A warm welcome and a helping hand to anyone researching their roots in Suffolk, land of the southern folk.


NEW Suffolk Burial Index CD

Posted by Webmaster on Fri, 23rd Oct 2020

We are delighted to bring you, issue 3, of our highly regarded Burial Index which now covers entries from all known burial register sources held by Suffolk Archives, up to 1900.

Over 100,000 additional entries are included from new sources, an extended range of years covered and gaps filled. A comparison of the sources and years covered on this and the previous CD (issue 2) can be found in our full Suffolk Parishes listings.

A feature of the Suffolk Burial Index, unlike the National Burial Index, is that any extra notes found in a register entry are included. These notes could be helpful in growing your family tree and cover:

Family relationships, Eg.   'mar man; so John & Susanna late Glanville sp’, ‘wi Jeffery’,  and

Trade, position, etc., Eg     'apprentice with Robert Westopp', 'prisoner from goal', ‘householder’, ‘smallpox

Entries are presented in two ordered formats:


and in this issue for the first time


This CD is the culmination of much dedicated work over many years by all our helpers, and our special thanks to everyone involved in this project.

The CD is now available in our Shop price £15.32 + p&p.

An entry search can also be provided by our Burials Search Service

AGM 2020 & Members Area

Posted by Webmaster on Thu, 8th Oct 2020

Details of the AGM are now in the Members Area. The AGM this year will be held at 12:00 noon on Saturday 24th October 2020. This will be a “virtual” meeting held online using the Zoom platform.

Check the Members Area which has details of Agenda, Accounts, Minutes and a Proxy Form.  There is also some advice on setting up Zoom.

Non-members may be wondering what is in the Members Area. Here is a very brief description of the contents:

  1.  Monumental Inscriptions - A searchable database for various cemeteries in Suffolk. More to be added.
  2.  Help Forum - Help can be requested from other members to help solve your family history problems.
  3.  Find Places - Enter the name of a village or town in Suffolk and various information will be displayed, such as: Diocese, Deanery, Grid Reference etc. You will also be given details of any church or churches.
  4.  Roots Journal - There is a searchable database of our Roots Journal from 1975 to 2015. Searches can be made on Text, Place, Name or Ship.
  5.  Hearth Tax - There is a Place or Name search on the 17th Century Suffolk Hearth Tax.
  6.  Exchange Journals - We have a small selection of journals from other societies. These can be viewed, although there is no search facility.
  7.  Videos - We have videos of the lectures held at our recent AGMs.
  8.  Recently added is information to help you find details of your ancestors in the Great War and World War 2. 

Coronavirus Emergency

Posted by K Pulford on Mon, 28th Sep 2020

The following lists gives the status of talks and meetings held by the Groups. The emergency may continue for some time and may involve further cancellations. Please check back to see updates of the programmes.

Bury St Edmunds

We have decided that there are too many conserns voer the 'secong wave'  and have elected to cancel the meetings to the end on this year. We will review the situation again at the end of the year to see if there is any chance of starting again in the new year. 

Sudbury Group

 All meeting have been cancelled up to the end of the year.

Haverhill Group

April, May and June meetings have been cancelled.

Lowestoft Group

It has been decided to cancel the Family History Drop-Session at the Heritage Centre on Wednesday 18 March and the monthly meeting at the United Reform Church, London Road North, Lowestoft on 7 April due to the above. 

Ipswich Group

March and April meeting are cancelled. The coach trip to Family Tree Live has been cancelled.

SFHS Online Shop

The shop is operating as normal and we are delivering orders via mail as usual. You can use this as a way of doing some extra research whilst at home.

Suffolk Archives

All branches of Suffolk Archives will be closed until further notice.

To keep you busy during self-isolation finish your family tree using this free  starter chart


Posted by Webmaster on Thu, 3rd Sep 2020

This is first of our "Zoom" meetings for Members. 

David Allen presents "Blood, Guts and Gore. True Stories of Murder in Victorian England". This will be held at 12 noon on Saturday 3rd October 2020.

To attend a "Zoom" meeting, you will need to install Zoom. There are literally hundreds of videos and guides to install and use Zoom. Here are links to a couple of them:

Zoom installation or How to use Zoom  or you can choose one you like using a search engine (such as Google).

We hope to have more online talks for members. Also our AGM will be held in a  Zoom meeting on the 24th October.

SUFFOLK ROOTS - Editor & Page Make-up

Posted by Webmaster on Fri, 10th Jul 2020

Our editor for the past six years, Geoff. Dennish, is retiring due to health problems which he assures us are age, not job, related!

We are thus seeking a volunteer, or volunteers, who are willing to take over from him.

As members will be aware, our professionally printed journal is published in March, June, September and December each year and mainly comprises articles contributed by society members.

Each issue also includes an individual ‘theme’ which attracts related stories from readers’ own research or experiences.

Editing prepares the text material received from contributors for publication;

This is then followed by:-

Page make-up when the article and any accompanying illustrations are formatted, together with any accompanying illustrations, into our standard journal layout for the Printer.

These functions can either be carried out separately or they can be combined, as is the case at present.

Experienced Family historians with some knowledge of Word Processing - or Desk Top Publishing – and working from home are sure to find these voluntary tasks both interesting and satisfying.

Our friendly, helpful Printers have produced both Suffolk Roots and several similar publications for many years and can provide production advice.

They operate internationally and are thus well-used to working with customers at a distance so it is not necessary that our journal be compiled in Suffolk - or even in the UK!

All reasonable expenses incurred in the course of these editorial and pre-production processes will be reimbursed promptly and in full by the society.

To learn more about this essential and valued work, please contact the society through the following e-mail address:  applications@suffolkfhs.org.uk

Doug Howlett

Latest Marriage Index

Posted by K Pulford on Sat, 13th Jun 2020

We are pleased to bring you our latest CD of early (1650-1753) Suffolk Marriages, this one for Thedwastre & Stow deaneries, which complements our recent Baptisms CD for the same area and years.

Located in the centre of the county it covers 40 parishes: from those neighbouring Bury St Edmunds, in the west, to those around Stowmarket, in the east.

Names of all parishes covered, and the available years*, can be found in our Suffolk Parishes listings and also in our Shop where the CD is now available, price £10.00 + p&p.

Our thanks for this CD to our dedicated helpers working from original registers held at Bury & Ipswich Record Offices. For details of all deanery areas completed and those in progress please see Current Projects.

Study History at West Suffolk Colledge

Posted by K Pulford on Fri, 12th Jun 2020

‘Study history, study history’ (Winston Churchill)

Come to the West Suffolk College and change your life.

History is important and in the present times, we know we are living in a moment that will be of historic signifcance.  

Here at the West Suffolk Campus, Bury St Edmunds, we provide two courses that reach out to the historian in you.

The Access to History, English and Sociology: is the ideal course to get back into learning. It will introduce you to new and exciting opportunities. No previous qualifications are necessary. You will be exposed to challenging and thought provoking discussions, which will open up your mind to new concepts and ways of engaging, not only with academic subjects, but also with the world outside.

As well as providing a recognised route to Higher Education (degree programmes), it is designed to meet the needs of adult learners with child-friendly timetables and plenty of support.  It is also a great way of building up confidence and meeting new people, all with a common goal.  

The course is nationally recognised qualification for entry by all British universities. The Access to History, English and Sociology Course at the West Suffolk College enjoys a high success rate with the majority of our students going on to degree study. While many of our students have progressed to the BA (Hons) degree programmes at University of Suffolk here at Bury St Edmunds, others have gone on to study on a wide range of degree course in the humanities and social sciences nationally and an internationally.

History and English BA (hons) Degree Programme

Here at the West Suffolk College we offer the exciting combination of History and Literature. Both subjects explore similar issues and examine how, by knowing and exploring the past, we are more aware of the present and the future. Over the degree your will explore how we have been shaped as individuals and as a nation from ancient Greece, through early modern society, Victorian endeavour and on to the turbulent twentieth century.

For more information on these courses contact Dr Virginia Geraghty and Dr Radojka Startup.




Start a new history today.

Latest Baptism Index CD

Posted by K Pulford on Sat, 16th May 2020

This new CD, for Bosmere and Claydon Deanery areas, is a welcome addition to our growing collection of early (1650-1753) Anglican baptisms and links the already completed deanery areas in the west with those in the east of the county.      

36 parishes in the centre of the county are covered in an area stretching between Stowmarket, Ipswich & Debenham to the north. Parish names and their available years*, can be found in our Suffolk Parishes listings and also in our Shop where the CD is now available, price £15.32 + p&p.

Our special thanks to our dedicated team of volunteers for this their last CD completed at the old Ipswich Branch of Suffolk Record Office, and we all look forward the opening of the new building, currently ‘On Hold’.

All published entries are also available from our Search Services and for details of all deanery areas completed, along with those in progress, please visit our Current Projects.

David Daldry

Posted by K Pulford on Tue, 28th Apr 2020

I am sure we are all saddened to hear of the loss of David Daldry on Wednesday 22nd April 2020. David helped to form the Sudbury Group some 25 years ago and was a great support to them.

He was a past Chairman and Vice Chairman of Suffolk Family History Society and also Membership Secretary. David was a stalwart member of the Family History Federation executive committee. He was the Federation's Liaison Officer and was often seen around the country at exhibitions. David was a larger than life character with a wonderful sense of humour. We will miss him greatly.

David's obituary will be published in the next edition of the SFHS's Suffolk Roots.

Latest Baptism Index CD

Posted by K Pulford on Tue, 14th Apr 2020

We are pleased to bring you a little good news in these different and difficult times – the release of our 40th CD of the project and the penultimate one to complete our countywide coverage of all Anglican baptisms for 1754-1900.

This one, for South Elmham & Wangford Deaneries, includes Beccles & Bungay(2) and 23 surrounding parishes in the NE of the county. Names of all parishes covered, and the available years* of each, can be found in our Suffolk Parishes listings and also in our Shop where the CD is now available, price £15.32 + p&p.

Our special thanks to all our dedicated volunteers who’ve helped with the project over the past 17, yes seventeen, years, including our present teams, some of whom are taking an enforced break with the closure of Suffolk Record Office branches, whilst our growing ‘Home’ team continue work apace, and now also on those early (1650-1753) baptisms. 

All published entries are also available from our Search Services and for details of all deanery areas completed, along with those in progress, please visit our Current Projects.

We look forward to bringing you another CD very soon so watch this space! Meanwhile stay safe, at home, and perhaps researching your family history?