Searching for people

For general guidance visit Coronavirus (COVID-19) information, advice and guidance.

To follow any changes to this service, visit the Council Service Updates page.

Searching for lost friends and relations

It can be difficult to trace living persons. It will be easier if you know:

  • the person’s full name and date of birth
  • their last known address and when they lived there

There are some resources that the library service can help you access.

Electoral register

Individual printed electoral registers can be seen at Scunthorpe Central , with copies of the current register also held at Barton Library and Brigg Library. There is no index of voters. This limits their useful in tracing people, unless you know all or part of their last known address.

Telephone directories

Scunthorpe Central holds some printed UK directories, and any of our libraries can help you access online directories. You will need to have some idea of which part of the UK the person might be living in to use these effectively. Also, it is worth bearing in mind that many people do not use a land line, or choose to be ex-directory.


Traceline is a fee-based tracking service run by the UK Office for National Statistics.  They will not disclose information about a person’s whereabouts, but will forward a letter.  Application forms can be obtained from: Traceline, PO Box 106, Southport, PR8 2WA.  Tel: 0151 471 4811. The library service has no connection with Traceline, but can provide computer and printing access if you wish to type and print out a letter.


Please note that these are subject to change. There may also be other useful websites not listed here.

Births, marriages and deaths

General Record Office: you can order birth, marriage and death certificates to help you with your search.

FreeBMD: for long-lost persons, this ongoing project aims to transcribe the Civil Registration Index of births, marriages and deaths for the period 1837 to 1983. a database of UK telephone directories, births, marriages and deaths, and edited electoral registers from 2003.

Missing persons

Missing People: a UK charity which helps find missing persons.

LookupUK: a website offering advice and links to other databases, as well as a messaging facility.

Look 4 Them: a site bringing together multiple organisations, including the Salvation Army, to help or advise in tracing people.

Myoldmate: an interactive site that aims to put people back in touch with each other.

01724 860161

Scunthorpe Central
Carlton Street
North Lincolnshire
DN15 6TX

Monday: 9am to 5pm
Tuesday: 9am to 5pm
Wednesday: 9am to 7pm
Thursday: 9am to 5pm
Friday: 9am to 5pm
Saturday: 9am to 4pm

Closed on bank holidays