Fairs and open days

Welcome to the fairs and open days page

Close focus Event 3 website

In the past, Berkshire Family History Society usually supported the national family history events (like Who Do You Think You Are? LIVE — now a discontinued annual event).

From 2018, Berkshire Family History Society plans to support a selection of family history fairs, open days and workshops staged by local organisations, family history societies, and others.

At these events, you will usually be able to join the society, and to buy the society's published CDs, together with a selection of other items from the publications range.

If your ancestors lived in the historic 'old' county of Berkshire, transcriptions in three fully searchable 'compilation' CDs — Berkshire Baptisms, Berkshire Marriages, and Berkshire Burials (containing some 2 million names in total) — are essential finding aids.

Other CDs available include transcriptions of Berkshire parish registers by individual parish, indexes to Berkshire's coroners' records, poor law papers, probate records, First World War accounts (at home and abroad) and full details — with photographs — of monumental inscriptions for many parishes and burial grounds.

CDs include transcriptions of the records of North Berkshire and the Vale of the White Horse too.

Family and local historians will be interested to see the historic maps, directories, electoral rolls, and a range of topographical and family history publications. Visit the online shop for details of current publications and how to buy them.

An extensive Berkshire Search facility (including publications mentioned above) is usually available at events too.

Berkshire Family History Society has attended (or plans to attend) these out-of county events (the links to which will open in a new window):

Saturday, 30th June — SWAG Fair (South West Area Group Family History Event) at the STEAM Museum of the Great Western Railway, Swindon, Wilts SN2 2EY Get more details

Saturday, 28th July Buckinghamshire FHS Open Day at The Grange School, Wendover Way, Aylesbury HP21 7NH (Link no longer current)

Saturday, 22nd September The Family History Show, London at Sandown Park Racecourse, Sandown Park, Portsmouth Rd, Esher KT10 9AJ  Find out more

Saturday, 6th October — Oxfordshire FHS Family History Fair at Marlborough School, Woodstock, Oxfordshire OX20 1LP  First details

Saturday, 3rd November West Surrey FHS Open Day at Woking Leisure Centre, Kingfield Road, Woking GU22 9BA Details

Page reviewed and revised 23rd September 2018

All Centre Events

Welcome. The Centre for Heritage and Family History is the home of Berkshire Family History Society at Reading Central Library. The Centre provides a new focus for a range of events and activities designed for today's family historians (wherever their interests), local historians and others who just enjoy learning more about the past.

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Overview September to December 2018

THURSDAY AFTERNOON TALKS to inform and entertain you, with tea and cake too, and featuring expert speakers with a passion and flair for their subjects. The autumn talks take 'The Armistice' as their theme, to mark the 100th anniversary that falls in November.

GUIDED WALKS in Reading in October and November

VISITS TO ARCHIVES From time to time, the society organises visits to The National Archives, to the London Metropolitan Archives, and to other archives.

WORKSHOPS This autumn sees two DNA workshops, and another on parish registers — a key resource for family historians — and a chance to understand how to get the best from available indexes, transcriptions and the original records themselves.

Other Saturday workshops focus on Writing up your family history and on Military records.

LUNCHTIME Drop-in sessions No booking needed, just turn up with your questions and get help on different aspects of your research. Sessions include Breaking down brickwalls, and Military records and research. 

TUESDAY EVENING ‘Natter Groups’ — informal discussion at The Centre on the first Tuesday evening in the month from 18.45.

BEGINNERS' FAMILY HISTORY COURSE starts in October. Contact the Booking Administrator if you would like to join.

GROUP TOURS of The Centre for Heritage and Family History are organised (with a talk as well if required) by prior arrangement.

When you join the society, as a member you enjoy immediate discounts on fees for events where fees are payable. One more benefit that makes membership such good value.


The Centre for Heritage and Family History, 2nd Floor, Reading Central Library, Abbey Square, Reading, Berkshire RG1 3BQ.

Phone: 0118 950 9553


The venue is fully accessible for wheelchair users. It has a lift and disabled toilets. Disabled parking places are generally available directly in front of the library (maximum stay four hours).

Getting here

Download the 'How to find us' leaflet


Free parking is available for those attending evening and Saturday events — please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for details.

Ensure your place at your chosen events

Use this link to book your places.

Page revised 23rd September 2018

Additional information