Family history

The Postal Museum is the definitive place to find out about past postal employees.

Many of the records held in our archives are of potential interest to family historians. Royal Mail Group is still one of the largest employers in the country, and with over 380 years of history it has had an impact on countless lives.

You can research your family history by searching the appointment records online at Ancestry.co.uk. You can also find more information, in the sections below, on the kinds of records you can find here. You can download our Family History Research Guide (PDF) which gives more specific information on the range of records for genealogical research. This guide is also available in hard copy in the archive’s Discovery Room. If you would like to research your family history in person in the archive, you can do so by making an appointment to visit the Archive.

If you are not able to visit the archive, we also offer a paid Family History Research Service. We will do the research for you and send you a research report on each person, detailing our findings and including printed or digital copies of any relevant records. The fees for the service are:

  • Appointment Books: £5 per person researched.
  • Pension records, Establishment Books and staff magazines: £40 per person researched (covers two hours of research).
  • Appointment Books and pension records, Establishment Books and staff magazines: £45 per person researched.

If you would like us to carry out the research for you, please print and complete a Research Services Order Form (PDF) and send it to us at the address on the form.

  • Sources for family history

    Have a relative who worked for the Post Office? We have a range of sources that could help your research.

    Read more
  • Historical Post Office roles

    Not all Post Office employees were Postmen. The Post Office employed staff in a variety of roles, from Messenger Boy to Packet Boat Captain.

    Read more