Talks, courses and tutorials are run by Katrina Friess.  Katrina has over 40 years experience as a family history researcher, consultant, speaker and teacher (Cert Ed qualified).  

To book or just enquire please contact us, we love to hear from you.  Our local area is Northamptonshire and the immediately surrounding areas.

Katrina can be contacted at  or on 07538 407267.




£150 per person for the full course payable in advance 

4 Weeks, 1 x 2 Hour session per week. Max 8 people per session. Includes free comprehensive  handouts. You will need to have reasonable competence in using the Internet. Practical workshop time is incorporated into each week.  You will learn everything you need to know to get started - and keep going - with your family history research.  The detailed handouts make an excellent resource to keep referring back to.
Week 1 - Gathering information, basic research protocols and strategies. The very beginning is you!  A bit about personal histories. Standard formats for recording data. Tips on talking to elderly relatives. Basic principles and practices of research
Week 2 - Using the three main sources - civil registration, census returns, parish registers. The background to each, how to use them, where to find them online etc
Week 3 - Other sources, website comparisons.  Looking at other records such as probate indexes and wills, newspapers etc.  Which websites are best for which purposes and how to use them (Familysearch, Ancestry, Find My Past ect).  What to do when you don't know what to do - how to get around those brick walls.
Week 4 - Data storage, how to organise your new tree and workshop.  Paper or computer? Online or offline? What is a gedcom? Final Workshop time- How are you doing? what difficulties are you having? working together to help you make progress. 



 £30 for one hour 

If you prefer a more individual approach, I can offer personal tutorials for one person or family either face to face or on Zoom.  Completely bespoke, we can cover whatever you want and need to from how to get started, how to move forward, something you are stuck on etc.  You can book as many sessions as you feel you need and as often or infrequently as you would like.



 Up to half an hour free introductory consultations

At Market Harborough Indoor Market where we have a stall every Friday and Saturday (with a few exceptions!).

On Fridays Katrina offers half hour slots for free basic advice.  These are introductory, one-off sessions to see if you would like to book onto a course or personal tutorials.  You will not be allowed to turn up every Friday!!!  She has her laptop with her and internet access so bring along your query or find out how to get started.  

Please book in advance by contacting Katrina on or 07538 407267. 



£60 for each hour or part thereof 

Most talks last 45 to 60 minutes  however if you want to fill the hour with two 30 minute talks that's fine.  Travel and digital or paper handouts (where the subject is relevant) are included, however, travel to venues more than 25 miles from Kettering will require a further payment of 30p per mile.  Questions and comments are always welcome during and after the presentation.  Talks are given with a PowerPoint presentation for visual aids. I have my own projector and screen.

I also like to set up a table to show some of the pictures we sell.

References from previous talks can be provided if you would like.

Subjects available:

  • What's YOUR hiSTORY? - About 50 minutes.  Recording a personal history and adding meat to the bones for your ancestors
  • Research Basics - About 60 minutes.  How to get started with your research 
  • The Familysearch website  - About 50 minutes. the largest worldwide online database... and it's free!
  • Brick Walls and how to get around them - About 45 minutes.  for those who have already started their family history.  Strategies for when you get stuck with your research
  • The 'Ag Lab' -  About 35 minutes.  A little about the humble agricultural laborer in our ancestry.
  • Care of the Poor  - About 40 minutes.  Focusing on the Victorian workhouse and putting it in context with pre and post provisions for the poor
  • Wills and probate indexes - About 30 minutes. Valuable sources for the family history researcher.  What's in them, where to find them.
  • Nonconformism - About 30 minutes. An overview of what records might be available, where to find them, how nonconformist were treated etc
  • Coming soon - domestic service, the two World Wars and military records.

If you would like a particular family history related talk on a subject that isn't listed, please feel free to enquire about it.