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About the Society

The British Record Society was founded in 1889 to compile, edit and publish indexes, calendars and transcripts of historical records in public or private custody throughout Great Britain. For many years it concentrated on producing indexes to English probate records to facilitate the study of English history and genealogy. More recently it has been engaged in a major programme of publishing transcripts of the seventeenth-century hearth tax returns, which provide not only comprehensive genealogical information but also a unique indicator to contemporary wealth and status. In 2016 the Society launched a new series on apprenticeship records, the first volume of which is Apprenticeship Disputes in the Lord Mayor’s Court of London 1573-1723, edited by Dr Michael Scott.

The British Record Society is a registered charity and its work (undertaken by volunteers) is funded by subscriptions both from individuals and institutions worldwide. It publishes irregularly and at an average rate of about one volume a year. Subscribers receive these volumes free of charge. The current Chair of the Council is Dr Kate Tiller of Oxford University, who succeeded the late Professor David Hey in 2016.

Since 2010 there have been two publications in the probate series: Wills in the Consistory Court of Lichfield 1650-1700 and Wills in the Archdeaconry Court of Barnstaple 1506-1858. The next volume will cover the medieval and peculiar court of Yorkshire. In the same period the following have been added to the hearth tax series: Warwickshire Hearth Tax Returns Michaelmas 1670 with Coventry Lady Day 1666, Essex Heath Tax Returns Michaelmas 1670, London and Middlesex 1666 Hearth Tax and Yorkshire East Riding Hearth Tax 1672-3. Good progress is being made towards the completion of several other counties, particularly Norfolk, Northumberland, Bristol, and Huntingdonshire. The next volume in the apprenticeship series will cover the records of the Merchant Taylors’ Company of London.

British Record Society Limited

A charity registered with the Charity Commission for England and Wales, no. 248874

A company limited by shares registered in England and Wales, no. 00037931

Registered office: 48 Melrose Avenue, Reading, RG6 7BN