...Making Your Past Look Pretty...

Caroline Rochford set up Heir Line Ltd. in 2009 along with her husband, Michael, and works as a genealogist, writer and designer for the company.

She helps Michael with the family history research packages, and enjoys nothing more than discovering long lost stories from the past.  This led her to write a series of books all about the quirky and fascinating discoveries she’s made during her career.  She approached a history book publisher, Amberley, with her proposal, and they signed her up!

Her first non-fiction book, “Great Victorian Inventions: Novel Contrivances & Industrial Revolutions”, is a fun and illustrated exploration of the weird, wonderful and long-forgotten inventions that were dreamed up in the 19th century.  Caroline’s follow-up, “Great Victorian Discoveries: Astounding Revelations and Misguided Assumptions”, is due for publication in April 2015, and both books are available to purchase worldwide through Amazon, Waterstones and other major bookstores.

Caroline is brimming with story ideas, and her work has even spread across the pond!  The American news website IrishCentral, which attracts 2 million visitors each month, recently commissioned Caroline to write for them.  Her first article is about her husband’s late grandfather, an ordinary young man who led an extraordinary life.

Read more about Caroline’s published books here.

When she’s not working on her history books, Caroline is heavily involved in writing the narrative reports for clients who wish to commission hourly research into their family history.  At the end of each block of hours, clients receive a personal, narrative report outlining Heir Line’s findings, along with an accompanying family tree, designed by Caroline.  So, for a perfect gift idea, why not commission Heir Line’s published author to write about your family’s ancestors?

With a first class degree in Graphic Arts and Design, Caroline also specialises in designing the Family History Storybooks. She can restore old and damaged photographs to their former glory, including colouring in black and white or sepia photographs!


Interesting Facts


Caroline Rochford (nee Brooks) BA (hons)



Place of Birth

Manygates, Wakefield, West Yorkshire


Caroline is three quarters English and a quarter Welsh.  Almost half of her mother’s ancestors came from Wakefield, so Caroline considers herself to be truly Yorkshire!  She has some fascinating Wakefield ancestors in her family tree, including councillors, master mariners, and sea captains.  They certainly had some amazing stories to tell, involving adventures in faraway lands, mutinies on the high seas, shipwrecks, and a terrifying accident when one of her ancestors fell from the crow’s nest and broke his back!  Unable to return to a life on the ocean waves, he joined forces with his landlubber brother, Joe Hargrave, (a compassionate Justice of the Peace and budding entrepreneur), and set up a thriving, high-class ladies’ clothes shop in Wakefield called Hargrave Brothers - very similar to the BBC’s The Paradise, or ITV’s Mr. Selfridge!  The building still stands today on Kirkgate, but is now a furniture store.  One thing that no longer exists is Hargrave Square, a street in Wakefield that was named after the influential Hargrave family; the landlords of the properties.  On the other side of her tree, most of Caroline’s relations were hard-working, humble coal miners from Wales back in the 19th century.

How far back her own tree goes

About 1594, when Rodulphus Harrison, her 11 x great grandfather, was born!


Leeds Metropolitan University

Academic lEVEL

Bachelor of Arts Degree (first class)

Favourite Book

Great Victorian Inventions: Novel Contrivances & Industrial Revolutions... of course!

Favourite Hobby

When she’s not writing, Caroline loves good food, ceilidhs, going to the theatre, and taking her dog for walks in the countryside.  She and Michael are currently busy renovating their first house, which has a large garden that the pair of them are looking forward to cultivating.  In a year or two they hope it will be in full bloom, brimming with trees of a different kind, and home to lots of wildlife!

Email: caroline@heir-line.co.uk          Tel: 01924 314363          Mob: 07525 192579

(c) Heir Line Ltd 2015

Registered company number 06527525.  Registered in England.  Registered Office: 6 Denhale Avenue, Wakefield (near Leeds), West Yorkshire, WF2 9EF

...Making Your Past Look Pretty...

Using all available sources, Michael and Caroline will do all they can to offer you the highest quality family history services.

Their sources include (but are by no means limited to):

  1. Bullet Wills (Prerogative & Exchequer Courts and Probate Registries)

  2. ...How Things Work at Ancestry by Heir Line...UK & Irish Parish records

  3. ...How Things Work at Ancestry by Heir Line...International Church Records

  4. ...What Projects Does Caroline Work On?...Military records

  5. Archived newspapers

  6. 1841 - 1911 UK census returns

  7. 1851, 1901 & 1911 Irish census returns

  8. BulletPoll Books

  9. BulletLand Tax Returns

  10. BulletVisitations

  11. BulletPeerage Records (eg Burke’s Peerage, etc.)

  12. BulletGeneral Register Office records

  13. BulletHistorical and current Electoral Rolls

  14. BulletThe International Genealogical Index

  15. BulletInformation provided by living relatives

  16. BulletA collection of Historical Trade Directories

  17. BulletRelevant textbooks, and a huge collection of old, rare and antique books

  18. BulletNewsreels from the 1930s onwards

  19. BulletHistorical maps

Whatever your requirements, contact Ancestry by Heir Line for an informal discussion about your project.

...How Things Work at Ancestry by Heir Line...