Find your past with a subscription to Findmypast, an online genealogy platform which uncovers family history with the help of billions of records.

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Findmypast is a searchable online archive of over 13 billion records featuring parish and school records, census and migration records, and military collections from around the world.

Library subscriptions are available to either the British or World editions. In addition to this, the 1921 Census is available as an add-on to either collection. Find out more about the different editions here.

Why should libraries subscribe to Findmypast?

As well as having  the largest collection of British and Irish parish records online, many unique to Findmypast, there are other collections that are exclusive  to this resource including:

  • 1921 Census (available as an add-on subscription)
  • British in India Collection (in Findmypast World)
  • Prisoners of War 1715-1945
  • National School Admission Registers & Log-Books 1870-1914
  • England & Wales, Electoral Registers 1832-1932

In addition to records from Britain, the World edition also includes records from the Republic of Ireland, Australia, Papua New Guinea, The United States and Canada.

How can your library access the Findmypast 1921 Census?

The 1921 Census of England and Wales captures the details of over 38 million people, and is now available as an add-on collection for Findmypast library subscribers. Learn more here.

Looking for the perfect complement to Findmypast? Why not take a look at the British Newspaper Archive, also available through JCS.


  • World Edition: provides access to over 13 billion records from Britain, Republic of Ireland,  Australia, New Zealand, The United States, and Canada and is currently the fastest growing archive available. Findmypast contains the largest collection of Irish records anywhere online.
  • Britain Edition: provides access to millions of records from England, Scotland and Wales
  • 1921 Census of England and Wales: An add-on subscription for Findmypast library subscribers and exclusive to Findmypast until end of 2025


“Findmypast is one of our most popular online resources…everyone at JCS made the transition from our previous supplier seamless and trouble-free, with their efficient, helpful and friendly service.”

Helen Towers, Reader Development and Stock Manager, Cumbria Library Service


“We were delighted to subscribe to Findmypast with the savings made possible by the JCS Welsh Libraries consortium…and it’s now our most popular family history resource”

Hywel Jones, Gwynedd Library Service


“We were already subscribing to Findmypast at the National Library and found it to be a very popular resource. When JCS suggested the Welsh libraries form a buying group we were quick to respond so we could benefit from the consortium discount. The JCS team was extremely helpful and made the whole process simple and straightforward.”

Robert Lacey, Acquisitions Librarian, National Library of Wales

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To find out more about how the different access options work please see our General Access Information.

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What is the 1939 Register?

The 1939 Register is the only surviving overview of the civil population of England and Wales spanning  1921-1951. This is because the 1931 census was destroyed during an air raid and the 1941 census was never taken.

What information is listed in the 1939 Register?

The 1939 Register contains names, dates of birth, addresses, occupations, marital statuses and occupations of more than 40 million people.

Why are some records in the 1939 Register officially closed?

Individuals’ records remain closed for 100 years from their date of birth, known as the 100-year rule. Records remain closed for people born less than 100 years ago unless proof of death is verified. As more records become open after the allotted time passes, more records will become available to search and view online at Findmypast.

How do I research my family history?

Family history researchers can click on ‘My Family Tree’ at the top of the website, then clicking on ‘Create a Tree’.

Your tree will begin with you as the tree owner. You can then start to add names to your tree by clicking on Add Partner, Add Child, Add Mother/Father or Add Sibling. After you have added the details to your tree click on ‘save’.

Can I search other trees and share mine with other people?

Yes, your tree can be shared with other registered users of Findmypast. You can do this when looking at your own tree and sharing the URL in the address bar of your browser. It can only be viewed by another Findmypast user who is signed into their account.

Your family tree also has privacy controls that you can use to prevent it being shared or made public for other people. To ensure the content remains private, go to the ‘Tree settings’ option in your Family Tree and untick the ‘Public tree’ box.

Can I make a copy of my tree/export a gedcom file?

Yes, once logged into your account, go to the ‘Family tree’ options on the top left of this page, then select ‘View all trees’ and ‘Export tree’. When your tree is ready to export, click on ‘Download tree’.

I already have a gedcom/digital copy of my family tree – can I upload it to Findmypast?

Yes, you can upload any gedcom file that contains your family tree.

To do this, you can go to the ‘My Family Tree’ link at the top of the website then click on ‘Create a Tree’. You will see a link which says ‘Import a tree’. When you click on that link, you will have the option to upload your gedcom file from your PC to your Findmypast account.

How do I add photos to my tree?

You can upload a photo to an individual person’s profile on your tree by first clicking on their name and then ‘profile’ link.

Next, click on the ‘media’ link and then ‘add media’.

Finally, you choose which file/photo you would like to upload from your computer and it will take a few seconds to upload.

Can I add living relatives to my tree?

Information stored in your family tree will, in almost all cases, include personal information about other people that are still alive.

You should always seek permission from people who are living before you make their personal information available in your tree, or anywhere else online.

How do I search the records?

You can add as much or as little information as you like when searching for someone. In order to get better results, keep your search as broad as possible.

You can narrow down your search using the options under ‘Refine your search’ on the left hand side of the page.

What record types are available?

Users can find records within the following categories:

  • Birth, marriage, death & parish records
  • Census, land & surveys
  • Churches & religion
  • Directories & social history
  • Education & work
  • Institutions & organisations
  • Military, armed forces & conflict
  • Travel & migration

What are Findmypast ‘Hints’?

Hints are potential record matches to the people on your tree. A link to Hints appears as an orange circle containing a number which appears next to a person’s name on your family tree.

When you click on the orange number icon, you will be taken to see any Hints that have been suggested for that person.

Hints are based on a number of factors, including names, date and place or births, marriages and deaths.