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FreeBMD was last updated on 18 May 2013

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RolloTheRed Report 21 May 2013 16:57

Even given all manner of typos, 2 or more guess for some entries and so on there are a lot of marriage entries missing and by extrapolation other entries except they are not so obvious.

I have no particular problem with this as there are other resources and FreeBMD is quick and provided on a volunteer basis both for the server from the Bunker and the transcribers.

OTOH it is not a good thing that (a) FreeBMD does not allow users to report possible missing entries and (b) that FreeBMD regards transcripts of freehand indexes into print or typewritten as primary data when they are obviously not. Indeed the GRO indexes themselves are derived from the primary source of the RO returns and are chock full of errors of one sort and another.

Providing the transcribers with poor quality images is another poor choice.

The worse thing though is to claim a year is 99% complete when it is nothing of the sort.

Some researchers assume that for the years it claims GRU is both complete and accurate. They should assume neither.


Kense Report 21 May 2013 16:41

Where there is an odd number of entries on a marriage page it is sometimes because the same person has been transcribed twice.

If that is not the case then look at the districts and check they are all the same.

If they are not then one of the districts is probably wrong - a search using year, quarter, vol and page number should show where that entry belongs and you can then send in a correction after confiming it from the image.

I found several missing entries where Rochford had been mistranscribed as Rochdale.


RolloTheRed Report 21 May 2013 12:25

FreeBMD is nothing like "done" it is full of errors and omissions.

For errors in existing records the site has a rather convoluted reporting system which will get a record corrected after a few weeks - I have submitted over 100 accepted corrections so overall there must be a lot of errors. Such corrections are based solely on the BMD index image. However a great many pre 1870 indexes were created in longhand and subsequently transcribed into print by the GRO. This process resulted in a lot of errors which FreeBMD perpetuates.

FreeBMD does allow users to annotate records with "postems" though few people take advantage more's the pity.

FreeBMD does not allow users to report missing records of which there are a great many. This is easiest to see with marriage records. Pretty obviously a set of marriage records should return 2,4,6 or 8 people for a given reference. With FreeBMD this is often an odd number.

The quality of the BMD index on Ancestry is a good dealer better and more comprehensive than on the FreeBMD web site. It is often said that the FreeBMD web site and Ay have the same database. Not so.

FreeBMD could help its volunteers a lot by providing better quality images.


mgnv Report 21 May 2013 10:00

Most of the index thru the 1950s is essentially completely done. The incomplete quarters there are:

Births Jun 1940 (64%) **************
Births Sep 1940 (0%) **************
Births Dec 1940 (0%) **************
Births Sep 1943 (45%) **************
Births Dec 1943 (0%) **************
Births Dec 1945 (98%) *
Births Sep 1958 (15%) **************
Births Dec 1958 (0%) **************
Births Sep 1959 (75%) **************
Marriages Sep 1952 (33%) *******************
Marriages Dec 1952 (0%) *******************
Marriages Dec 1956 (98%) *
Deaths Dec 1844 (99%) *

Karen in the desert

Karen in the desert Report 21 May 2013 01:15

Cheers Joy :-)


JoyDean Report 20 May 2013 18:49

You're welcome.



JoyDean Report 20 May 2013 13:00

FreeBMD is an ongoing project, the aim of which is to transcribe the Civil Registration index of births, marriages and deaths for England and Wales, and to provide free Internet access to the transcribed records. It is a part of the FreeUKGEN family, which also includes FreeCEN (Census data) and FreeREG (Parish Registers). To search the records that have so far been transcribed by FreeBMD click on the Search button below.

The recording of births, marriages and deaths was started in 1837 and is one of the most significant resources for genealogical research. The transcribing of the records is carried out by teams of dedicated volunteers and contains index information for the period 1837-1983. PLEASE NOTE: WE HAVE NOT YET TRANSCRIBED THE WHOLE INDEX. A breakdown by event and year can be viewed here

The FreeBMD Database was last updated on Sat 18 May 2013 and currently contains 229,076,495 distinct records (289,605,987 total records).


JoyDean Report 20 May 2013 13:00