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Seeking professional help with family history enquiries
We encourage people to do their own research as the investigation process can be very rewarding, but some of you are unable to do this for perfectly good reasons. We concentrate on London police-related research at a number of sources, including the National Archives, London Metropolitan Archives and other sources.
Step 1: Find out all you can about your ancestors and create a written list of personal details and the evidence you have that they were police officers. You may have references to occupation in census records, or on certificates of marriage, death and birth of their children. If you have references to these events, it will be worthwhile obtaining copies of the certificates to establish the details properly. It can be easy to make assumptions about identity of people with the same names from genealogical indices.
Step 2: Do you know which Police Force they were members of? In London, the largest Force is the Metropolitan Police, but the City of London Police is independent, and officers served also with Transport, docks and other smaller police forces. Sometimes a census entry gives this detail.
Step 3: Do you have evidence that they received a pension (after, say, 25 years' service)? Do you know the Metropolitan Police Officer's warrant number - the crucial identification factor? Do you know the Divisional number for a uniform officer? Sometimes this is shown on photographs on the officer's collar or shoulder. Where did they live?
Step 4: Consider whether you wish us to do the research for you. The service comprises support and advice for you to establish exactly what information you already have about your ancestor, and we then endeavour to trace them. We supply you with extracts or copies of register entries reflecting points in their police career according to whether these are available. In some cases this could include, for instance a pension record showing the officer's description, next of kin and address to which they retired.
If there is sufficient detail for us to search for the officer, a typical charge for the service is £60. Keith Skinner is a member of AGRA, the Association of Genealogists and Researchers in Archives, and therefore we are bound by their Code of Practice.
If you are interested, please email us with the details.
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