Records of those who chose to naturalise as British Citizens

Naturalisations are at The National Archives which is in Kew (suburb of London). This the only place which holds naturalisation papers and certificates. They have these as part of their on-line catalogue. There is an index. Papers are filed as they are returned from the Home Office. This can sometimes be years after the naturalisation took place. Closure applies but you can ask the National Archive to open papers you wish to view. Members report a patchy service on this aspect of Naturalisations. It can take months for TNA to decide whether to release papers under the Freedom of Information Act. Often, if they do decide to open later papers (from the 1930s and 40s) they will only allow partial release. certain pages may be completely missing. Other pages may have words/paragraphs censored out.

I am reliably informed that the LDS has films of the National Archive naturalisations from which you can get an piece number. They are on microfilm numbers 8224514 and 824515. You can then contact the National Archive and get copies mailed to you.

This is just one small section from one page of a set of 1886 naturalisation papers. There are approximately 15 A3 sheets in the set. Naturalisations give details of date and place of birth. They also give dependant children, who were automatically naturalised along with the person naturalised. They give previous addresses. Not all papers survive. Sometimes certificates survive.

Maurice Hoffman advises us that: The primary source of all information on nationality is the Home Office, Immigration and Nationality Directorate,
India Building,
Water Street,
Liverpool L2 0QN
phone 0151 237 5200 fax 0151 237 5386
"These people will answer what I would call policy and procedures questions. They have answered questions for me on dual nationality and why wives are not included in the naturalisation papers sometimes but are naturalised."

Please note that children born in Britain (of foreign parents) had no need to naturalise. They were automatically British, unless they revoked the right and made a declaration of allegiance to their parents' country of origin. However, many people seemed not to know the law and so often British-born children were included in their parents' (father's) naturalisation papers.

Copyright by Sherry Landa & British-Jewry. All rights reserved.
This document last modified Sunday, 08-Feb-2015 22:59:57 GMT

Learn More:

B-J News 1 has an article on how to use TNA for these records.

How to obtain a naturalisation record: Search TNA catalogue.

Enter the surname in the top box and the code HO in the bottom box.

Enter a date range in the middle boxes if you wish.

Once you have your codes then visit TNA Online Ordering to order the document.

We have naturalisation information in two of our databases: COHEN Surname Lists

Ian Melville's List of Naturalisation Announcements in the JC 1902-1906.

Remember you need to register and Login to use our databases.

The London Gazette carried naturalisation notices: London Gazette Search.