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Help on Tracing Relatives

Help on Tracing Relatives  
Help on Tracing Relatives

We decided to put this section into the Fassit Website after tracing though a adoption site, and finding over 250,000 parents and children at anytime in the UK looking for each other. If you are searching for a relative you have our best wishes and I do hope the following information is beneficial to you.

Please contact us with your reunion stories as we would love to publish them to the website.

Trackers International
Contact Details
Free Membership

Contents of this Section

1. Getting a copy of your birth certificate

If you were adopted in England, Wales or Northern Ireland you have the right to get a copy of your original birth certificate when you are 18. People adopted in Scotland have the same right when they reach 16.

You can get this through your General Register Office (see section 3). People adopted before 12 November 1975 in England and Wales and before 8 December 1987 in Northern Ireland who want information about their birth records and who do not already know their birth name (only their adopted name) have to have a meeting with a social worker before they can get their birth certificate due to laws about access to birth certificates. This meeting can take place at a social services office, at the agency which arranged the adoption or in the General Register Office. This isn't necessary in Scotland.

2. Registering on the Adoption Contact Register

Adopted people and birth relatives can register with adoption contact registers. Birth relatives can leave their details here, or a letter for the adopted person.

General Register Office in England and Wales Website
For Northern Ireland contact Registrar General Website
For Scotland contact Birth link. Website

3. Visit the following sites


Website  (SCOTLAND)
Website  (IRELAND)

The National Archives of England, Wales and the United Kingdom has one of the largest archival collections in the world, spanning 1000 years of British history, from Doomsday Book of 1086 to government papers recently released to the public.

The National Archives has a number of searchable databases on searching for family to help you find the records you need. They also have several searchable databases to help you find out about records held by other archives.


For births, marriages, deaths, adoptions and civil partnerships please go to the Directgov website

For census returns, wills, military records and other material go to The National Archives’ website

You can view an archived version of in the UK Government Web Archive


Public Record Office of Northern Ireland


Scottish Archive Network


Website  (SCOTLAND)

The General Registry Office has an extensive archive of statutory records which date back to the beginning of civil registration in 1837, they can provide you with copies of the relevant birth, marriage and death certificates for your research. Also provide vital clues and pointers for future research directions, each certificate carries names of, and information about, family members that can lead you onto the next stage of your investigations.

If you have enough details, you can order certificates of entries originally registered anywhere in England or Wales from the GRO. This can be done either by ordering online, by post, phone or fax, or via the register office where the entry was recorded.

4. Use Telephone Directories

Have a look through the phone books for the area you are looking for. Libraries have a good collection of countrywide directories, and larger libraries have collections of overseas directories. You could try (BT Internet Directory Enquiries). You can also view older directories at BT Archives in London. You can also try the Internet White pages Search 

5. Check Electoral Registers

If you have an address you can search the electoral register. From this you can find out how long that person lived at that address because when their name disappears from the register it means they have moved, married or died. You can view a full set of Electoral Registers for the UK since 1947 at the British Library. Website

6. Trackers International

Trackers International is a 'not for profit' specialist research unit and is recommended by Fassit UK. It was founded in 1979 on the principles of justice. Justice for the hundreds of thousands of unmarried mothers who were denied the right to keep their babies. Justice for all the adoptees who were denied the right to be raised by their natural mothers.

It's survey of unmarried mothers is the most comprehensive ever conducted and reveals that out of 1000 unmarried mothers 979 were subjected to coercion and duress. It supports the campaign for an independent Inquiry into unlawful adoption procedures of the past.

For many years Trackers International enjoyed considerable success searching for and reuniting adoptees, parents, families and loved ones.

Today it conducts research, is extending it's photographic library of former Unmarried Mothers Homes and works with all those genuinely committed to seeking justice for families.

It opposes the secrecy of the Family Courts, forcible adoption and the taking of children from innocent parents.

It believes the law must be changed to ensure that when the grounds for adoption are proven to be false the child is returned to it's natural parents.

Fundamental to this is the fact that Social Workers must be held accountable for their actions.

The dedicated volunteers at Trackers International give their time and expertise freely, their commitment lies in their personal experience of the life long consequences of adoption.

Membership is free.

Trackers International
37 Ashway Clough
Blackstone Road
Telephone - 0161 483 7324

7. Other Tracing Family Help groups

There are hundreds of groups on the Internet that will help you trace your child, or your family. These groups, like Trackers International also have message boards where you can post a message for free, or see if someone has left a message for you.

Here are just a few:-

UK Birth Adoption Register


Silver Surfers

UK People Finder 


Adoptee Birth Family Connections

Birth quest

The Seeker

Searchline Ltd


Missing you –Scotland 

Reunion Registry

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