National Records of Scotland

Preserving the past, Recording the present, Informing the future

Registration Districts

Registration Districts

In 1855 Scotland was divided into 1028 registration districts based on the civil parishes. This number rose to 1082 in 1910 but the number has fallen significantly in the 21st century.

Registrars were appointed in each district to maintain the registers of births, deaths and marriages. Two copies of each register were kept, one being held locally and the duplicate being sent to the Registrar General for Scotland in Edinburgh.

Each registration district has a unique reference number. 

Registration District Guide

This registration district guide contains lists in alphabetical and numerical order of all registration districts in Scotland with the dates during which each was operative. It is based on the General Register Office for Scotland publication 'The registration districts of Scotland from 1855' (known as the blue book).  It lists all changes up to January 2009 combined with the references and earliest dates for the 901 Old Parish Registers from 1553-1854.

The blue book had appendices showing the registration districts for the cities. Scanned copies of those pages are made available here in portable document format (less than 180Kb). PDF files require Acrobat Reader. Download Acrobat Reader free Get Acrobat Reader