Bringing your family history and heritage together

updated Tuesday, 11th June 2019

News and Events...

The society aims to provide products, services and an inspirational and exciting programme of events and activities for members and visitors alike.

Latest news

Society Annual General Meeting Tuesday, 25th June, starting at 7.15 pm. The venue is the William East Room at Hall Place, (one of Berkshire's 'Grand Houses') and home of Berkshire College of Agriculture, at Burchetts Green, Maidenhead.

Hall Place

Photograph: Andrew Smith Hall Place, Berkshire College of Agriculture CC-BY-SA-2.0

Kathy Chater's talk follows on 'Film and sound archives for the family historian'. [Note: The Centre will be closed on the evening of 25th June]

New membership year Starts 1st July and runs to 30th June 2020 Now's the time to join  Find out more

Saturday, 22nd June Midsummer Book Sale from mid-day


Events at The Centre for Heritage and Family History

CashRegister website2

Booking now for July - September events. Always book in advance to be sure of your place. Highlights:

  • Thursday afternoon talks superb speakers, meet old friends and make new ones, and enjoy a cup of tea and a slice of cake. The Summer series, 'Shops and Businesses' starts next month.
    • Next talk — Saturday, 13th July Shops and Businesses: Reading's Print Industry Book now
  • CourseBasic Latin for family historians Thursdays in September Book now
  • Workshops   Censuses of Scotland, Ireland and Overseas on Saturday, 15th June. Parish Registers on Saturday, 28th September Book now
  • Heritage walks and tours Tours and walks for May and June were soon fully booked. Book for July and August tours and walks
  • DNA interest group The group meets next on 27th July 

View July-September events Opens as a PDF in new window

View April-June events Opens as a PDF in new window

Grand Houses website


Branch meetings and local events

The society runs six branches that meet monthly in Abingdon, Bracknell, Newbury, Reading, Windsor and Woodley. Discover what's happening


Discover your ancestors at The Centre

The Centre for Heritage and Family History

  Reading Library cleaned resized3 website

Research Zone opening times:

Monday: 11.00 to 16.00 (not Bank Holidays)

Tuesday: 10.30 to 16.00 and 18.45 to 21.00 – (not evenings of 11th and 25th June)

Saturday: 10.30 to 14.30

and the last Thursday each month from 10.30 to 16.00

The Centre for Heritage and Family History, (2nd Floor, Reading Central Library, Abbey Square, Reading, Berkshire RG1 3BQ)easy to reach and fully set up for talks, events, meetings, courses, workshops.

In the Zone

WHEREVER your ancestors came from, this is the place to research your family historywith volunteers on hand to help and advise you. About The Centre

FREE access to:

FINDMYPAST  Search Berkshire Baptisms now

THE 1939 REGISTERKey 20th century records

THE GENEALOGIST data you may not find elsewhere  

BRITISH NEWSPAPER ARCHIVE — over 32 million digitised newspaper pages from 1700 onwards. Includes 32,000+ editions of seven Berkshire papers (1770-1999) Search newspapers now

ANCESTRYSearch the WORLDWIDE edition

The society can help your research in so many ways — lots of helpful information here  How to get started

About the society


Members' matters

NEW MEMBERS  Looking to discover the real family history? Find those ancestors — and JOIN THE SOCIETY

CURRENT MEMBERS Renewals are due now for 2019/20 — unless you took up the extended offer (from April or later).  Download your renewal form or Renew online now

MEMBERS' AREA RECENTLY ADDED — key websites to help in finding Scottish ancestors Discover the best Irish websites for your research too. Just two of some 250 items in the Members' Area. Not registered? Do it now

Gift Memberships are not available but will be back later in the year.

Follow  @BerkshireFHS   on TWITTER  and link up with Berkshire Genealogy on FACEBOOK


More News and Resources

New series of Who Do You Think You Are? Names announced including Berkshire's own Kate Winslet

Irish Civil Registration additions. You can now search online for births (1864-1918), marriages (1864-1943) and deaths (1878-1968) at Irish Genealogy.

Irish Genealogy News   Claire Santry's blog

National Archives of Ireland — new website design Learn more

DNA testing For more about DNA in family history, visit the ISOGG wiki

New Archive Card launch now delayed to August. Latest details

Great Migration Parish Map American Ancestors has a new web mapping app showing last known (English and Welsh) parishes of confirmed emigrants to New England from 1620 to 1640. Find the eight people who  in 1638 left Caversham. More details

New York passenger arrivals 1820-1957 Ellis Island website


Publications for Berkshire and elsewhere

County-wide CDs:

Berkshire Baptisms ◊  Content and coverage

NEW 4th Edition Berkshire Marriages ◊  Places and dates

Berkshire Burials ◊  Content and coverage

NEW War Memorials CD, and NEW Berkshire Monumental Inscriptions Volume 3 CD Buy now

Members enjoy valuable savings on society publications and when booking their place for an event

Buy publications (some for other counties too) at The Centre for Heritage and Family History or  visit the online Bookshop

Volunteers are vital

Unpaid volunteers run all aspects of society operations.

With the society flourishing at The Centre for Heritage and Family History in Reading's Abbey Quarter, it is easier than ever for you to volunteer and make a difference. Play a part behind the scenes or take a 'front of house' role with visitors at meetings, events and other activities.

Being a volunteer is fun, it is socially and personally rewarding, and fulfilling. Give a little, gain a lot Come and chat with us - or send an email

updated Tuesday, 11th June 2019

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Reviewed 30th December 2018


Berkshire Family History Society is registered as Charity No. 283010 with the Charity Commission


This service is provided by Berkshire Family History Society and its wholly owned subsidiary Berkshire Family History Enterprises Ltd. The Society is a registered charity in England and Wales (No. 283010) and the Company is registered at Companies House (No 4733795). Berkshire Family History Society is registered under the Data Protection Act (Registration reference Z6777187) with the Information Commissioner's Office

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Revised 24 April 2017

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