Why can't I find the person I’m looking for?


There are a number of potential reasons for people not showing up on a first search of the Register:

  • If the person was born less than 100 years ago, they are deemed to still be alive unless proven otherwise so the record is closed.
  • The register itself was maintained up until 1991. Findmypast will be updating the Register on a regular basis.
  • Names may be listed differently than anticipated. As with many large databases you may need to be flexible and even creative with your searching.  You may need to carry out your search a number of times but vary the information slightly, or try using surname only to find the correct family. To narrow down your search you may wish to carry out an address search.
  • Individuals listed in a different location to family groups. On 29th September 1939 mass evacuation of the population had already occurred so the records of many individuals in particular may be listed in an entirely different location to the rest of the family group. You may need to review names and dates of birth of individuals in areas where individuals were evacuated to in order to find the correct record. You could try using name and place of birth to narrow down your search results.
  • With an index that links to a database containing details of millions of individuals it is inevitable that some errors will occur in the transcription. If you notice any errors, please get in touch and we will endeavor to investigate - we will always correct any transcription errors when we find them. 
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