Avon Family History

This page of the Family History website is dedicated to assist Genealogists and Family History researchers tracing lost relatives and ancestors in the Avon region of England, including the city of Bristol and surrounding territories. Avon was a county that existed between 1974 and 1996 before being abolished. You can find a range of resources including parish records information and links to births, marriages and deaths records through our website to help your research.

Bristol & Avon Family History Society

Run by volunteers, this society was formed in 1975 to assist family history research in the region. Members receive a Quarterly Journal and hold regular meetings to assist personal research.  The society also holds an annual Family History Fair and arranges interesting coach trips from time to time. The society holds it main meetings in Bristol with other meetings in Bath and Yate.  The society welcomes researchers making use of their room at the Bristol Records Office.

Bristol Archives

The Bristol Record Office holds almost 2 million documents spanning from the 12th Century to today. These records include official records for the city of Bristol, Parish records including births, marriages and burial records, public records including prisons, police and hospitals.  Most records are free to view, there is a modest charge for photography use. There is also a modest charge if you cannot visit the searchroom and want a member of staff to undertake a search of the collection on your behalf.

Baptisms, marriages & burials

Here are useful specific Gloucestershire county search pages that include the city of Bristol.  We have partnered with the leading family history website FindMyPast to provide links to these records to help with your research:

Gloucestershire Bristol Baptism Index 1660-1914
This baptism index includes over 400,000 names from over 110 parishes in the region.
Gloucestershire Bristol Marriage Index 1644-1939
There are over 273,000 records of marriages in the Bristol region between the given time frame, the parents of the famous Cary Grant can also be found within the archives.
Gloucestershire Bristol Burial Index 1625-1950
There are over 176,000 Bristol residents listed in this database of over 60 parishes, information includes their age at time of death and their burial date.

Bristol (Avon) Newspaper Archives

Local Newspaper Archives and Historical Newspapers can provide invaluable information for Family Historians and are a really useful resource.  Information can often be found that is not found in Church and Parish Records, or Censuses. At Family History, we are able to provide a direct link to Avon and Bristol Newspaper Archives from a variety of historical newspapers, covering a range of time periods. Here is the link and information on the historical Avon Regional Newspapers and the time periods they cover:

British Newspaper Archive – historic newspaper records in the Avon area
This site holds the following historical newspaper records for the Avon and Bristol area:

Local newspaper recordsrecord Year
Bristol Evening Post1939
Bristol Mercury1716
1790
1819-1896
1898-1900
Bristol Mirror1808-1832
1835
1837
1842
Bristol Times and Mirror1839-1853
1860-1870
Western Daily Press1858-1950