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What is the births index?

Local and family history A-Z > Births, marriages and deaths > Civil registration > Births index
  • The births index is an index to the births registers that have been produced since compulsory civil registration of births began in England and Wales on 1st July 1837 (although penalties for non-registration were not introduced until 1875)
  • The index is maintained by the General Register Office (GRO)
  • The births registers themselves are not available to the public but anyone can inspect the index to the registers
  • The details given in the births index may be helpful in themselves but they are usually used to find the details necessary for ordering a copy of a birth certificate
  • In particular, the births index gives you the 'GRO index reference' for each birth. The 'GRO index reference' consists of the details given in the volume and page columns for each birth entry
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Page last updated: 26th October 2011