THE Genealogy Show 2021: A Review

I spent a good part of Friday and Saturday attending sessions at a brand-new-to-me conference, THE Genealogy Show, normally held in London.

I wish I could say I just returned from London, my favorite city in the world because of its history, but with pandemic conditions continuing on, it wasn’t to be.

THE Genealogy Show 2021 went virtual and, at the extremely modest registration fee of £20, about $27.80 U.S., price drop – £15 or $20.75 U.S. (see Marian’s comment below), it was more than a bargain.

I loved the conference!

First, although the live conference has concluded, all the sessions remain ON DEMAND for one month. Access costs only £20 – notice that is the same price as the Early Bird registration before the conference began!

The website is extremely easy to navigate. The Home Hub is visually fun and makes it very easy to move from area to area:.

From left to right, the Community Room allowed attendees to meet up with each other and the presenters.

The Reading Room is a feature I’ve never seen before, but I really like it and wish other conferences would add it to their virtual sites. Genealogy bloggers could share posts and, while most of the bloggers were presenters, I saw at least one post by a familiar blogger who didn’t present at the conference.

The Wizards’ Corner, as one might guess, featured speakers who could answer questions and give some expert tips.

The Exhibition Zone featured about 50 exhibitors and, instead of being in the typical “expo hall” were in the Expo Neighborhood:

The tree house Games Room was home to a couple of genealogy-themed activities.

The Main Stage was the session schedule for 48 consecutive hours of live sessions!

The last stopping point at the Home Hub is one which should interest everyone for the next month. It is the On Demand platform.

Now that the 2021 live show has ended, it is no longer possible to live chat. However, all 48  sessions have been added to On Demand, which also houses several sessions recorded before the conference began.

I viewed a good number of sessions in the last few days. If you think there won’t be anything of interest to you because you don’t have many/any U.K. ancestors, you would be very wrong.

I have lots of British ancestors, but mine were pretty much all in the American colonies before 1650.

In spite of that, I found many interesting well-done sessions and learned all sorts of interesting social history tidbits and search strategies. Research methodology that works in one location can often be applied to many other locations, too.

I also enjoyed hearing talks by totally new-to-me speakers.

Here are a few of my favorites:

Evidence in Death by Fiona Fitzsimons

A Grand (Virtual) Tour of Scotland’s Archives by Alison Spring

Where to Look Online for Your Dutch Ancestors by John Boeren

An Introduction to Welsh Genealogy by Jenni Phillips

Negative Space: How Genealogy Gaps Can Help Your Tree Flourish by Dr. Sophie Kay

Jewish Genealogy Research in the Former Russian Empire by Lara Diamond and mtDNA by Mags Gaulden

Dear Me! Writing Research Reports to Yourself by Yvette Hoitink

My Ancestor Was a Liar by Dave Annal

Sessions ranged in time from about 25 minutes to 45 minutes.

There is a Speaker_Schedule_TGS_2021 with a list of all speakers and presentations that you can view before registering and being allowed to “enter” the show. Check out the schedule to see the wide range of topics in the sessions.

I loved this conference and believe the registration fee was very affordable. Where else will you be able to attend a two day, 48 session conference for less than $30?

I even chatted with a show rep and suggested that they consider a hybrid conference next year so that attendees aren’t prevented from attending by the cost to travel to London to attend in person. I was told that the organizers will consider that option.




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