Thursday, February 24, 2011

Audrey Collins

Audrey Collins at The Planetarium
Another foreign visitor to the Rootstech Conference with whom I shared a glass of wine was Audrey Collins, Family History specialist at The National Archives (TNA) at Kew. I first had a chat with Audrey at the evening function at the Planetarium where she told me of some of the changes that had been introduced at TNA to make it more user-friendly since my visit in the early 2000s. As I am planning another visit in July this year I was keen to hear about these innovations. I had a number of chats with Audrey over the next few days and must say that I enjoyed the open, friendly, down-to-earth nature of this VIP in the genealogy world. We didn't just talk about genealogy but about families, kids and travel, Audrey is a gifted and amusing storyteller. 
Although she has no English ancestry Audrey is an expert in English genealogy. I discovered, when we were playing Jeopardy at Dinner with Dick after the conference, from one of her interjections that Audrey is actually a Scot.

Before she joined The National Archives (TNA) Audrey was a professional genealogist. She regularly records podcasts for TNA She has written a number of books on aspects of English genealogy, and contributed to several magazines.

Audrey's blog, The Family Recorder, where she writes about "that interest or amuse me, and that I think are worth sharing. They might be topical, or 'cold case', educational or trivial; the only rule is that they will have something to do with genealogy, is one of the favourites on my reading list.

While she was in Salt Lake City Audrey recorded a tutorial for the FamilySearch website and gave a talk at The Family Hisotry Library to library staff and the public. "Having heavily used FamilySearch resources free of charge for over 20 years, whenever I am in Salt Lake City I like to give something back."

POSTSCRIPT. Chris Paton of Scottish Genes has just posted to Youtube a video interview he made with Audrey at the WDYTYA Live event in the UK last week. I am posting the video here so you can see and hear Audrey.

1 comment:

  1. Audrey is a wonderful person. I had the pleasure of hearing her speak and talking with her when she visited the Fairfax Genealogical Society and gave a few presentations.
    Theresa (Tangled Trees)