From the office: A goodbye message from Claire Vaughan

By Deputy Editor, 16 February 2017 - 6:00pm

After nearly a decade working for Who Do You Think You Are? Magazine, deputy editor Claire Vaughan is leaving for pastures new. In her last ever blog post, she reflects on ten years of family history fun...

Claire Vaughan is acting editor at Who Do You Think You Are? MagazineThursday 16 February 2017
Claire Vaughan, deputy editor
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WDYTYA? 2016
Thanks to everyone who has chatted to me at Who Do You Think You Are? LIVE!

It’s a sad day for me today: I’m leaving Who Do You Think You Are? Magazine after almost 10 years to spread my wings and have some freelance adventures.

I’m very lucky. I’ve been paid to do something I really enjoy with a team and contributors who are a pleasure to work with.

I’ve also had the chance to write about something I’m really passionate about, talk to celebrities about their experiences on the show, break down some really persistent brick walls in my own family history and chat to some lovely readers about their research findings.

I joined the magazine back in late 2007 for issue 2, which featured Alastair McGowan on the cover. How things have changed since then – not only the appearance and content of the magazine but for family history itself.

There’s so much more online now to help armchair researchers – I’ve witnessed the British Newspaper Archive and the 1911 census come online while I’ve been here, plus the release of the 1939 Register and millions and millions of new parish records.

This morning, Sarah asked me what my highlights of the past decade have been. I suppose they include scooping an exclusive interview with JK Rowling about her experiences of making the show (albeit by email) and pulling an all-nighter to help get issue 11 to press on time when the new series that year was delayed at the last minute. We had just two days to find 24 new pages of copy!

But most of all, it's connecting with all those people who have shared their stories with me over the years for the Reader Story, Eureka Moment and Family Hero slots, or sent their queries into the Q&A section: a big, heartfelt thanks – it’s you who have kept me coming into work every day! 

While the thrill of the new is always alluring, there’ll always be a place in my heart for the past, so you may see my name crop up in the magazine from time to time.

But for now I’ll say goodbye and happy hunting!

 

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