The National Archives does not hold records that will help you to trace a living person but this guide provides some brief advice on other institutions that may be able to help. The advice is not intended for tracing long-lost ancestors or people who were adopted.
Where to go for records and advice
There are many organisations that may be able to help you to trace somebody. Some are covered in this guide, but there are many others.
Birth and marriage records
Go to GOV.UK to find out where to search birth, marriage and death indexes.
If you know what area a person lives or lived in you may be able to find their address in an electoral register.
Missing people websites
- Go to look4them.org.uk, a joint website of eight of the main UK organisations involved in tracing people who are missing.
- Go to cyndislist.com/finding.htm, a portal site with links to a large number of other sites around the world concerned with finding missing people.
- Go to missing-you.net, a website for people searching for lost relatives, where you can also post messages.
You could try employers’ records, as many companies have their own archives and may be willing to deal with enquiries.