Ryan, Catherine


Ryan, Catherine

Local and family historian

  • Buildings/Locations research, Communities research, Individuals/Families research
  • Barnard Castle, County Durham
  • Updated 2 months ago


I grew up in a home where family stories were often told.  As I grew older it seemed natural to start researching my family history.  My interest and desire to learn led me to read widely on the subject and to joining societies, both locally and nationally.

The chance to obtain formal qualifications happened when I took early retirement from my teaching career.  The MLitt degree from Dundee University was both rewarding and gave a thorough grounding in genealogy and local history.  I continue to attend training days and study online courses, as I know that there is always more to learn.

I am based in the Pennine hills of Northern England offering property and family history research in archives and online.  I have particular expertise in the North Riding Registry of Deeds which was inaugurated in 1736.  These documents often contain details of family relationships amongst property owners from well before civil registration in the UK. This archive is not (and probably never will be) digitised and has to be consulted at North Yorkshire County Record Office.

My other specialism is in the borderlands between North Yorkshire and County Durham which can be a tricky area to research because of changing civil boundaries, further complicated by differences with ecclesiastical boundaries and poor law unions covering parishes in both counties.

I also have experience of researching families in many of the northern counties of England, including Northumberland, Cumberland, Westmoreland, Lancashire and the West Riding of Yorkshire.

I write articles on my research for publication and give talks to local history societies.

I’m an experienced, qualified teacher and offer advice and schemes of work to UK-based teachers and home-schooling parents who want to incorporate local and family history into the curriculum.



  • Genealogy
  • Local History
  • North Yorkshire County Durham and Cumbria
  • Property History
  • Transcription of Old Documents


  • June 2019
    MLitt Family and Local History at University of Dundee
  • June 1992
    PGCE at Charlotte Mason College


To contact this candidate email catherineryan@qualifiedgenealogists.org

Contact using webmail: Gmail / AOL / Yahoo / Outlook