You can apply for your own service records if you are, or have been, a member of the armed forces, or the records of someone who’s deceased if you’re eligible.​

Records date from 1920 and may include:

  • surname, first name, service number, rank and regiment or corps;
  • place and date of birth;
  • date they joined and left the armed forces;
  • date of death, if they died in service;
  • good conduct medals; and
  • details about their career, like the units they served in.

Note: Your request might be refused if it could harm the security or operations of the armed forces.

Apply for your own Service Records

In order to apply for your own service records, you need to be or have been, a member of the armed forces. This includes the Royal Navy (and Royal Marines), British Army or Royal Air Force.

There’s no fee.

All you need to do is to download and fill in a request for your own records (PDF, 64KB) and send it to the address on the form, alongside any supporting documents. 

If you need more information you can check the GOV.UK website

Apply for Someone Else's Service Records

If you want to apply for someone else’s records, for example the records of someone who’s deceased, you need to be their immediate next of kin or be  researching them.

These are the general conditions:

  • you’re their immediate next of kin, for example their spouse or parent;
  • you’ve got consent from their immediate next of kin; or
  • you have a general research interest – you’ll only have access to limited information, unless they died more than 25 years ago.

You will need to know the person’s full name, date of birth and service number and fill in 2 forms (a request form and a search form).

Request Form:

Search Form:

You’ll need to download and fill in the relevant form depending on whether the person was in the:

For most cases, there’s a fee of £30 for each form. You need to send this fee along with any supporting documents (like a death certificate).

If you were the person’s spouse, civil partner or parent at the time of their death (when there’s no spouse), you don’t need to pay a fee.

If you need more information you can check the GOV.UK website

Books about Genealogy