Author Topic: Why no digitisation of birth, mariage and death vital records?  (Read 2026 times)

Offline iantresman

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Why no digitisation of birth, mariage and death vital records?
« on: Thursday 22 November 18 09:20 GMT (UK) »
It really bugs me that in order to gain access to, for example, to the information on a marriage certificate, that I have to buy one for an extraordinary fee. (I know there are indices).

Why aren't they digitised? I don't want a certificate, I merely want the information that it on them. I'm not aware of any law preventing their digitisation, after all, the information is available on a certificate without hindrance.

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Online Jebber

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Re: Why no digitisation of birth, mariage and death vital records?
« Reply #1 on: Thursday 22 November 18 09:32 GMT (UK) »
These event are not recorded for the benefit of us family historians.

 Have you any idea of the cost that would be involved in such a project, the Government has much more important things to spend the tax payers money on. We should be grateful that many marriage entries are becoming available through digitisation by record office  and commercial companies,
CHOULES All ,  COKER Harwich Essex & Rochester Kent 
COLE Gt. Oakley, & Lt. Oakley, Essex.
DUNCAN Kent
EVERITT Colchester,  Dovercourt & Harwich Essex
GULLIVER/GULLOFER Fifehead Magdalen Dorset
HORSCROFT Kent.
KING Sturminster Newton, Dorset. MONK Odiham Ham.
SCOTT Wrabness, Essex
WILKINS Stour Provost, Dorset.
WICKHAM All in North Essex.
WICKHAM Medway Towns, Kent from 1880
WICKHAM, Ipswich, Suffolk.

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Offline stanmapstone

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Re: Why no digitisation of birth, mariage and death vital records?
« Reply #2 on: Thursday 22 November 18 09:35 GMT (UK) »
This has been addressed many times on RootsChat
BMD digitisation project put on hold
http://www.whodoyouthinkyouaremagazine.com/news/bmd-digitisation-project-put-hold

Stan
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Offline iantresman

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Re: Why no digitisation of birth, mariage and death vital records?
« Reply #3 on: Thursday 22 November 18 09:58 GMT (UK) »
These event are not recorded for the benefit of us family historians.

Have you any idea of the cost that would be involved in such a project, the Government has much more important things to spend the tax payers money on. We should be grateful that many marriage entries are becoming available through digitisation by record office  and commercial companies,

I would hand over the project to www.freebmd.org.uk and bung them a chunk of cash to buy scanners and storage. They already have 270m out of an estimated 346m records, that "just" need linking to scanned certificates. It would be much more cost effective than manually retrieving and posting certificates.

Offline mike175

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Re: Why no digitisation of birth, mariage and death vital records?
« Reply #4 on: Thursday 22 November 18 10:02 GMT (UK) »
Perhaps I'm in the minority but for me much of the enjoyment of family history comes from finding information despite all the difficulties. Piecing together odd bits of the jigsaw until suddenly you have the full picture, or at least enough to give you a good idea of the full picture. If that involves me in some expense it is entirely my choice, I don't expect anyone else to subsidise my hobby any more than they would if I was interested in mountaineering, flying or trainspotting  ::)

Once everything is fully available in digital form for anyone to access there will be no need for research and our hobby will be dead  :'( 

Anyway, after many years of research most of my missing ancestors pre-date the census by a century or more, so why aren't all parish registers fully digitised?  ;)
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Offline Kiltpin

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Re: Why no digitisation of birth, mariage and death vital records?
« Reply #5 on: Thursday 22 November 18 10:12 GMT (UK) »

 It would be much more cost effective than manually retrieving and posting certificates.


I think you would find it is just the opposite. I am sure that with commercial, private and hobby charges they are making more than enough to pay the cost of doing the job and the wages and the NI contributions and maybe a little bit extra to keep the Exchequer happy.

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Chas
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Offline BumbleB

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Re: Why no digitisation of birth, mariage and death vital records?
« Reply #6 on: Thursday 22 November 18 10:14 GMT (UK) »
Freebmd has enough to do just transcribing the GRO entries - we, who do that task, are volunteers and we do what we can, when we are able to do it.  I'm not sure that you understand the enormity of just doing that.

At the moment I am working on Marriages in the September quarter of 1969 - my current assignment is pages 1101 to 1110 AND that covers marriage for surnames beginning "L".  I've just completed page 1108 and the last surname on that page is Layzell.  The last page in that quarter is page 2111, and there are an average of 130 surnames per page.  :o
Transcriptions and NBI are merely finding aids.  They are NOT a substitute for original record entries.
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Offline Guy Etchells

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Re: Why no digitisation of birth, mariage and death vital records?
« Reply #7 on: Thursday 22 November 18 11:19 GMT (UK) »
It really bugs me that in order to gain access to, for example, to the information on a marriage certificate, that I have to buy one for an extraordinary fee. (I know there are indices).

I take it you have not been buying certificates for very long.
The cost of certificates has never been cheaper (in real terms) than it is today, family history was many times more expensive in the past.
The GRO as a Government Department has a legal obligation to pass on the costs of supplying information (such as a certificate) to the person who requires the information, it is not allowed to make a profit (or for that matter a loss) on the supply of such information.

Why aren't they digitised? I don't want a certificate, I merely want the information that it on them. I'm not aware of any law preventing their digitisation, after all, the information is available on a certificate without hindrance.

The simple answer is if you want to provide the funds to digitise the civil marriages send it to the GRO with a request to digitise the registers it will be done.

A more complex answer has been given in threads as stanmapstone indicated

Cheers
Guy
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Online BushInn1746

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Re: Why no digitisation of birth, mariage and death vital records?
« Reply #8 on: Thursday 22 November 18 11:20 GMT (UK) »
Hello

BumbleB Free BMD was an absolutely fantastic tool, so thank you all.

I originally started out, when it was 10 miles to the nearest Central Library just to read the GRO Indexes on Fiche, (25 miles for Post 1858 Will Calendars) and then to the Priory Courts fill out a Form & pay a fee for a Will, I'd have to be frisked and pass through a body detector to get in to the Court, to get a Copy Will posted).

Also the Census, we had to take a 100 mile early train to Chester and rolling the film image by Census image, after viewing a reel I was punch drunk tired. Fortunately, the helpful Archivist managed to find an Alphabetical Register by mid afternoon, I saw my Ancestor, then found the couple half way through another Census film and got a print just before hometime.

Personally, I don't want them wasting money putting GRO Certificates online, that are easily obtainable in a week to 10 working days from an online Index and online Ordering system.

What we want and need online and transcribed are more images of records pre GRO Registration and pre 1841 Census, because this is where many family historians are getting really stuck.

Many many families had Mariners in them 200 years ago and they and other documents would likely be much more useful to many.

I never ordered one wasted Certificate either finding my Ancestry, but I have now ordered more than those total of Certificates trying to find a sideways ancestor, plus seen or acquired over 200 Wills, as my line just stops at a Birth about 1784 to 1787.

Whilst waiting for Certificates, you can sometimes find ancestors in a whole raft of other records too (some Directories freely available online).

Obviously, I'm frustrated at the numerous OCR corruptions of just the word Selby (e.g. Selbv and Salhy, Selhv, 8elbv, etc., etc.) in newspapers.

Mark
"George HOOD of Selby" Before 1812?

Born about 1785 (Yorkshire per 1841 Census)

Married Sarah RUSSELL at Selby 1815 newspaper - "both of that place".

Buried in the Quaker Burial Ground at Selby as "Not in Membership" in 1845, aged 60 years.

George HOOD of Selby was refused Membership of the Quakers in 1836.

Elected Overseer of the Poor of Selby in 1838.

Had both known (Selby) and unknown (some not stated 1846) property interests.

Possible (but unknown) links to COOK and/or PEARSON names.