Our Featured Meetings

Our meetings are usually held on the 1st Wednesday of the month. Whilst these meetings have been arranged, it may be that Covid-19 regulations could change at any time. Please check here before travelling to find out about times and safely requirements for the meeting.

Researching Criminals in Bolton, by Dr Alan Crosby

An ancestor mentioned in the quarter-sessions? How can we find out more about our (possibly) criminal ancestors in Bolton, what records are available and where do we find them? Dr Alan Crosby will enlighten us about Bolton's criminal past.

  • Date: February 2021 (to be confirmed)
  • Venue: Bolton Old Links Golf Club
  • Speaker: Dr Alan Crosby
  • Booking: to be advised
  • Cost: Free to members*

Local Cotton Industry, by Dr Victoria Coyle

A talk about local industry is always welcome, and Dr Victoria Coyle will tell us about our local cotton industry, who owned the mills, what did they produce and what made it different from the other mill towns in area. What was special about Bolton.

  • Date: March 2021 (to be confirmed)
  • Venue: Bolton Old Links Golf Club
  • Speaker: Dr Victoria Coyle
  • Booking: to be advised
  • Cost: Free to members*

The North West Quaker Story, by Gordon Benson

Perhaps it was the remoteness of parts of the North West that cultivated a free spirit, a radical thought, the belief that was a different way to do things. The story of the Quakers in the North West, their lives and times of hardship and struggle.

  • Date: April 2021 (to be confirmed)
  • Venue: Bolton Old Links Golf Club
  • Speaker: Gordon Benson
  • Booking: to be advised
  • Cost: Free to members*

Where we meet

Our Meeting Rooms

We hold our meetings at the Montserrat Room, [First Floor], Bolton Old Links Golf Club, Chorley Old Road, Bolton, BL1 5SU. There is ample seating and also room for a helpdesk, and a stationery (for sale) table. Coffee and tea is available and the bar is open. The room opens at 7-00pm for the helpdesk and meetings start at 7.30pm.

Our Venue

Bolton Old Links Golf Club has ample car parking facilities but access to the first floor is by stairs only. The venue is easy to get to by car and meetings are always popular and well attended.

Important Things to Know


At present all our meetings are cancelled. We hope that the situation will change and that we can hold our early 2021 meetings as planned and reschedule the meetings listed below that were planned for 2020.


We may have to introduce a booking system when meetings resume, partly to ensure social distancing and to accord with any regulations that may be in force in the months to come.

Check first

As bookings are confirmed we shall provided dates for the meetings. Please check these pages and social media before travelling to ensure that the meetings are able to proceed as planned.

About Our Meetings

Bolton FHS meetings are usually held at 7.30pm on the first Wednesday of the month in the

Montserrat Room, [First Floor],
Bolton Old Links Golf Club,
Chorley Old Road,
Bolton, BL1 5SU

The Society is a friendly group who are happy to welcome visitors [entrance fee £3, refunded if you join the Society on the night] and ALL members of the MLFHS.  Tea / coffee [£1] is available from 7.00pm, as are drinks from the bar.

The talk starts at 7.30pm. There is a table of free information/advice leaflets and old genealogy magazines and facilities to purchase stationery and various publications, and we have a Help Desk before and after every talk.

Meetings 2020 - Archive

The programme of meetings for 2020 was suspended due to the Coronavirus emergency. The planned meetings that were scheduled are listed here,

River Shannon, Limerick: Hilary Hartigan

Irish Research - Carol Wells

Carol Wells is a senior member of the MLFHS who has many years of experience of researching Irish Ancestry using both traditional archives and online resources. Carol's talk will focus on how to use the online resources, how to optimise searches and how to use the Griffiths Valuations with maps to locate rural homesteads.

  • Date: to be rescheduled
  • Venue: to be arranged
  • Speaker: Carol Wells
  • Booking: to be advised
  • Cost: Free to members, £3 to non-members*


Bridgewater Canal, Worsley: Hilary Hartigan

Bridgewater Canal and Bolton Mines - Alan Davies

Alan Davies has studied extensively the Bridgewater Canal and the Bolton Mines and will talk to us specifically about the more recent history of the canal - from 1960 onwards - and the discoveries that have been made and the changes that have taken place.

  • Date: to be rescheduled
  • Venue: to be arranged
  • Speaker: Alan Davies
  • Booking: To be advised
  • Cost: Free to members, £3 to non-members*


Snowdonia from Beaumaris: Hilary Hartigan

Researching your Welsh Ancestors - Gill Rossini

Gill Rossini is a writer, historian and university lecturer who has a particular interest in Welsh genealogy, but is passionate about social history and has also written, amongst other subjects, a history of women's lives in Liverpool.

  • Date: to be rescheduled
  • Venue: to be arranged
  • Speaker: Gill Rossini
  • Booking: To be advised
  • Cost: Free to members, £3 to non-members 

Bolton Town Hall: Bolton FHS

Researching Illegitimate Ancestors - Anna Watson

How can we find out more - or anything at all - about our ancestors who were born out of wedlock? Anna Watson is a retired archivist who worked at Lancashire Archives and is the perfect person to tell us what is available, where to start looking and how to find out as much as possible about those children labelled 'illegitimate' at birth.

  • Date: to be rescheduled
  • Venue: to be arranged
  • Speaker: Anna Watson
  • Booking: To be advised
  • Cost: Free to members, £3 to non-members*

Bolton School: Bolton FHS

Researching School Records - David Tilsey

School records hold a wealth of information from dates of admission and departure and visits from nurses to a daily record of school activity. We have invited David Tilsley, an arichivist at Lancashire Archives to tell us all about the school records available in Lancashire, where to find them, and what they might tell you about your ancestors.

  • Date: to be rescheduled
  • Venue: to be arranged
  • Speaker: David Tilsey
  • Booking: To be advised
  • Cost: Free to members, £3 to non-members*

Spinningfields in December: Hilary Hartigan

Christmas Supper - cancelled

At the time of writing, all events such as a pre-Christmas gathering and Christmas supper are unlikely to happen in 2020. If this remains the case, then perhaps we can arrange something a few months later - or book early for 2021! Along with the rest of the world, we shall have to wait and see. Meanwhile, keep safe and keep well. The image, of Deansgate, Manchester, is - sadly - not representative of our festivities in Bolton, either, we can only say: "Season's Greetings to you all".


*ALL meetings by all parts of the Society are free for members of the MLFHS. Visitors who join the Society after the meeting will have their £3 entrance fee refunded.



DNA & Genealogy - Rod Brackstone - March 2020

Mass observation – Worktown, David Burnham January 2020

GENUKI - The free virtual reference library - Phil Stringer - Sep 2019

Probate records - wills bring out the worst in people - Anna Watson - May 2019

Non-Conformist Research Notes - Jackie Depelle - April 2019

Pre-Registration Scottish Research - Mark Campbell - March 2019

Scottish Heritage Day handout - Anglo Scottish FHS - May 2019

List of Bolton names connected with the Peterloo Massacre

Scottish Family History Research - Mark Campbell - February 2018

"Buddles and Bear baiting" talk sources - Dr Alan Crosby - January 2018

Prisoners of War, useful websites - Tony Foster - November 2017

Bolton War Memorials (Lost and Found) - Julie Lamara - October 2017

Wills and Probate revisited - David Lambert - September 2017

Conscientious Objectors - Talk Notes - Slides, Barry Mills - August 2017

The Bolton Massacre bibliography - David Casserley - June 2017

Parish register on the Internet - Brenda Hustler - Sept 2016

Newspaper websites - Richard Heaton - May 2016

Bolton School 500/100 - Dr. Jenni Hyde - July 2015

H. H. Munro, A Soldier's Biography - John Marsden - May 2015 Also see the Society's Research Guides "Researching WW1 Soldiers" and "WW1 Absent Voter Lists" which can be found on the MLFHS pages under the Information tab / Research Guides.

Catholic Records - Jim Lancaster - April 2015

Irish Genealogy - Brenda Hustler - June 2014

More Irish Research advice Xmas Quiz Answers 2015

Xmas Quiz Answers 2017 Xmas Quiz Answers 2018

Xmas Quiz Answers 2019