Monday 11 April 2016

New home for John Grenham's Irish Ancestors

Since announcing back in February that his weekly Irish Roots column and Irish Ancestors research database were to leave The Irish Times (see blogpost), genealogist John Grenham has succesfully re-established Irish Roots on his own website – – and has been busily working towards the relocation of the database. relocation has now taken place, and the database is live at

Note the addition of the 's' after 'http'.

John describes this as a soft launch. The process of shutting down the Irish Times/Irish Ancestors site will start next week and will continue in stages until mid-May, when that service will cease for good.

Until mid-May, the Irish Ancestors database on John's site will be completely free, with just registration required after a certain number of page-views.

After mid-May, a soft pay-wall will be in place, leaving most of the site free but requesting a small payment from heavy users.

"It's actually a relief to be leaving the Irish Times site," John told Irish Genealogy News. "For the past few years, I was a bit of an anomaly and the Irish Ancestors site was neglected, with outdated software and a very old-fashioned payment and subscription model that kept most of the really useful parts hidden behind hard pay-walls.

"It's been good to get the chance to rebuild the whole thing from the ground up and expand and improve some features, especially the listings of newspapers, wills and GRO records. I have to say it's been pretty intense – I had to cram 18 years of coding into five months – but at least the thing is now out of commercial limbo. Though I have no idea whether its next destination is commercial heaven or commercial hell."

Drop by. The site obviously looks a little different, but is still recognisable, easy to navigate and crammed with helpful tools, maps and directional aids.