Sue Tomlinson's inspiring discovery proves that although female forebears can be tricky to find, it's not impossible.

After many, many years of hearing the story of my Grandma's twins, Violet and Patricia, whose birth and death dates no one knew, I have finally discovered their records on Findmypast. All I did know was they lived for about two weeks and my Grandad, who happened to be the village joiner/undertaker, made them each a little coffin when they died.

As they had not been baptised, they could not be buried in the village church yard but my Grandad made a makeshift grave for them nearby. No one had ever thought to check civil records as we were led to believe no registration was required then. It was my brainwave that made me think "surely they would need a death certificate?"

How I Found Them

I used the Births, Marriage, Deaths and Parish Records search facility, putting in the name Violet along with the surname Coatesworth. Then, hey presto, there they were. Violet came up as Violet D - I presumed the D for Doreen, so what was name of the other twin? And there she was - the next line down gave me the same details as Violet D but under the name of Patricia. From there, I looked at each entry individually. With the information I gained from Findmypast, I have ordered Violet's death certificate and will order Patricia's and both their birth certificates as soon as funds allow.

'Gran's Twins' are no longer a family story but real human beings with real names, birth dates and sadly death dates

I cannot begin to tell you how thrilled I am and that with so little effort I have validated their existence. 'Gran's Twins' are no longer a family story but real human beings with real names, birth dates and sadly death dates.

Ironically, I have twin girls as my gran did but mine survived and are now 36. They come with me sometimes to say hi to Gran's twins when we visit the site were they were buried.

What Have You Found?