General Register Office indexes

Every birth, adoption, marriage, civil partnership or death registered in England or Wales has a General Register Office (GRO) index reference. It usually consists of the year, volume number, page number and district in which the event was registered.

If you need to order a copy of a birth, marriage or death certificate, the GRO may require an index reference.

Accessing GRO indexes

The Archives Centre provides access to the General Register Office's published indexes of births, marriages and deaths on microfiche.

Some early indexes can be searched online via FreeBMD or Visitors to City of Westminster Archives Centre can also search all indexes apart from the most recent ones through our subscription to Ancestry and FindMyPast on the Westminster libraries' family history page.

UK indexes

 

Dates

Provisional

Births Sep 1837 to 2014 Sep 2016
Marriages Sep 1837 to 2014  
Civil Partnerships 2005 to 2015  
Deaths Sep 1837 to 2014 Sep 2016

UK adoption records

We hold the indexes to adopted children 1927 to 2015. For further information, GOV.UK has helpful pages on tracing birth relatives.

Overseas indexes

These start earlier, as they contain many regimental and army chaplains' returns. Deaths include war deaths between 1914 to 21 and 1939 to 48.

  Dates
Births 1761 to 2014
Marriages 1796 to 2014
Civil Partnerships 2005 to 2014
Deaths 1796 to 2014

For opening hours and location details, please see our Visitor information page. Copies of the GRO indexes are also available in London at the British Library.

We do not have copies of the certificates. Once you have found the index reference for the certificate you require, you must order the certificate direct from the General Register Office.

Alternatively, for copies of Westminster, Paddington or St Marylebone birth, marriage or death certificates from 1837, visit the Westminster Register Office. To locate marriage certificates, the Register Office also requires the name of the building in which the ceremony took place.

Divorce records

We do not hold any records of divorces. Information on getting a divorce and locating divorce records can be found on GOV.UK and National Archives websites.

Accessing GRO indexes at other record offices and public libraries

If you're not local to Westminster, you may find that there is an index set available at a nearby local history centre or record office. To see a list of holders of the GRO indexes visit GOV.UK. Most public library services in the UK provide free access to the indexes via an online database subscription. Please contact your local library service for details.


Last updated: 4 January 2017
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