You’re warmly invited to come along to the Mint Methodist Church Community Centre in central Exeter on Saturday 16 September 2023 for “Passing Through”.

This is an informal drop-in that’s free and everyone’s welcome. It’s your opportunity to meet others with an interest in the family history, culture and heritage of Romany, Traveller, Fairground and Circus people plus Devon family history and family history for other counties – and indeed other countries!

There will be: 

• RTFHS publications and other books for sale
• Displays – Gypsy Occupations, Life with the Waggon Horse, West Country Romany and Fairground People and more
• Family history research helpdesk
• A team from the Devon Family History Society to give you the benefit of their local knowledge and unique indexes plus publications for sale
• Opportunities to chat about your Travelling ancestors and perhaps meet new ‘cousins’
• A visit by RTFHS member Anne Stevens, author of A Search For The Scotts & Circus, one of the new books on the RTFHS bookstall 
• Family activities
• Traditional music – so please bring along your stepping shoes!


• A team from the Exeter FamilySearch Centre will help you with your family history questions across the British Isles – and the world
• A prompt sheet called “Tell me when…” to help you interview relatives about their family history and record their answers
• “Who do you look like…?”: bring along ancestors’ photos on a memory stick and take a selfie to see if there’s a family resemblance. We can enhance old photos for you too
• “How far have you travelled today…?” Let us have your postcode at the Welcome Desk and let’s see who has come the furthest
• “How many generations are with you here today…?” Tell us at the Welcome Desk
• Quiz: pick up a sheet from the Welcome Desk and see if you can find all the questions among the stands
• Helpdesk look-ups from the ever growing RTFHS indexes, a full set of the RTFHS journal “Romany Routes” and other reference books
• Helpdesk look-ups using the usually paid-for family history sites such as Ancestry,, FindMyPast, MyHeritage, British Newspaper Archive, General Register Office etc
• Circus and fairground activities including learning how to juggle!
• And we’re delighted to say that a traditional Gypsy van will also be on show in the Mint car park, courtesy of Kushti Vardos

We are proud to be taking part in the national Heritage Open Days (HODS) Festival this year. Please take a look at the HODS website to read more about our own event and to see the full calendar of other events that are taking place across the country.

See you there!