COVID-19 Update


For those with English/Welsh origins we are able to offer a service since the resumption of document orders in government departments. However, due to new shop orders for research, you will find some items ‘out of stock’ and they will remain so until we have cleared those projects. We still expect to encounter delays for other document delivery services so there may still be DELAYS to our delivery to you. We strongly advise against ordering a research package for a specific birthday etc.

Scottish Research

For those who wish for us to trace their Scottish family trees, the news is not so good. Record offices and archives remain closed. This affects us during the initial stages of any research because we cannot access the necessary documents for the period 1920 – present without major delays.


From the outset we have been flexible with regards to expiry dates on our genealogy gift experience vouchers.

If you have a voucher that had not expired before 23rd March 2020, your voucher is extended for 15 months, e.g. your original voucher expires on 10 October 2020 and with the 15 month extension it now expires on 10 March 2022.

To obtain a 15 month extended date you must contact us in writing (do not phone). Visit our Contact Us page and use the form if necessary.

Once you have contacted us, you will receive by email your extended date.

Please note though we have a ‘Force Majeure’ in place – see below.

Status of Current Venues for Genealogy Experiences

As places begin to re-open, they have in place a number of restrictions. The two third-party venues we use will re-open in August and September and will limit the number of people allowed in the building.

They will enforce social distancing. Genealogy experiences do not work with social distancing as both professional genealogist and customer need to share a computer screen.

At the Society of Genealogists, we will not be allowed to bring any guests, so this rules it out as a venue for genealogy experiences for some time.

The customers we have spoken to have said they are willing to wait given they have a 15 month extension. This is fine from our point of view, but what happens if things do not change?

Force Majeure

As part of our Terms & Conditions we have a clause called a ‘Force Majeure’ which basically means an Act of God or ‘any other matter or cause beyond the control of Family History Gifts’. This clause has now been enacted.

What this means is that as a Force Majeure event has occurred, we at Family History Gifts are solely limited to providing the customer with a gift experience of some kind, not necessarily what is advertised.

As time progresses we will monitor the situation with regards to record offices and the relaxation of the rules, but it might eventually be necessary to change how the genealogy experiences are conducted.

Naturally we will do our very best to provide the full ‘as advertised’ experience, but due to the circumstances beyond our control, we may eventually have to consider other options.