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Ancestry in West Lothian

West Lothian is a place full of history and heritage. Begin your ancestral journey here.

  • Overview
  • Key info
  • Getting There

West Lothian is a place steeped in history; discover your roots in our beautiful county.

This year is the perfect time to come home to the land of your forefathers as Homecoming Scotland 2014 offers a year-long programme of events to help you discover the tales of your ancestors and meet local Scots and clansmen from around the world.

Track down your family clan tartan, touch the walls of your family castle, or see if your ancestors were listed in the Poor Law records- a reminder that not all Scots were living the high life! Take that first step to exploe your past and your Scottish homecoming. Don’t just learn about your Scottish heritage- live it!

Here are some things you didn't know about West Lothian:

- James "Paraffin" Young set up the world's first oil refinery in Bathgate in 1850
- The annual Riding of the Linlithgow Marches is a tradition that dates from the 14th Century when the trade guilds checked that the burgh boundaries were intact
- the newly restored King's Fountain at Linlithgow Palace, which dates from 1538, is Britain's oldest surviving fountain

Our local towns & villages are steeped in history- find out what links your family had to them through some of our resources.

The best starting point for doing your family history is the West Lothian Local History Library. It has masses of resources to help you dig up your family tree.

West Lothian has a wide range of museums that will tell you more about what your ancestors did and how they lived.

If you need help with your research, why not get in touch with one of our ancestral consultants or contact the West Lothian Family History Society- a great resource for anyone interested in Ancestry.

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Ancestral Consultants

  • Linlithgow

We can help you discover your Scottish Ancestors.

Bennie Museum

  • Bathgate

The Bennie Museum opened in 1989 as a museum of Bathgate’s history and life. It has been commended by the Association of Scottish Visitor Attractions.

Local Community Museums

West Lothian Council Museums Service cares for and displays a wide range of local historical objects

Visit West Lothian, Civic Centre, Howden South Road, Livingston, West Lothian. EH54 6FF UK Registration No. SC346843

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