Family histories revealed

PUBLISHED: 06:13 22 June 2006 | UPDATED: 09:28 24 May 2010

PEOPLE will get the chance to find out who they really are this summer. Weston Family History Society is inviting members of the public to discover their roots on July 15. The success of the BBC2 series Who Do You Think You Are? means family history is mo

PEOPLE will get the chance to find out who they really are this summer.Weston Family History Society is inviting members of the public to discover their roots on July 15.The success of the BBC2 series Who Do You Think You Are? means family history is more popular than ever.Like the TV series, visitors to St Paul's Church Hall in Walliscote Road can expect to uncover some amazing facts about their ancestors.Historian Brian Austin, who founded the society in 1981, said "The programme has raised expectations about how quickly we can lay our hands on this information. I've traced my family tree back to 1187, and it's taken me 45 years to go back that far."Society member Anne Wolforth discovered that Richard Fry, her great-great-great-grandfather was the owner of the very first hotel in Weston in 1818. Called Fry's Hotel at the time, it is now the Royal Hotel in South Parade. In addition, her great-great-grandfather, Joseph James, built the low causeway to Knightstone Island in 1860 and headed a consortium that bought the island for £4,000.Society secretary Kerry James said: "What people find is a sense of belonging. After all, there's no friend like a relation. "It's a very good way of solving ridiculous problems - such as family feuds where one set of relatives don't speak to other members of the family but cannot remember why."The Weston Family History Society open day will run from 10am-4pm.

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