Arnos Vale Friends receive Queen Award

The Friends of Arnos Vale Cemetery recognised with Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service for 2015.

'The Friends of Arnos Vale Cemetery' have been honoured with the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service, the highest award a voluntary group can receive in the UK.

The 'Friends' were established in 1987, when called into action following a press report that the then private owners wanted to clear a large section of the cemetery for commercial development. The group of concerned local people came together to oppose the proposals and win long-term protection for the site placing it back into public ownership. Today the Friends support the Cemetery Trust in promoting Arnos Vale as a place of remembrance, heritage, wildlife and learning for the community.

The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service is the highest award given to local volunteer groups across the UK to recognise outstanding work in their communities. The awards were created in 2002 to celebrate the Queen’s Golden Jubilee and winners are announced each year on 2 June – the anniversary of the Queen’s Coronation.

A team of about 100 people give up their time to work on the landsacape, in reception, in the shop, doing research and other administrative roles - new volunteers are always welcome if you fancy joining in. To discover more about volunteering for the friends, visit the Arnos Vale Cemetery website at

The Friends of Arnos Vale Cemetery will receive the award from the Lord Lieutenant of Bristol later this summer.

Kew Coach Trip

On Wednesday 14th October 2015 there will be a further visit to the Records Office at Kew.

The price of tickets has been held and will remain at just £20 for this trip. There will be two pick-up points - the corner of Canons Way and Explore Lane (the road which connects Anchor Road with Canons Way) at 7.00 a.m. and at the BAWA, Club, Southmead Road at 7.30 a.m. M4 interchange pick-up by arrangement.

You will need a Reader's Ticket to access the archival materials area at Kew. To obtain this please bring proof of identity (passport or driving licence) and proof of address (utility bill or driving licence).

The National Archives now has on-line reders ticket application. Completing the process before visiting Kew will save you valuable time when you arrive there.

Go to:


IF YOU HAVE PROBLEMS PLEASE CONTACT :- NEIL SLAUGHTER, Archive Production Manager, The National Archives, Kew, 020 8392 5200 ext 21228

Seats must be reserved by writing to Alan Strong, 62 Karen Drive, Backwell, BS48 3JS or by phoning 01275 462238 or by Email:

Free Download - Bristol Cathedral Marriages 1615 - 1754

Roger Price has made available yet another set of records for the benefit of all visitors to our website.

This time he has produced a chronological index and a name index of Bristol Cathedral marriage records from 1615 - 1754. Find the link to this and the other sets of data that Roger has given permission for us to publish, on our Downloads Page.

40th Anniversary Celebration

On Saturday 4th July there will be a special free event for members only to celebrate The 40th Anniversary of BAFHS.

The event will take place at the Hanham Community Centre, BS15 3EJ. 12.30-16.30.

There will be afternoon tea and the guest speaker will be Michael Gandy from the Society of Genealogists. Although this is a free event for members, numbers are limited to 200 so it is vital that anyone wishing to attend contacts Gaynor Woolley by 1st June at the latest to book a place. email: It is hoped to have a display of Society events throughout the years, so if you have any photographs you would like to share with fellow members please send them to

Free Book - Bristol in the First World War

‘Bristol in the First World War’

Published by the Bristol Cultural Development Partnership for ‘Bristol 2014’


This 120-page book comprises a collection of essays on various topics and events which formed part of Bristol’s history in the First World War.  These cover not only subjects related to the armed forces and theatre of war but also many aspects of life on the home front, including the roles of local industries, hospitals and entertainment. There are further articles about post-war political and social changes, housing development and how the war dead were commemorated.  It is wide-ranging book but all the articles are concise on their subject matter and accompanied by a good selection of pictures.

The book has been published for this year’s ‘Great Reading Adventure’ and forms part of the Bristol 2014 programme commemorating the centenary of the start of WW1.  Although the ‘Great Reading Adventure’ concept over the last 10 years has been directed mainly at younger people, this is a good read for all.

This book is FREE and can be obtained in Bristol from museums, libraries, Bristol Record Office and our Society’s local outlets. It is also being distributed through Bristol schools or it can be obtained as a downloadable pdf from – click on ‘Great Reading Adventure’.