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Discover family and local history in Surrey libraries

Published: 15 March 2019

Local History Centres

Local history centres

Are you interested in your family history or finding out more about the local area? If so tap into libraries for help with your research, whether you're tracing the history of a house's ownership, researching your family tree or helping children with a school project.

Library drop in sessions

Some Surrey libraries have Family and Local History Centres and if you visit at a time when dedicated volunteers are there, they will be able to help and give advice on a range of topics including war time history, local landmarks and much more.

The libraries below have drop in sessions, please check the Local History Centres page for details of session times and topics covered.

  • Banstead
  • Cobham
  • Caterham Valley
  • Ewell
  • Horley
  • Redhill

Lots of help online too

If you're a library card holder, you can come in anytime, and use online tools such as Ancestry and Find My Past which hold millions of family history records, The Times archives, and the British Newspaper archive. These are all free of charge to help you with your research.

Local history collections

Viewable by appointment, Surrey libraries also have specialist collections of local history materials including original photographs, maps, books and other materials. You can view these collections in Redhill, Caterham Valley, Banstead, Ewell, Horley, Cranleigh and Lingfield libraries.

The Surrey History Centre in Woking is another great place to visit, as it houses an extensive amount of manuscripts which date back to the middle ages.

Want to help others trace the past? Have a look through the Library volunteering page on the Surrey County Council website.

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