How we can help

The Research Service

If you are unable to visit our Family History Centre in Sherborne yourself, experienced and knowledgable volunteer members of the Society will do research on your behalf in the records held at our Centre.

In addition to paper transcripts from parish and other records, the Society has databases of family history information compiled by our volunteers:

These often contain information that is not yet available elsewhere online, and we can search the databases for you.

Work on improving and updating these datasets is ongoing and the Society also has new projects which are collecting data from other sources which will be of use to family historians. For details of all our current projects, click here.

Information we require from you

It will be to your advantage if you specify as clearly and precisely as possible the information that you are seeking, and enclose any relevant information which might assist us.

Please allow for a reasonable amount of time to answer your questions.


The charge for research is £5 an hour (SDFHS Members) or £10 an hour (non Members).

The cost of photocopies or printouts is 25p per page. This is to cover the time of the volunteer and a little of the cost of renting the building in which we work.


Payment for Research may be made by one of the following methods:-

Secure payment via Paypal (your own account if you have one, or by credit/debit card) using our online shop.

Secure online payment via www.

Go to Societies & Groups, then Somerset & Dorset FHS, then research services. Choose the amount that you wish to pay. Then select "Add to Trolley", then proceed to "Checkout" to enter your card details.

Cheques/Postal Orders. Payment by open limited cheque is safe for you, and prevents us having to send refunds. You should leave the amount and figures line blank for us to complete, but (important) write on the second line "not to exceed (x) pounds". Please make the cheque payable to SDFHS. Cheques etc. must be in sterling currency.

Enquiries are dealt with in the order that we receive them. All enquiries are dealt with by volunteers and we hope to reply to most requests in two weeks.

If payment is not received within 30 days, we will assume that you do not require the work which has been done for you.

Copies and Copyright

Much of our material is copyright and is supplied on the understanding that anything that we send will be used for personal use only and will not be passed on to others.

How to contact us

Research Service

Box 4502



Phone: (01935) 389611