a rare opportunity to view the Irvine Charter of King Robert the Bruce, dated 1322, the Irvine Charter of King Robert II, dated 1372, and a Charter granted by Mary, Queen of Scots, from 1545.
Ayrshire Archives was established in 1996 to provide the archive service for North Ayrshire, East Ayrshire and South Ayrshire councils. Collections are located across Ayrshire, including at the Burns Monument Centre in Kilmarnock and Ayrshire Archives HQ at Auchincruive.
The archive service looks after and provides access to irreplaceable records of historical importance belonging to all three authorities and their predecessors, as well as private records that relate to the historical development of Ayrshire and Arran.
The collection can be used for research, learning and legal purposes, offering an insight into the history and development of families and individuals, communities, buildings and the physical environment, social and economic landscape and politics of the past.
Provost Ian Clarkson said: “What a truly fascinating collection of records we have at Irvine Townhouse. It was a treat to see these important Irvine Charter documents dating back to the 14th century.
“The Irvine Burgh Archive is a real treasure trove for anyone researching specific aspects of the town’s history, with trained staff able to help you along the way.
“Along with our Family History Service, which is also based at the venue, this is an extremely valuable resource for the people of North Ayrshire.”
For more information on how to trace your ancestors using North Ayrshire Council’s Family History service, click here.
Appointments to view the Irvine Burgh Archives are available at Irvine Townhouse on Thursdays between 9.30am and 1pm, then from 2pm to 4pm. To book, or for more information on Ayrshire Archives and collections relating to North Ayrshire, click here. You can also follow Ayrshire Archives on Facebook and Twitter
COMMENT: for more on Ayrshire Archives's burgh records holdings visit https://ayrshirearchives.wordpress.com/the-catalogues/burgh-records/.
And very soon, I just might be able to do some look-ups for you - all being well, I am moving to Irvine in a fortnight's time!
Order Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet (2nd ed) at https://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-Family-History-on-the-Internet-Paperback/p/16483. My next Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs course starts 4 November 2019 - see https://www.pharostutors.com/details.php?coursenumber=302. Further news published daily on The GENES Blog Facebook page, and on Twitter @genesblog.