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North of Ireland Family History Society Branch Notes 10th June

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									                  North of Ireland Family History Society
                                                 Branch Notes 10th June, 2009

            These notes accompany the Society and Branch Constitutions as a guide to the running of the Society.
                         It is hoped that they will be particularly helpful for newly formed Branches.
                                                               ~~~

Objects of the Society

                  To promote and encourage the public and personal study of world-wide family history,
                  genealogy, heraldry and local history with particular reference to the North of Ireland.

In furtherance of the above Objects the Society shall have the following aims:
     (a) to hold lectures and discussions and to organise research visits for Society members and members of the public;
     (b) to receive, hold and maintain a library of printed works and other materials for use by Society members and members
         of the public;
     (c) to receive, preserve, transcribe or publish source materials, including documents and monumental inscriptions, such
         materials to remain the property of the Society except where otherwise agreed in writing;
     (d) to work in conjunction with similar societies and supportive bodies such as churches, libraries, record offices and
         educational establishments;
     (e) to publish the Journal “North Irish Roots”.
The income and property of the Society shall be applied solely towards the promotion of the Objects.

                                                                    ~~~

Organisation of the Society
The Society had its beginnings in a family history group formed in Bangor in 1979 and chaired by (John) Aiken McClelland
(the Librarian/Archivist at the Ulster Folk and Transport Museum; he died in 1981), who was followed by (George) Brendan
Adams (a dialectologist at the Ulster Folk and Transport Museum; he died in 1982) and then David Honneyman (a lecturer at
Stranmillis College). Over the years, as the interest in genealogy has grown, the group has expanded by creating a dozen or so
other Branches in the North of Ireland to form the Society, which now has hundreds of members including many overseas.
Many members have worked hard to develop the Society under the leadership of a succession of dedicated Presidents: Dr
David Honneyman [1982-1983 & 1992-1994], Rev Dr Hugh Hezlett [1983-1984], Mr Samuel Bracegirdle [1994-1997], Mr
John Bassett [1997-2002] and Mr Randal Gill [1984-1992 and since 2002].




The Society is a voluntary, non profit making organisation, depending on the financial support of amateurs interested in Family
History and volunteer effort in running the Society. The Society is not a Research Agency, although we like to put people in
contact with one another. The Society has registered charitable status, number XR22524.

The Society is a member of the following organisations: The Federation of Family History Societies, The Federation of Ulster
Local Studies and The Council for Irish Genealogical Organisations. The Society is a corporate member of the Ulster-Scots
Heritage Council and a friend of The Somme Association.

Although the Society’s postal address is North of Ireland Family History Society, c/o Graduate School of Education, 69
University Street, Belfast, BT7 1HL, Northern Ireland, its Office and Research Library are at the Mount Masonic Centre at 45
Park Avenue, Belfast, BT4 1PU.

Branches
The Society consists of a number of geographically based Branches in the North of Ireland; at present these are:
        Ballymena | Belfast | Coleraine | Fermanagh | Killyleagh | Larne | Lisburn | Newtownabbey | North Down and Ards |
        Omagh | Portadown | Warrenpoint | it is hoped that Foyle will be formally adopted as a new Branch.
     North of Ireland Family History Society, c/o Graduate School of Education, 69 University Street, Belfast, BT7 1HL, Northern Ireland.
      http://www.nifhs.org                                          1/8                                              nquire@nifhs.org
Membership
There are two classes of membership: Branch Membership and Associate Membership. Within these there is a category called
Joint Membership and Council may confer Honorary Membership.

Branch Membership
All Branch Members are members of the Society and have voting rights at general meetings of the Branch and of the Society.
They receive the Society’s journal, North Irish Roots, and may attend the business and social meetings of all of the Branches
and may use the Research Library and enjoy such other benefits as the Society may from time to time provide. Branch
Members pay an annual membership fee to their Branch; the fee consists of two parts: the capitation fee, which is set by and
remitted to the Society for its expenses, and the rest, which is set by and retained by the Branch for its own expenses. The
capitation fee covers the cost of the journal and also the Society’s running costs, including insurance and the cost of its
premises.

Associate Membership
In addition, there are Associate Members, who do not belong to any Branch and who have no voting rights. These are
typically those who are overseas or are not living near a Branch. They receive the Society’s journal, North Irish Roots, and
may use the Research Library and enjoy such other benefits as the Society may from time to time provide. Associate Members
pay an annual membership fee, which is set by and paid to the Society.

Joint Membership
Two members, whether Branch or Associate, who live at the same address, may have Joint Membership. They pay a smaller
annual fee but receive only one copy of each issue of the journal between them.

Honorary Membership
Council may confer Honorary Membership upon a member, whether Branch or Associate, who has made an outstanding
contribution to the Objects of the Society. An Honorary Member pays no annual membership fee and no capitation fee is
payable for an Honorary Member.

Council
The Society is run by the Council, all the Officers and Members of which are Charity Trustees for the purposes of the Charities
Act (Northern Ireland) 2008. The Statutory Offices (with the current office holders) are:
                                       President                    Randal Gill
                                       Chairperson                  Ann Robinson
                                       General Secretary            Georgie Siberry (acting)
                                       Membership Secretary         Rosemary Sibbett
                                       Treasurer                    Robert Guthrie
The other Offices, decided from time to time by Council (with the current office holders) are:
  Vice-President                       Rosemary Sibbett            Journal Editor                     Michael McKeag
                                                  c
  Vice-Chairperson                     Michael M Keag              Data Protection Officer            Anne Johnston
  Office/Social Secretary              Georgie Siberry             Development & Publicity Officer Noel Redmond
  Minutes Secretary                    (vacant)                    Project Officer                    Anne Johnston
  Assistant Membership Secretary Sandra Ardis                      Deputy Project Officer             Doreen Walker
  Assistant Minutes Secretary          Pat Allen                   C.I.G.O. Representatives           Randal Gill,
  Librarian                            Randal Gill                                                    Rob Davison
  Webmaster                            Caryl Sibbett               F.F.H.S. Representative            Rob Davison
In addition there are a number of co-opted volunteers, who at present are:
  Journal Dispatch Officer             David Deane
  Postal Enquiries                     Heather Magowan
  E-mail Queries                       Cyndy Cotton
  Members’ Interests                   Cyndy Cotton
  Editorial Team                       Ian Forsyth, Randal Gill, Flora Jackson, John Jackson, Noelle M cCavana, Syl Maguire
Under the Society Constitution, the Chairperson, the Secretary and the Treasurer of each Branch serve ex officio as Members
of Council. The Officers of the Society are elected each year at the Annual General Meeting in May. In addition Council may
appoint Members of the Society to Council and may appoint Officers from the Members of Council.

The main legal guideline for the Society and Branches is that they act in accordance with the Charities Act (Northern Ireland)
2008, the Society Constitution and the Branch Constitution.
     North of Ireland Family History Society, c/o Graduate School of Education, 69 University Street, Belfast, BT7 1HL, Northern Ireland.
      http://www.nifhs.org                                          2/8                                              nquire@nifhs.org
The following notes are designed to help       each Branch and the Officers and Members of its Committee understand their rôles
and responsibilities and to plan activities.   The notes cover:
Formation of a Branch                          Other Members of the Committee         Record Repositories
N.I.F.H.S. as a Charity                        Dissolution of the Branch              N.I.F.H.S. Research Library
Chairperson                                    Dissolution of the Society             N.I.F.H.S. Journal: North Irish Roots
Secretary                                      Meetings                               N.I.F.H.S. Website: http://www.nifhs.org
Treasurer                                      Transcriptions and Publications        N.I.F.H.S. Contacts

Formation of a Branch
Anyone wishing to form a new Branch should first discuss the matter with the Development & Publicity Officer or some
other Member of Council of the Society. The Society is willing to assist by providing information and advice, helping with
any initial meeting, for example by providing brochures, display stands and speakers, and helping with subsequent meetings by
suggesting possible activities and speakers. However it is important that there are sufficient local people prepared to undertake
the organisation of the Branch.

Often a local library is willing to provide a venue for at least an initial meeting and libraries and the local press are good places
to advertise such a meeting. Council may also be able to suggest other people in the area who might be interested and it will
be happy to arrange for a speaker to address the meeting and explain how the Society works and what it offers. The initial
meeting enables the organisers to gauge the level of interest and the readiness of potential members to form a committee. If
these are sufficient, a date, time and venue for an Inaugural General Meeting should be decided. The opportunity can be
taken to discuss a suitable venue and date and time for subsequent monthly meetings and to solicit suggestions for speakers
and activities for those meetings.

At this Inaugural General Meeting, a Committee consisting of officers (at least a Chairperson, a Secretary and a Treasurer)
and other members should be elected, the Branch Constitution should be adopted (and sent to Council for ratification, along
with the names and contact details of the Officers), membership fees decided and membership sought. Council will be happy
to suggest a speaker for the meeting. Thereafter it is up to the Committee to organise a programme of meetings; indeed, the
organisers may already have done much of this following the initial meeting.

Once Council has ratified the Branch Constitution, the Branch will be part of the Society, as will its members once their details
and capitation fees have been forwarded to Council. At present the capitation fees are £8 per member or £13 for two members
living in the same household; in addition Council can award Honorary Membership to those who have performed exceptional
service to the Society and Honorary Members pay no subscription and no capitation fees have to be paid for them.

It is up to each Branch to set its annual membership fees for members other than Honorary Members. In doing so, the
Committee should consider the cost of the hire of the venue, the provision of refreshments, the honoraria and any expenses for
speakers, the cost of publicity for the Branch and the need to build up some reserves (for example to purchase items such as a
projector or to underwrite the publication of a book or events such as a summer outing or a Christmas dinner). As a guide, at
present the annual subscriptions in the Belfast Branch are £20 per member or £25 for two members living in the same
household, i.e. the capitation fee plus £12; other Branches have slightly lower subscriptions.

N.I.F.H.S. as a Charity
The Society has charitable status (number XR22524) for tax purposes at present and, under the Charities Act (Northern
Ireland) 2008, will register as a charity with the new N.I. Charity Commission when registration opens, probably early in 2010.
The Chairperson, Secretary and Treasurer of each Branch will, ex officio, be Members of Council and thus Charity Trustees
and thus responsible for ensuring that the Society discharges its duties as a Registered Charity. The following notes will bring
to the attention of those Officers their responsibilities. These are chiefly to ensure the financial probity of the Branch and to
ensure that annual reports to the Charity Commission are properly made. They also include those Officers’ responsibilities as
Trustees should the Branch or the Society be wound up.

In addition the Officers (particularly the Treasurer) of each Branch should note that Clause 19 of the Act states that
         (1) The fact that a charity is registered shall be stated in legible characters—
                    (a) in all notices, advertisements and other documents issued by or on behalf of the charity and soliciting money or other
                    property for the benefit of the charity;
                    (b) in all bills of exchange, promissory notes, endorsements, cheques and orders for money or goods purporting to be
                    signed on behalf of the charity; and
                    (c) in all bills rendered by it and in all its invoices, receipts and letters of credit.
         (2) Subsection (1)(a) has effect whether the solicitation is express or implied, and whether the money or other property is to be given
         for any consideration or not.
         (3) Any person who issues or authorises the issue of any document falling within paragraph (a) or (c) of subsection (1) which does not
         contain the statement required by that subsection, is guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding
         level 3 on the standard scale.
         (4) Any person who signs any document falling within paragraph (b) of subsection (1) which does not contain the statement required
         by that subsection, is guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding level 3 on the standard scale.
Perhaps it would be wise to obtain – and use – a rubber stamp once the Society becomes a registered charity.
      North of Ireland Family History Society, c/o Graduate School of Education, 69 University Street, Belfast, BT7 1HL, Northern Ireland.
       http://www.nifhs.org                                          3/8                                              nquire@nifhs.org
Chairperson
The Chairperson takes overall responsibility for the efficient running of the Branch and chairs meetings of the Branch and its
Committee. The Chairperson represents the Branch at meetings of Council.

Of particular importance is the Annual General Meeting: clause 27 of the Branch Constitution states:
         The Committee shall prepare in respect of each financial year an annual report on the activities of the Branch during that year.
and sub-clause (1) of clause 9 of the Branch Constitution states:
         An annual general meeting shall be held each year during April. At this meeting the annual report and the statement of accounts for
         the financial year ending 31st March and the report of the auditor or independent examiner must be presented for adoption. Following
         the annual general meeting, the statement of accounts and the report of the independent examiner must be promptly sent to the
         Treasurer of the Society and the annual report must be promptly sent to the General Secretary of the Society in time for the Society’s
         annual general meeting in May.


Secretary
The Secretary is responsible for correspondence, including that connected with the programme for the year (including booking
venues and issuing invitations to speakers, confirming detailed arrangements with them and thanking them). As soon as the
programme for the year has been finalised, it should be sent to the Society’s Webmaster and Journal Editor as well as to the
members of the Branch; they should also be informed of any subsequent amendments. The Secretary also represents the
Branch at meetings of Council.

The Secretary is responsible for keeping minutes: clause 23 of the Branch Constitution states:
         The Committee shall keep minutes of all:
         (1) appointments of Officers and Members of the Committee made by the Committee;
         (2) proceedings at general meetings of the Branch;
         (3) meetings of the Committee and sub-committees of the Committee including:
                   • the names of the Members of the Committee present at the meeting;
                   • the decisions made at the meetings; and
                   • where appropriate the reasons for the decisions.
Each Branch should decide whether the Secretary should also record the proceedings and attendance at other business meetings
of the Branch.

Sub-clause (1) of clause 9 of the Branch Constitution states:
         An annual general meeting shall be held each year during April. ... Following the annual general meeting, … the annual report must
         be promptly sent to the General Secretary of the Society in time for the Society’s annual general meeting in May.


Treasurer
The Treasurer is responsible for maintaining the Branch’s accounts, including the Branch’s bank accounts. When a bank
account is opened it is normal for it to require the signatures of any two of three Officers of the Branch to operate the account –
often the three Officers will be the Treasurer, the Secretary and the Chairperson. When there is a change of Officer, typically
following the annual general meeting, the bank must be promptly informed of the change of signatories. The Treasurer also
represents the Branch at meetings of Council.

A main task of the Treasurer is to enrol the members each year: each member should complete a membership form and pay the
required membership fee. Sub-clause (2) of clause 7 of the Branch Constitution states
         The Branch Treasurer shall promptly send the Membership Secretary of the Society particulars of each member together with that
         member’s capitation fee (except that no capitation fee is payable for those awarded Honorary Membership by the Society). …
The Society’s Membership Secretary can provide the Branch with a draft membership form which should be edited to take
account of the needs of the Branch.

The Treasurer must also deal with all receipts and expenditure. All transactions must be properly recorded in such a way that
statements of accounts can be drawn up and the accounts can be independently audited. The Treasurer should also maintain a
record of the Branch’s assets and liabilities and should inform the Society Treasurer if any assets need to be covered by the
Society’s insurance policy. The Society’s Treasurer may be consulted if there is any doubt about how best to record these
transactions.

Clauses 24, 25 and 26 of the Branch’s Constitution are specific about the Duty to keep Accounting Records:
         (1) The Committee shall keep accounting records that are sufficient to show and explain all the Branch’s transactions and which are
         such as to disclose at any time, with reasonable accuracy, the financial position of the Branch at that time and enable the Committee
         to ensure that, where any statements of accounts are prepared by them, those statements of accounts comply with the requirements
         of regulations.
         (2) The accounting records shall in particular contain entries showing from day to day all sums of money received and expended by
         the Branch, and the matters in respect of which the receipt and expenditure take place, and a record of the assets and liabilities of the
         Branch.
         (3) The Committee shall preserve any accounting records made for the purposes of this clause in respect of the Branch for at least 6
         years from the end of the financial year to which such records relate.


     North of Ireland Family History Society, c/o Graduate School of Education, 69 University Street, Belfast, BT7 1HL, Northern Ireland.
      http://www.nifhs.org                                          4/8                                              nquire@nifhs.org
and the Annual Statements of Accounts:
         (1) The Committee shall prepare in respect of each financial year of the Branch a statement of accounts complying with such
         requirements as to its form and contents as may be prescribed by current regulations. Where a Branch’s gross income in any
         financial year does not exceed £100,000 or such other amount as may be determined by the Charity Commission, the Committee
         may, in respect of that year, elect to prepare a receipts and payments account and a statement of assets and liabilities, instead of a
         statement of accounts.
         (2) The Committee shall preserve any statement of accounts for at least 6 years from the end of the financial year to which any such
         statement relates.

and the Annual Examination of Branch Accounts:
         The Committee shall arrange for the Branch’s annual statement of accounts to be audited. If the Branch’s gross income in that year
         does not exceed £100,000 in a financial year or such other amount as may be determined by the Charity Commission, the accounts
         for that year shall, at the election of the Committee, be examined by an independent examiner, that is to say an independent person
         who is reasonably believed by the Committee to have the requisite ability and practical experience to carry out a competent
         examination of the accounts.

If the Treasurer is unsure how best to discharge these duties, advice should be sought from the Treasurer of the Society.

Sub-clause (1) of clause 9 of the Branch’s Constitution states:
         An annual general meeting shall be held each year during April. At this meeting … the statement of accounts for the financial year
         ending 31st March and the report of the auditor or independent examiner must be presented for adoption. Following the annual
         general meeting, the statement of accounts and the report of the independent examiner must be promptly sent to the Treasurer of the
         Society … in time for the Society’s annual general meeting in May.

Council arranges insurance each year but, in the unlikely event that a Branch has extra responsibilities that are not covered by
the Society’s policy, perhaps because it has its own premises or employees, then the Branch should arrange suitable insurance.

Other Members of the Committee
The Branch is at liberty to appoint other, non-statutory officers, who may be allotted specific duties.

All members of the Committee are jointly responsible for the smooth running of the Branch, including the planning and
organising of meetings, whether general, business or social, and other events.

                                                                      ~~~

Dissolution of the Branch
Clause 5 of the Branch Constitution spells out the procedure to be adopted if a Branch is to be dissolved:
         (1) If the members resolve to dissolve the Branch, or if the Council of the Society resolves that the Branch be dissolved, the Members
         of the Committee shall remain in office as Branch Trustees and be responsible for winding up the affairs of the Branch in accordance
         with this clause.
         (2) The Branch Trustees must notify the Chairperson of the Society promptly that the Branch has been dissolved.
         (3) The Branch Trustees must collect in all the assets of the Branch and must pay or make provision for all the liabilities of the Branch.
         (4) The Branch Trustees must transfer any remaining property or money to the Treasurer of the Society.
         (5) In no circumstances shall the net assets of the Branch be paid to or distributed among the members of the Branch.
         (6) The Branch Trustees must send the Treasurer of the Society the Branch’s final statement of accounts and report of the
         independent examiner, together with all records required under Clauses 24 and 25 for the previous six years.
         (7) The Branch Trustees must send the Secretary of the Society the final report of the Branch.


Dissolution of the Society
Clause 5 of the Society Constitution spells out the procedure to be adopted if the Society is to be dissolved:
         (1) If the members resolve to dissolve the Society the Members of Council shall remain in office as Society Trustees and be
         responsible for winding up the affairs of the Society in accordance with this clause.
         (2) The Society Trustees must collect in all the assets of the Society and must pay or make provision for all the liabilities of the
         Society.
         (3) The Society Trustees must apply any remaining property or money:
                     (a) directly for the Objects;
                     (b) by transfer to any charity or charities for purposes the same as or similar to the Charity;
                     (c) in such other manner as the Charity Commission for Northern Ireland (―the Commission‖) may approve in writing in
                     advance.
         (4) The members may pass a resolution before or at the same time as the resolution to dissolve the Charity specifying the manner in
         which the Society Trustees are to apply the remaining property or assets of the Charity and the Society Trustees must comply with the
         resolution if it is consistent with paragraphs (a)–(c) inclusive in sub-clause (3) above.
         (5) In no circumstances shall the net assets of the Society be paid to or distributed among the members of the Society.
         (6) The Society Trustees must notify the Commission promptly that the Charity has been dissolved. If the Society Trustees are
         obliged to send the Charity’s accounts to the Commission for the accounting period which ended before its dissolution, they must
         send the Commission the Charity’s final accounts.


                                                                      ~~~

     North of Ireland Family History Society, c/o Graduate School of Education, 69 University Street, Belfast, BT7 1HL, Northern Ireland.
      http://www.nifhs.org                                          5/8                                              nquire@nifhs.org
Meetings
The usual pattern in Branches is to have a meeting once a month, excluding July and August. A Branch should avoid meeting
on the second Wednesday of the month because that is when the Society’s Council (in full or just the Officers) meets at 7:30
p.m. at 45, Park Avenue, Belfast. The dates of Branch meetings can be seen on the Society’s website at www.nifhs.org.

The usual pattern is to hold a Business Meeting each month: often there will be a talk by a visiting speaker or a member of the
Branch or else there will be a workshop to help the members advance their research. Often the December meeting is a Social
Meeting: perhaps a party or dinner; and the June meeting often takes the form of an outing to places of interest, followed by a
meal. April is when a Branch holds its Annual General Meeting, perhaps in conjunction with a Business Meeting, before the
Society’s Annual General Meeting in May. The website is also a useful source of ideas for speakers and activities.

Transcriptions and Publications
There is a longstanding and very active group of members from different Branches who meet on Wednesday mornings in the
Society’s Research Library to transcribe records from churches, graveyards, newspapers and other sources. In addition
members of a number of Branches have published a number of transcriptions as books, microfiches, CDs and web pages.
However the material is published, a copy should be deposited in the Society’s Research Library.

Where the information is not already in the public domain it is important that a written agreement is made with the owners of
the material, stating exactly what forms of publication are acceptable. Thus a very restrictive agreement for the transcription of
a Church’s marriage registers might state that only three printed copies should exist, one for the Church and one for the
Society’s Research Library and one for the Public Record Office of Northern Ireland; on the other hand an agreement might
specify that the material can be printed and sold and also placed on the World Wide Web and accessed by subscription - in
such a case the agreement should state how the proceeds should be distributed. A copy of the agreement should be filed in the
Society’s Office in case queries should subsequently arise. Where no such written agreement is filed, the Society’s
Constitution states that the work is deemed to belong solely to the Society, which has the right to make whatever use of it is
agreed by Council. A form for this purpose is available from the Project Officer or Deputy Project Officer.

Transcriptions or other material might be published as a book, in which case the Branch may apply to Council for a loan to be
repaid from the sale of the books. The Branch has to acquire its own set of International Standard Book Numbers
<http://www.isbn.nielsenbook.co.uk/> and the Branch, or its publisher, must, under the Legal Deposit Libraries Act 2003,
deposit one copy with the British Library’s Legal Deposit Office <http://www.bl.uk/aboutus/stratpolprog/legaldep/> and, if
required, five copies with the Agency for the Legal Deposit Libraries <http://www.legaldeposit.org.uk/index.html>, which
sends them to the Bodleian Library at Oxford University, the Cambridge University Library, the Library of Trinity College,
Dublin, the National Library of Wales and the National Library of Scotland. As there is no legal deposit library in Northern
Ireland, those who publish here are asked to deposit a copy with the Northern Ireland Publications Resource
<http://www.nibooks.org/>, which aims to acquire and preserve every book, pamphlet, periodical and report published in
Northern Ireland since January 2000 and which can supply a free copy of the booklet Publishing for Success.

                                                                                                                    ....




Record Repositories
Other activities of Branches are visits to record repositories such as the Public Record Office and General Register Office of
Northern Ireland and the various record offices in Dublin, such as the General Register Office, the Dublin City Archives, the
National Library of Ireland and the National Archives – there are also a number of more specialised archives - thanks to Rob
Davison for much of the following information. To plan a research trip to Dublin, check the websites of the places you want to
visit for up to date details and for information about the records they hold as the following notes list only the main records:
some of the places require you to bring or obtain a reader’s card, which generally requires some personal identification such as
a passport or driver’s licence and may need a passport size photograph. Generally record offices do not allow the use of pens
but provide pencils. People over 65 qualify for a Senior Citizen SmartPass for free travel by train to Dublin; otherwise check
the Translink website http://www.translink.co.uk/ for special offers for cheap travel – this generally has to be booked online at
least three days in advance. Remember to take Euro although it can be cheaper to get money from a hole in the wall in Dublin.

Public Record Office of Northern Ireland [P.R.O.N.I.], 66 Balmoral Avenue, Belfast, BT9 6NY; 028 9025 5905;
http://www.proni.gov.uk; Mon – Wed & Fri 9 – 4.45, Thu 10 – 8:45, the latest time for ordering documents is 4:15 or Thu
     North of Ireland Family History Society, c/o Graduate School of Education, 69 University Street, Belfast, BT7 1HL, Northern Ireland.
      http://www.nifhs.org                                          6/8                                              nquire@nifhs.org
6:30. The Search Room contains * catalogues, guides and indexes, * computerised wills database, * Irish Emigration Database
of the Centre for Migration Studies, * Findmypast and Irish Origins websites subscribed to by P.R.O.N.I. The Self–Service
Microfilm Room contains * Church records, * 1901 Census, * Index to the civil registers of births, * Place name and personal
names index to the Registry of Deeds, * Tithe Applotment books, * Abstracts of the 1858-1900 wills, * other popular sources
available on microfilm or microfiche. The website contains the original signatures and addresses of the 237,368 men who, on
28th September 1912, signed the Ulster Covenant, and of 234,046 women who signed the parallel Declaration; also
Freeholders’ Records, mainly from electoral registers and poll books; also the first phase of a Will Calendars project to index
and digitise all the early wills that were proved in the District Probate Registries of Armagh, Belfast and Londonderry from
1858 to c.1900; also Name Search – the index to pre-1858 wills which are to be found in various collections in PRONI, and a
selection of diocesan will indexes - forthcoming indexes will include the surviving fragments of the 1740 and the 1766
religious census returns.

General Register Office of Northern Ireland, Oxford House, 49-55 Chichester Street, Belfast, BT1 4HL; 028 9025 2000;
http://www.groni.gov.uk; open Mon – Fri 9:30 – 4 with limitations; on arrival you will be asked to show some photographic
identification; you are advised to book an appointment at least 6 weeks in advance; two types of search are available: Assisted
Search – a general search of records assisted by members of G.R.O. staff for any period of years and any number of entries and
the cost of this service is £26.00 per hour; Index Search - computerised indexes are available for searching at a cost of £12.00
for a total of 6 hours or part thereof and this cost includes 4 verifications of entries by staff, with the option of further
verifications at £3.00 each - an index search is when you can see the index only, if verification is requested a member of staff
will look up the register and read the entry to you. These indexes cover non-Roman Catholic marriages from 1845 – 1863 and
all births, marriages and deaths from 1864; however the G.R.O. only holds marriage registers from 1922 onwards. Copies of
certificates relating to any entries traced may be purchased at a cost of £6.00 each but cannot be provided immediately. The
certificates can either be collected from the G.R.O. or posted to the applicant. If an application is received before 2.30pm, and
an additional priority fee of £17.00 is paid, the certificate will be provided within 1 hour of application.

At http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/archon/ some two dozen Northern Irish archive repositories are listed, e.g.:
Wesley Historical Society, Edgehill College, 9 Lennoxvale, Belfast, BT9 5BY; open Thu mornings. The Honorary Archivist
            is the Rev. Robin Roddie, Robin@Roddie.plus.com.
Presbyterian Historical Society of Ireland, Church House, Fisherwick Place, Belfast, BT1 6DW; the Library is in Room 218
            on the 2nd floor; http://www.presbyterianhistoryireland.com/; open Tue – Thu 10 – 12:30 & 1:30 – 4. The
            Librarian is Jennifer Dickson. Its genealogical correspondence is now in the N.I.F.H.S. Research Library.
Belfast Central Library, Royal Avenue, Belfast, BT1 1EA; 028 9050 9150; http://www.ni-libraries.net/libraries/; open Mon –
            Thu 9 – 8, Fri 9 – 5:30, Sat 9 – 4:30. The Newspaper Library is Ground Floor, Library Street; 028 9050 9117.
Linen Hall Library, 17 Donegall Square North, Belfast, BT1 5GB; 028 9032 1707; http://www.linenhall.com; open Mon –
            Wed & Fri 9:30 – 5:30, Thu 9:30 – 7, Sat 9:30 – 4.

General Register Office of Ireland, 3rd Floor, Block 7, Irish Life Centre, Lower Abbey Street, Dublin 1;
http://www.groireland.ie; open Mon – Fri 9:30 - 4:30; search fees are €2 for a specific search covering a maximum of 5 years
or €20 for an all day general search covering any number of years; a photocopy costs €4.00. Indexes available for inspection
are * Births, Marriages and Deaths registered throughout Ireland from 1864 to 1921 and in the Republic of Ireland from 1922
onwards * Non-Roman Catholic Marriages registered throughout Ireland between 1 st April 1845 and 31st December 1863
inclusive * Legal Domestic Adoptions registered in the Republic of Ireland from 10th July, 1953 onwards. Other registers,
such as births and deaths at sea, are at Roscommon.

Dublin     City     Archives,     1st    Floor,   138-144     Pearse    Street,    Dublin     2;    +353     1    674     4999;
http://www.dublincity.ie/RecreationandCulture/libraries/Heritage%20and%20History/Dublin%20City%20Archives; open Mon
– Thu 10 - 8 and Fri & Sat -10 to 5; complete an application form and produce photographic identification for a three year
Research Card; there is a restaurant on the same floor. The principal sources for family history research are: * Church records
including indexes to Baptisms, Marriages and Burials from a number of Dublin parish registers of the 18th and 19th centuries.
* Land records including Griffith’s Valuation 1848-1862. * Civil and Census records including Indexes of Births, Marriages
and Deaths to the 1950s (with some gaps) from the General Register Office Dublin. * Occupational and biographical records,
etcetera.

National Library of Ireland, Kildare Street, Dublin 2; +353 1 603 0200; http://www.nli.ie; the Main Reading Room is open
Mon - Wed: 9.30 - 9, Thu & Fri: 9.30 - 5, Saturday: 9.30 - 1; a Reader’s Ticket may be obtained by completing an application
form, which can be downloaded from the website, and producing photographic identification and two passport size
photographs, which may be obtained in the Library’s shop – a separate Ticket is required to consult manuscripts - a Reader's
Ticket is not required to access the exhibition areas, visit the café, or to use the Genealogy Advisory Service - temporary
badges are issued to those wishing to consult newspapers, parish registers on microfilm or any other microform; there is a café
on the ground floor. The Library's Genealogy Advisory Service offers advice on records which are available in the Library
and elsewhere, instructions on how to access them and suggestions on how to use them. This service is available free to
personal callers. The Library holds microfilm copies of the registers of most Roman Catholic parishes in Ireland for the years
up to 1880 and in some cases to 1900; it has the Tithe Applotment Books and Griffith's Valuation and directories, newspapers,
estate records, printed family histories, publications of local history societies and others.
     North of Ireland Family History Society, c/o Graduate School of Education, 69 University Street, Belfast, BT7 1HL, Northern Ireland.
      http://www.nifhs.org                                          7/8                                              nquire@nifhs.org
National Archives, Bishop Street, Dublin 8; +353 1 407 2300; http://www.nationalarchives.ie; open Mon – Fri 10 - 5 but
documents must be ordered by 3:15 and will not be produced between 12:30 and 1:30; need a Reader’s Ticket on production of
photographic identification – an application form can be downloaded from the website. The records available in the Reading
Room include: * Census returns - census online * Tithe Applotment Books and the Primary (Griffith) Valuation * Wills and
testamentary records * Ireland-Australia transportation records (1791–1853) * Estate records * Private source records * Parish
records and marriage licences * Crown and Peace records.

At http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/archon/ 77 or so Republic of Ireland archive repositories are listed, including the
following; contact them in advance to find out whether they can provide the information that you seek.
Garda Museum & Archives, Record Tower, Dublin Castle; +353 1 666 9998;
             http://www.garda.ie/Controller.aspx?Page=72&Lang=1; open Mon – Fri 9 – 5.
Mercer Library of the Royal College of Surgeons of Ireland, Mercer Street Lower, Dublin 2; +353 1 402 2407;
             http://www.rcsi.ie/; open Mon – Fri 9:15 - 9:15, Sat 9:15 - 4:45.
Irish Railway Record Society Library, Record Society Building, Heuston Station, Dublin 8;
             http://www.irrs.ie; open Tuesdays 8 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Probate Office, 1st Floor, Phoenix House, 15/24 Phoenix Street North, Smithfield, Dublin 7; +353 1 888 6174/6728;
             http://www.courts.ie; open Mon- Fri 10:30 – 4:30.
Land Registry, Chancery Street, Dublin 7; +353 1 670 7500;
             http://www.landregistry.ie/eng/; open Mon – Fri 10:30 – 4:30.
Registry of Deeds, Henrietta Street, Dublin 1; +353 1 804 8417;
             http://www.landregistry.ie/eng/; open Mon – Fri 10:30 – 4:30.
Valuation Office, Irish Life Centre, Abbey Street Lower, Dublin 1; +353 1 817 1000;
             http://www.valoff.ie; open Mon – Fri 9:15 – 4:30.
Representative Church Body Library of the Church of Ireland, Braemor Park, Churchtown, Dublin 14; +353 1 492 3979;
             http://www.library.ireland.anglican.org/; open Mon – Fri 9:30 – 1 and 2 – 5.

N.I.F.H.S. Research Library
All members are encouraged to visit the Society’s Research Library, which has an extensive collection of books, journals,
transcriptions, maps, directories, CDs, genealogies and other material, some of which is not available anywhere else. The
Research Library and the Society Office are located in two rooms within the Mount Masonic Centre at 45 Park Avenue,
Belfast, BT4 1PU. The Research Library and Office are on the upper floor: turn right at the top of the stairs and the rooms are
on the right hand side of the corridor. The Research Library is open on Wednesday mornings from 10:30 to 12:30 and each
Branch has a key; note, however, that the building is open from 11:30 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. but not during weekday afternoons
from 3:30 to 6:30, nor is it open on Sundays. For more information see http://www.nifhs.org/rescentre.htm where there is a
partial online catalogue.

N.I.F.H.S. Journal: North Irish Roots
All members are encouraged to contribute to the Society’s twice yearly journal, North Irish Roots. This might be an article or
a brief note or a query or a list of names being researched. From time to time the Belfast Branch organises a competition for
all members of the Society – it takes the form of writing an article on some topic; prizes are awarded and a selection of articles
are published in the journal. The journal’s International Standard Serial Number is ISSN 0264-9217.

N.I.F.H.S. Website: http://www.nifhs.org
The website should be consulted for information on the Society, the Branches, the Research Library, Publications and so on. It
relies on Members and Branches informing the Webmaster to keep the information up to date. Several Branches have their
own websites, to which links are provided, or Branches may have their own pages on the Society’s website.

N.I.F.H.S. Contacts
Mail address: North of Ireland Family History Society, c/o Q.U.B. School of Education, 69 University Street, Belfast BT7 1HL.
The Society’s Office and Research Library are at the Mount Masonic Centre, 45 Park Avenue, Belfast, BT4 1PU.
The Society uses the following e-mail addresses to manage correspondence:
  Members asking about their membership:                                                              membership@nifhs.org
  Members adding or amending their member's interests:                                                membership@nifhs.org
  Members requesting Lookups:                                                                             memenq@nifhs.org
  Members submitting articles or other material for the Journal North Irish Roots:                           nroots@nifhs.org
  Anyone wanting to be put in contact with a member who has published member's interests on the website: memint@nifhs.org
  Anyone wishing to comment on the website:                                                                    web@nifhs.org
  Anyone making a general enquiry, e.g. Joining, Research Centre, etc:                                       nquire@nifhs.org

     North of Ireland Family History Society, c/o Graduate School of Education, 69 University Street, Belfast, BT7 1HL, Northern Ireland.
      http://www.nifhs.org                                          8/8                                              nquire@nifhs.org

								
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