In each you record, you will find a transcript and for those records before 1984, you can also view the original index. The birth, marriage and death records from 1984 onwards were recorded in a computer database only so there is no original image for records post-1984.

Since 1 July 1837, civil registration of births has been a legal requirement of all citizens of England and Wales. In order to find your ancestor’s born before 1837, it is best to search the parish registers. Birth records are a key source to creating your family tree.

All the civil birth records on Findmypast are name-indexed, which makes finding your ancestors so much simpler. The old birth indexes were page-indexed rather than name-indexed, meaning that to find your ancestors you had to check through pages of records and see if your ancestor was somewhere on the image. The original documents are held by the General Register Office (GRO). By using the information found within this index, you can request the original document of your ancestor’s birth online. You will need to register with the GRO site and pay a small fee.

Search tips

Remember to double check the birth quarter, district, and country to make sure you have the right person before you order the original document. However, in some cases, you may need to order more than one before you find the right person.

The registration month will not always be the same as the individual’s birth month. For various reasons, a gap sometimes occurred between the time of birth of the time of registration of the birth.

Once you find your ancestor, search Findmypast’s extensive collection of parish records. Most parish records are organised by county.