Genealogical research startup supported by Inspiring Enterprise
Valentine and Kenneth Stacey
Rachel Stacey’s business, Archives and Family History Services, provides genealogical research for people in England, local history research and house history in Surrey. She was supported in the set up of her business by Inspiring Enterprise business advisor Paul Creeden.
Rachel explains more,
“Services I provide for individuals and corporate organisations may include fact checking, answering clients individual research requests by providing bespoke research, breaking down a brick wall, building family trees and helping people to discover their ancestors and the history of their properties.”
Rachel has also given talks and offered training to first-time genealogists. She also can collect documents in the Surrey and London area. With over 20 years’ experience in archives, research and historic records, she can carry out archival services for clients including cataloguing, document sorting, repackaging and document preservation advice.
Rachel also undertakes house history for her clients. This is Frank and Mabel Clarke’s house.
Journey to Inspiring Enterprise
Before deciding to start her own business, Rachel had worked on archiving documents dating back to the reign of Elizabeth I. She had successfully completed several cataloguing projects including maps and plans, chancery, deeds, letters, bonds and court records. So, she had a lot of experience in the discipline before deciding to start her own business. A conversation with her work coach at the job centre led her to the Inspiring Enterprise website and she was put in touch with Paul.
“I was really excited about starting my own business but there were lots of things I needed to put in place and learn before launching. I needed to know a lot more about about running a business. Previously, I had been employed in large organisations who had staff in several different departments to undertake many of the different tasks of the business. I did not have much experience in, for example, raising invoices and marketing campaigns. I had a lot of questions and didn’t know who to ask for the answers. This is where Paul came in!”
Support from Inspiring Enterprise
Rachel found the online courses that Inspiring Enterprise ran very useful and has kept the information for future use,
“I really enjoyed doing the courses which taught me so much from photography to finance. The courses were run by people who really knew and understood their subject and being able to ask them questions was really great. I found all the information really useful and have already put it into practice. I’ve also set up my own business folder and put in it all the advice I have received, so I can refer to it whenever I need to.
I also enjoyed meeting others who were on these courses and starting up their businesses, hearing their stories and being inspired by them.”
She also found that having Enterprise Specialist Paul on hand when starting her business was a tremendous help, knowing that she could ask any question and he was able to provide an answer that was tailored to her business needs.
“Starting your own business can sometimes leave you feeling overwhelmed and unsupported, but I did not feel this, as I could ask Paul and he would always help. Having someone to look at your idea to help and advise you on how to achieve your goals is invaluable and gave me a confidence in my own abilities that I would not have had.”
With her business now up and running and everything in place, Rachel has just got her first client with many more people expressing an interest in using her services.
“There are lots of people who want to know more about the family history and I am looking forward to helping them to discover their ancestors.”
Her future plans are to expand the services she can offer her clients,
“To continue the success of my business I would like to branch out into parts of south-west London for house history clients. I plan to expand my skills and services so that I can help many more people discover their own family history.”
Rachel’s top tip for future entrepreneurs
“Don’t be afraid to ask questions or seek out help and support when you need to and have faith in your own ability to achieve all your future goals.”
WSX Enterprise Ltd is a business support organisation delivering a range of start-up, business growth and digital skills projects across the UK.
Their Inspiring Enterprise project ran from 2016 until 2023 in Hampshire and Surrey. Our team of experts advised, mentored and supported over 1000 people to find a better future by moving them into self-employment, employment or training.
The project is currently not taking any new enquiries and will finish in April 2023.
It was funded by the National Lottery Community Fund and the European Union European Social Fund.