Areas Covered

When the Society was formed its area centred around Bristol and its boundaries followed the County of Avon which was created in 1974. This county was abolished in 1996 and Bristol regained its 'county' status but the Society still uses the old Avon boundaries to define the area we cover.

The extremities of the area covered, which includes the cities of Bristol and Bath, run in the north from Thornbury on the banks of the Severn, eastwards to Hawkesbury. Then south via Marshfield and Bathford to Hinton Charterhouse, west to Radstock and across the Mendips via Blagdon to Uphill.

Other Family History Societies bordering our area are to the north Gloucestershire FHS, to the east Wiltshire FHS, to the south, Somerset & Dorset FHS and Dorset FHS and to the west Weston-Super-Mare FHS. Some of these Societies were formed after the Bristol and Avon FHS and to some extent, boundaries overlap.

We feel that to a large extent Bristol and Bath were a natural attraction for the country areas around them and many country families moved into the cities for work etc. In addition to this, many couples from the outlying areas came into Bristol and Bath to get married. Because of this, we think our Society is the natural one to join if you have ancestors in the area we serve.

The FamilySearch and Know Your Place sites have some excellent additional resources to explore.

The map shows parishes according to Diocese. Bristol Diocese parish records are in the Bristol Archives, Bath & Wells Diocese parish records are in Somerset Records Office in Taunton and Gloucester Diocese Records are in the Gloucestershire Records Office in Gloucester. However, we have records from these 'Avon' parishes of Bath & Wells and Gloucester Diocese on fiche in our Research Room in the Bristol Archives.