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Even the experts have been surprised by what some local residents have been able to discover about their past, at the City of Canterbury Bankstown’s local and family history service.
Council’s Local Studies and Family History Technical Specialist, Jennifer Madden, and Panania resident, Ann Hurst, have just discovered they share the same great-great-great-great grandparents.
"My job is to assist residents in putting together their family – and I ended up adding a branch to mine," Ms Madden said.
"We’ve never met before, we don’t share a family name or have any similar looks – but she’s my distant cousin."
Family history workshops are being held at Bankstown Library and Knowledge Centre up to June and again from August to December. Discover Your Family Tree runs from 9.30am-12.30pm on the third Saturday of the month. Residents are required to book for a $5 session, where Ms Madden helps them navigate through the available resources to construct a family tree.
On the fourth Friday of the month, from 11.30am-1.30pm, Ms Madden hosts Local and Family History Drop-In sessions, when residents are invited to come in for a more casual discussion about their local area and building a family tree.
Mayor Khal Asfour said the family history workshops have already attracted more than 320 people.
"We’re seeing all kinds of interesting discoveries – from confirming family rumours to finding out ancestors have foreign cultural roots," Mayor Asfour said.
"We haven’t found anyone related to royalty yet but who knows."
For more information, or to book in for a Discover Your Family Tree workshop, visit cb.city/familyhistory or call 9707 9708.
20/03/2018 5:10 PM