My study of family history started more than 30 years ago when I began investigating my Tasmanian convict roots. From there I moved on to my Victorian, and NSW ancestors who were a mix of convicts and free settlers. In 1996 I began working as a volunteer at the Kiama Family History Centre. It was during my volunteer time that I studied for and gained my Advanced Diploma in Local, Family and Applied History through the University of New England, Armidale.
In 2006, after ten years volunteering experience, I took over the role of Manager of the Kiama Family History Centre as Kiama Municipal Council’s Family History Officer. In this fulltime role I supervised 30 volunteer research and indexing assistants. During my tenure the Kiama Family History Centre launched 9 indexes on CD and published 3 books. As the Family History Officer, I personally undertook all research projects. These projects varied from queries about local families to information about families who settled as far away as Canada and South Africa. The position allowed me to develop strong genealogical research skills, not only in Australia but throughout the UK, Ireland, New Zealand and parts of Europe. It also allowed me to develop friendships and contacts with other professional researchers in many other countries.
I resigned from my position as Family History Officer for Kiama Municipal Council in late 2019. In early 2020 I began operating my own genealogical consulting business. Since that time, I have been lucky to have found myself able to work consistently. I have undertaken research projects for people residing NSW, Qld, ACT, NZ and Scotland. The projects undertaken have seen me researching in Far North Qld, Tasmania, Victoria, Cornwall, London, Bedfordshire, locally in Kiama and as far away as Sicily, Italy.
I am the author of three books:
- Discovering Kendall’s Private Burial Ground Kiama
- Thomas Chapman of Hartwell House, Kiama
- Discovering the Wesleyan Methodist Churchyard Cemetery, Jamberoo