What we are working on

Last updated March 2021

1 New record sets and data enhancements

  • More than 6,000 Church of Scotland kirk session, presbytery and synod records were made available via the Virtual Volumes system on 16 March 2021.
  • More than 3,000 baptismal records from non-Church of Scotland Presbyterian churches dating from 1752–1855 were added to the site on 19 September 2019, with an additional batch of around 1,500 entries added on 16 October 2020.
  • Valuation rolls for 1940 were added to the site on 14 May 2019.
  • Passenger lists for the Highland and Island Emigration Society were added to the site on 27 February 2019.

2 Surname variants and complex searches

  • There is currently a technical issue affecting searches in statutory registers, church registers and census returns, if the "Name Variant" option is selected. This problem affects some searches where a second name (such as a mother's maiden name, spouse's name or second person's forename) is added to the search. This issue does not affect other search options (such as wildcards and 'names that start with'). This issue is under investigation and we recommend that you use the other search options when making complex searches with additional name fields.

3 Previously completed service improvements and changes

  • Within the ‘Church registers’ category under the Advanced Search, we have fixed a system error. Search results for ‘Other churches’ now display results for the specified location.
  • The Quick search on the home page now accepts surnames with an apostrophe, for example, O’Hara.
  • Following a request from the Archdiocese of St Andrews and Edinburgh, we have removed all the Catholic cemetery records for Mount Vernon in Edinburgh owing to issues related to the accuracy of this record set.
  • The search box for the mother’s maiden name in the death records now includes the words ‘Not always recorded before 1974’. This is because between 1855 and 1973, there are a limited number of indexes for death entries that include the mother's maiden surname and age at death. When populating this field, users should click on the box 'Include unrecorded mother’s maiden name’ to return all matches.
  • The timeline feature which allows you to save your records in chronological order no longer resets to zero when a description of an older image is saved. Find out more in our Timelines guide.
  • For our statutory records, the ‘Ref’ column on the search results page can be clicked to allow the list of Registration Districts to be sorted from low to high numbers or vice versa. A similar function has been added to the Census returns such that the ‘Ref’ column can be clicked to sort the list of enumeration districts from low to high numbers or vice versa.
  • The list of ‘Event dates’ within the Catholic church registers can be clicked to allow the event date list to be sorted from oldest to latest or vice versa.
  • The search criteria for Old Parish Registers have been amended so that parents' names can now be inserted.
  • For customers in our search rooms and at local family history centres, the ‘Viewed’ box changes colour when an image is viewed.