Photograph of seven young women in late Victorian costume Show image info

The seven daughters of the Reverend Tucker-Windsor, about 1890 (ref. 0418/3)

Records for Family history

Discover your family history in Bath Record Office.

We offer expert advice to beginners and the more advanced, whether your ancestors lived in Bath or elsewhere.

Start your research with family documents and the recollections of relatives. Then build on them by using the resources in the Record Office to find other pieces of the family history jig-saw.

The best sources to use first are usually

  • records of births, marriages and deaths, which start in 1837
  • census returns, 1841-1911

These records are available on the Internet on a number of different websites, some of which are subscription sites. We offer free access to many of these websites, including Ancestry and Find My Past. The websites cover all of England and Wales (some cover all of the UK, and the wider world), so you can use them wherever your ancestors came from. Find out more about the sources we offer on computer.

If you have traced your family as far back as you can online, and found that they came from Bath or the surrounding area, we may be able to help you with more advanced sources.  Two of the most useful sources are parish registers and burial indexes, but there are a great many other sources which you can use. Depending on the particular family you are researching, street directories, wills, school records, and records of the law courts and poor relief can all provide valuable information.  Details of these and other useful sources, with lists of what we hold, can be found here.

Or you can try a short cut! Information has been extracted from some of these more advanced sources, and has been put on our Bath Ancestors database. Search the database to see if you can find any of your ancestors.