Research appointments at PRONI
PRONI is open to the public by appointment only. You must request a research appointment and have received a booking confirmation from PRONI before your visit.
PRONI is open to the public by appointment only.
Bookings for new appointments will open every Monday at 1pm.
Requesting a research appointment at PRONI
PRONI is currently operating a limited onsite public service. Advance booking is one of a number of changes to PRONI services which have been put in place to protect the health and safety of staff and visitors during the ongoing Coronavirus (COVID 19) pandemic.
You can request a new research appointment at PRONI (to view original records/microfilms) using the procedures below. Bookings for new appointments will open every Monday at 1pm. You must request a research appointment at PRONI and have your booking confirmed by PRONI before your visit.
You must be a registered PRONI Visitor in order to access records during a research appointment.
If you are already a registered Visitor, you will need to bring your PRONI Visitor Pass to your research appointment. If you are a new visitor you will need to register for a PRONI Visitor Pass (remember to bring photographic ID on the day of your appointment). If you are a registered visitor but have lost your PRONI Visitor Pass, you will need to request a new one when you arrive for your appointment, even if you can remember your Visitor Number (note there is a £10 charge for replacement of lost Visitor Passes).
Bookings for new appointments will open every Monday at 1pm. Appointment slots are made available six weeks before a visit. Appointment slots are available to request on a first-come, first-served basis.
PRONI has now returned to an on-demand (onsite) document ordering service. This means that you are no longer required to provide record references when you are requesting a research appointment. You can order an unlimited number or records onsite during your research appointment. You will be able to request a maximum of FIVE items at a time. You can order additional records once you have returned records in your possession to Issue Desk.
Whilst staff will be available to offer advice and guidance on using the onsite ordering system, interaction will be limited in line with social distancing protocols. In order to make the best use of your time at PRONI, you should use the eCatalogue and relevant guides and leaflets to identify material and note down record references you are interested in before your visit.
Watch our video ‘how to’ guide on using the PRONI eCatalogue for information including how the PRONI eCatalogue is structured, searching and browsing and identifying item level record references. You can also book a place on an online ‘preparing for a research appointment at PRONI’ workshop. These will be running regularly and will explain the appointment request system, how to use the eCatalogue, and will also include a Q&A session if you have a particular query.
You should contact PRONI (by email/letter) before requesting a research appointment if:
- a record you want to view is marked as 'closed' for public access
- a record you want to view is not catalogued to 'item' level
The Public Search Room is open. When you arrive for your research appointment, you will be allocated a table number at reception. This is your table number in the Reading Room and the table number in the Search Room where an allocated document ordering PC will be available for your use during your visit.
You should go to the Search Room first, where you can place orders for the records you wish to use. Your assigned number will be displayed on the overhead screens throughout the building once your records are ready for collection at Issue Desk (in the Reading Room). Note that some records you request may be unavailable for consultation during your visit for a number of reasons, for example, they may be physically unfit for production or be held offsite.
Self-service access for microfilms previously available via this facility (i.e. church records, registry of deeds index etc) has returned to the Search Room. The number you are assigned at Reception also refers to your allocated microfilm reader for the day.
Staff will be available at the Help Desk in the Search Room to help you identify your allocated ordering PC/microfilm reader, and to answer any queries on using any of the facilities onsite.
Printed reference material is available in the Search Room. Access is also available to TWO General Register Office of NI (GRONI) search PCs, TWO internet accessible PCs (with access to PRONI’s subscription to Find My Past and other subscription sites), and TWO microfilm reader/printers. These resources are communal and will be available on a first-come first-served basis, however in consideration of other visitors we would ask that you do not use any of these machines for longer than 30 minutes at a time.
Disinfectant wipes will be available alongside the communal machines, and you are urged to wipe down touch points before and after use.
Each appointment is for one registered visitor only. You will not be able to bring anyone with you unless they book a separate visit themselves on the same day.
Research facilities are located on the first floor of the PRONI building. You can use the lift (one person at a time to allow for social distancing) or stairs to access the first floor. If you have a disability or injury which would prevent you from using the stairs to exit the building during an emergency evacuation, record this in the field provided on the appointment request form. A member of PRONI staff will contact you to discuss your requirements and can locate your research appointment on the ground floor if appropriate.
PRONI will confirm your appointment date and arrival time.
Submitting a request form does not constitute a booked appointment until you have received a confirmation email from PRONI and been given an arrival time.
The PRONI building will be open between 10.00am and 4.00pm and you will be allocated an arrival timeslot between 10.00am and 11.20am to maintain social distancing. You can arrive any time after your allocated arrival time, however avoid coming earlier as you may be asked to wait. Your appointment will last for the whole day, however documents must be returned to the Issue Desk no later than 3.30pm.
You must inform PRONI if you wish to cancel an appointment, even if that is on the day of your scheduled visit.
If you or anyone in your household experience COVID 19 symptoms or receive a positive COVID 19 test result, you should not visit PRONI for your appointment. Inform PRONI that you will not be attending your appointment at your earliest convenience.
The limited number of appointments at PRONI are in high demand, so be considerate of others. We may be able to re-allocate early cancellations to other visitors.
Failure to inform PRONI that you will not be attending a confirmed visit may result in cancellation of future appointment requests.
Attending a research appointment at PRONI
On the day of your visit, adhere to your allocated arrival time as closely as possible. This will help with social distancing between you and other visitors.
When visiting the PRONI building you will be required to wear a face covering at all times, except when eating/drinking refreshments at one of the tables provided on the ground floor.
We would remind you to practice good hand hygiene and wash your hands regularly.
See changes to PRONI services for further information before your visit.