Leading UK family history website findmypast.com has completed its project to scan and index the complete set of outbound passenger lists for long-distance voyages from all British ports between 1890 and 1960.
Working in association with The National Archives of the United Kingdom, the project took a team of 125 people over a year to scan in the 1.1 million full colour individual pages - some handwritten, some typed. In total 24 million passengers are recorded travelling between these dates. Their reasons for travelling varied from emigration to diplomatic missions, to business trips or purely for pleasure.
The final decade to go live covers the years 1950 to 1960 and includes the so-called "Ten Pound Poms" travelling under the Australian government assisted passage scheme. In most cases the old UK address of the passenger is given, enabling family historians to trace back the roots of their British ancestors. Accompanying some of the 1960 lists are scans of the handwritten departure cards completed by each passenger. These show the full date of birth of the passenger as well as their UK address and occupation, with the names and dates of birth of any children travelling with them on the reverse - a goldmine for the genealogist.
There are also a number of famous people recorded travelling in the records during the 1950s. Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair can be found listed as Anthony Charles Lynton Blair travelling on the Iberia to Adelaide on 24 December 1954, aged one, while on 5 August 1958 the young Bee Gees are recorded emigrating with their parents on the Fairsea to Sydney.
All seven decades of the passenger lists are free to search at findmypast.com. The images and transcripts can be viewed with either a 12 month Explorer or a 1 month Voyager subcription to findmypast.com, or alternatively with pay-per-view units or vouchers.