Recognising that we all have a story to tell, the Ulster Historical Foundation, funded by the Department of Arts, Culture and Leisure through its Renewing Communities programme, organised a series of workshops aimed at local communities and individuals to help them find out more about their family, local or community histories.

The scheme, titled ‘My Roots’, proved very successful with workshops on topics such as ‘Getting Started in Genealogy’, Church Records, Civil Registration, Census Records and ‘Using the Internet for Genealogy’. Each participant in the workshops received our information pack which included the booklet, My Roots – Tracing your Belfast Ancestors.

The series of lectures were taken by our experienced team of researchers and were held in local libraries or community halls with a visit to the Public Record Office of Northern Ireland (PRONI) in Belfast as the highlight of the series of three workshops; in some cases where a trip to Belfast was not feasible, a visit to the area’s local history library was arranged.

Feedback on the workshops was extremely positive, especially on the visit to PRONI, which most of the participants had never visited before. With our help and guidance the participants were enrolled with PRONI and given an overview of the premises and its holdings. The community groups which benefited from the ‘My Roots’ workshops included Tullycarnet, Rathcoole, Ballyclare, Greenisland, Glengormley, Carrickfergus, Lisburn, Finaghy and Rathfriland.

My Roots Cover