Research Plans 

At Relatively Speaking, you, the client, define exactly what type of research you require following a free initial consultation.

For maximum flexibility, I propose two alternative approaches: a selection of fixed package research plans, or an hourly rate where you define in advance the length and scope of the research.

 

Fixed Packages

"George"  - Basic one surname plan

10 hours of research       £300

Starting from a parent or grandparent, this plan traces one surname line back as far as possible in the time allowed (usually at least to the late 1700s/early 1800s).

"Edward" - Dual surname plan

20 hours of research       £550

Starting from two parents or grandparents, this plan traces two surname lines back as far as possible in the time allowed (usually at least to the late 1700s/early 1800s). The lines can be a husband and wife, two grandfathers, etc.

"Victoria" - Four generation all-lines plan

35 hours of research         £985

Starting from a parent or grandparent, this plan traces their parents, grandparents and great-grandparents.

What can you expect?

All plans will normally include the following information for each generation:

  • Dates of birth, marriage and death

  • Names and basic details of siblings

  • Full transcription of all census returns (where applicable)

  • A certain amount of historical/social context

Depending on record availability, they may also include:

  • Dates of baptism and burial from parish or cemetery records

  • Probate records

  • Military service in World War I or earlier

  • Transcriptions of relevant newspaper articles

  • Information from sources such as school log books, workhouse registers, criminal registers, passenger lists, trades directories, professional bodies and electoral registers

All results are provided in a fully-referenced genealogy report, supplied in electronic and/or paper format, as preferred. If desired, the report can incorporate family photographs or copies of other documents you supply. The report will also contain an introduction to the major sources used, one or more family trees (depending on the selected plan) and a record of all sources consulted, including those where no information was found. 

Prices do not include the purchase of birth, marriage or death certificates. Unless otherwise agreed, these will only be acquired if absolutely necessary, and will be charged to you at cost. No certificate will be purchased without your prior authorisation and all certificates will be included in the report.

The above plans can all be "tweaked" slightly with no supplementary charge - please ask for details. 

 

Bespoke Package

"Crown" - Hourly rate

 

£30 per hour (minimum 1 hour)

 

For total liberty of choice I propose a bespoke research package at a straightforward hourly rate. Following an initial free consultation, you define the number of hours and the scope of the research. The possibilities are virtually endless: for instance, you might choose to follow one or more surname lines for a specified number of hours, research multiple ancestors of a person or couple or trace (deceased) descendants of a known ancestor. Or you might prefer an in-depth look at one or two generations - it's entirely up to you. Simply contact me to discuss your requirements and establish a personalised project.

What can you expect?

All multi-generational research will normally include the following information for each generation:

  • Dates of birth, marriage and death

  • Names and basic details of siblings

  • Full transcription of all census returns (where applicable)

  • A certain amount of historical/social context

Depending on record availability, it may also include:

  • Dates of baptism and burial from parish or cemetery records

  • Probate records

  • Military records from World War I or earlier

  • Transcriptions of relevant newspaper articles

  • Information from sources such as school log books, workhouse registers, criminal registers, passenger lists, trades directories, professional bodies and electoral registers

Starting from 5 hours research, results are presented in a fully-referenced genealogy report, supplied in electronic and/or paper format as preferred. If desired, the report can incorporate family photographs or copies of other documents you supply. The report will also contain an introduction to the major sources used, one or more family trees (depending on the type of research commissioned) and a record of all sources consulted, including those where no information was found. 

For 2-4 hours research, results are presented in a short report: if desired, a full genealogy report (as above) can be supplied for a supplement of £25.

Prices do not include the purchase of birth, marriage or death certificates. Unless otherwise agreed, these will only be acquired if absolutely necessary, and will be charged to you at cost. No certificate will be purchased without your prior authorisation and all certificates will be included in the report.

What are the limitations?

You should be aware that a certain number of factors can potentially limit all family history research. 

  • Record availability: not all parish records have survived, and the amount of information in them varies considerably, particularly before the early 1800s. Civil registration was only introduced in England and Wales in 1837 and in Scotland in 1855.

  • Illegitimacy: it will not always be possible to identify the father of an illegitimate child. 

  • Ancestors from overseas (including Ireland): limited records are available, depending on the country.

  • Military records: about 60% of World War I records have not survived, while World War II records are held by the Ministry of Defence and can only be obtained by the next-of-kin.

Please note I do not research or trace living people.

General Terms

Enquiries are free and without obligation. After preliminary consultation I will carry out a short assessment of the availability of relevant records and inform you as quickly as possible if I am able to undertake the research. 

Once we agree on the details of your project I will send you a contract to sign and return along with a non-returnable deposit equivalent to at least 50% of the total fee. I accept payment in £ sterling by cheque or bank transfer. (Other currencies by arrangement.)

Research will begin as soon as possible after I receive the signed contract and deposit, depending on work already in hand. I will inform you in advance if there is likely to be a delay of more than one week before I can commence the research.

 

Depending on the length of the project, you will normally receive one or more intermediate progress reports. If any major research-limiting problems are encountered, I will discuss them with you so that a suitable adjustment can be made to the project. I will also contact you for approval prior to purchasing any birth, marriage or death certificates which were not specified in the original contract. All certificates will be charged to you at cost.

When the research is complete, you will receive an invoice for the outstanding amount due. All documentation and certificates will be sent to you once payment is received in full. 

If you decide to cancel the contract before completion of the project you must inform me by telephone or e-mail. If more than 50% of the agreed research has been completed, you will be invoiced for the outstanding amount at a rate of £30 per hour plus the cost price of any certificates purchased. All completed documentation and certificates will be sent to you once this payment is received.