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Planning Your Visit

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Microfilm readers in the searchroom / Llun o: Darllenydd microffilm yn yr ystafell ymchwil

When is the record office open?

Do I need to book in advance?

What do I need to book?

Can I order documents in advance?

What ID must I bring?/CARN readers’ tickets

How should I prepare for my visit?

Information for family historians

What do I need to bring with me?

Are lockers available?

Are refreshments available?

Is there disabled access? 

Where is the record office?

Overnight accommodation

When is the Record Office open?

Opening Times
Monday: 10.00 am – 4.30 pm

Tuesday: 10.00 am – 4.30 pm - Please note that Tuesday mornings are occasionally used for school visits. If a school visit has been booked the search-room will not be open for general use. Schools are asked to book such a visit at least one month in advance.If you wish to visit on a Tuesday morning it is doubly important that you contact us in advance to check that the search-room will be available and that we have space for you.

Wednesday: CLOSED

Thursday: 10.00 am – 4.30 pm

Friday: 10.00 am – 4.30 pm


Do I need to Book in Advance?

Yes, spaces are limited and demand is high. Please contact us to make a booking:
Telephone: 01244 532364.
Email: archives@flintshire.gov.uk

If you will be bringing someone with you, even if they are not doing research themselves but are coming to assist or keep you company, you will need to book a place for them too. If you need to cancel a booking, please let us know as soon as possible, so that we can allocate the place to another customer. 

What do I need to Book?

You will need to identify what it is you wish to look at when you visit the Record Office.

Microfilm readers: Book a microfilm reader to look at parish registers, censuses, most newspapers and tithe apportionments.

Desks: Book a desk to look at original documents such as electoral registers, workhouse records, school records, council records or any records from our family, estate or business collections.

Note that some records, for example non-conformist chapel/church records, can be held both on microfilm and in original format. Book both a microfilm reader AND a desk for these.

Map table: Book a map table to look at Ordnance Survey maps, enclosure maps, tithe maps, abandoned mine plans or estate maps etc.  

Note that the tithe apportionments that accompany the tithe maps are held on microfilm. Book both a microfilm reader AND a map table for these.

Computers: Book a computer to access the internet for family history or local history research purposes. We have a subscription to Ancestry.com, so you can view original censuses and online indexes to births, marriage and deaths without charge.  

Laptops: Book a desk if you are bringing a laptop with you.  Electrical points are available at the desks. If you are also using a microfilm reader, book a microfilm reader and a desk as there is insufficient space for a laptop at the side of the microfilm readers.

Can I Order Documents in Advance?

If you know which documents you wish to consult (preferably with Finding Numbers), we shall try to have the documents ready for you to look at when you visit the Record Office.

What ID Must I Bring?/CARN Reader's Ticket

In order to view records at Flintshire Record Office, you will need a County Archive Research Network (CARN) reader's ticket.  If you do not have one already, we can produce one for you on the day of your visit. You will need to bring along some form or forms of ID that have your current address and signature. A good example of this is a driver’s licence which has both signature and address on. Alternatively,  a recent utility bill showing your name and current address plus a credit/debit card showing your signature, are acceptable.  Please telephone for details of other acceptable ID.  Once issued, the CARN ticket is valid for 4 years and is accepted in many Record Offices across the UK.

If you do not bring the correct forms of ID with you, you will not be allowed to look at original documents. We may be able to issue you with a temporary day ticket, but you will only be allowed to look at microfilms and other surrogate records, not original records.  

How Should I Prepare For My Visit?

• Identify what you want to research, and bring with you a list of relevant information such as dates, places, and names.  Decide what you would like to focus on and achieve during this particular visit.

• Staff are available to assist you, and will show you where the catalogues/indexes are, and how to use the microfilm readers or handle documents. However, we are unable to do research for you. Please read our source guides for information about what you can find out from various records.

• If you have telephoned or e-mailed in advance and received a response, please bring with you a copy of the response and/or any reference numbers you were given.

Information For Family Historians

• We have a Beginner's Guide to Researching Your Family History (PDF.doc 58KB new window) at Flintshire Record Office, which you may wish to read before visiting.

What Do I Need To Bring With Me?

You will need to bring the following items with you when visiting the Record Office:

Acceptable ID: CARN ticket (see above); or current driving licence with your name and address; or recent utility bill showing your name and address plus credit/debit card.  Please phone for details of other forms of acceptable ID. Without acceptable ID, you will not be allowed to look at original documents.

Pencils: Pens are not permitted in the searchroom as ink can cause damage to fragile and irreplaceable archives. You may also wish to bring a pencil sharpener. Pencil cases are not allowed. 

Notebook or scrap paper: to make notes on. Please note that large, bulky folders are not permitted in the searchroom for security reasons. Please try to make a list of what you want to look for in advance, so that you do not need to bring large folders into the searchroom.

- Digital Camera: You may wish to take photographs of documents for your research. We operate a photography permit system under which you can purchase a daily, weekly, monthly or yearly permit. Please see our Photography Policy (PDF.doc 22.5KB new window) for further details.

- Money – if you wish to purchase copies of records, you will need to pay by cash or cheque. We do not accept credit or debit cards.

Are Lockers Available?

Lockers are provided in the foyer (free of charge) and you will be asked to put all bags in the lockers. You will be issued with a clear plastic zip-up bag to put your pencils and small items in when entering the search room. Please leave coats either on the coat-stand in the foyer, or in your locker, for security reasons. Mobile phones must be switched off before entering the searchroom.

Are Refreshments Available?

You will need to bring food and drink with you. Seating is available for visitors to eat lunch in the foyer. Alternatively, there are several places in the village, within walking distance of the Record Office, which serve hot or cold lunches.

Is There Disabled Access?

The entrance foyer, searchroom and public toilets are situated on the ground floor and are accessible for disabled users. The searchroom has an automatic door with a ‘push button’ to open, which is suitable for wheelchair users. Customers who are unable to walk long distances may park in the staff car parking area just past the main entrance.

Where Is The Record Office?

Flintshire Record Office is located in The Old Rectory, Rectory Lane, Hawarden CH5 3NR, in the centre of Hawarden village.  Map showing Rectory Lane, Hawarden (new window).

Rectory Lane is a turning off the main road through Hawarden and is situated between the Post Office and a former HSBC bank.  If you are travelling by car, drive along Rectory Lane, then through a set of open gates. There is ample car parking at the front of the building (follow the signs for the Car Park, turning right down the slope in front of The Old Rectory).

To reach us by train:

If you are travelling by train, then from Liverpool Lime Street you can travel to Bidston on the Wirral and from there catch a connection directly to Hawarden station which is on the Bidston-Wrexham line.   There is a direct train from Wrexham to Hawarden every hour.

At Hawarden station, come out of the station car park and turn right when you reach the main road. After 5 minutes' walk you will arrive at the village centre. At the pedestrian crossing, cross the road and continue to the right until you reach the Post Office. Turn left down Rectory Lane (at the side of the Post Office) and through the open gates at the end.  The Old Rectory is in front of you and we are at the far end of the building.

From Chester Railway Station, there are regular buses to Hawarden (every half hour). Alight opposite the Glynne Arms public house, and cross the road to walk down Rectory Lane (as above). 

To reach us by bus:

From Mold Bus Station, Chester Bus Exchange and Chester Railway Station there are buses to Hawarden every half hour. The bus stop near Flintshire Record Office is called the Glynne Arms, Hawarden.

Please contact Flintshire Busline on Tel. 01352 704035, or check Traveline (new window) for further details.

Overnight Accommodation

For  information about accommodation in the area, please contact: Mold Tourist Information Centre, Daniel Owen Precinct, MOLD, Flintshire, CH7 1AP, Tel. 01352 759331, e-mail: mold@nwtic.com

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