British Nationality Research

To most people, the acquisition of British Nationality is pictured as being something achieved by long stay in the U.K. through the standard Naturalisation processes when in fact there are numerous ways of making a claim for a British Passport through your ancestry and in some cases by connections with former British Territories.

The British Empire once covered over one third of the World and British Nationality was acquired by the inhabitants of these countries by birth, descent and annexation. Whether such persons retained their British Nationality and/or became Citizens of the new countries when they attained independence was determined by the Constitution Legislation of the Country concerned and the British Independence Legislation and so claims can be quite complex.

If you were born in a country that is different to any of your parents or grandparents, OR you have a UK-born ancestor, then it is possible that you have a claim to British Nationality. We are particularly interested to hear from persons with connections by birth or descent from the following countries;

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  • The old colonies in the Caribbean
  • British territories in the Arabian Peninsula
  • Kenya (the Colony and the Protectorate)
  • Tanzania (Tanganyika)
  • Uganda
  • Malawi (Nyasaland)
  • Zambia (Northern Rhodesia)
  • Swaziland
  • Botswana (Bechuanaland)
  • Namibia
  • Zimbabwe (Southern Rhodesia)
  • South Africa

The following documents or scenarios are of particular interest:

  • Old British Passports for the ancestors concerned;
  • Certificates of Registration/Naturalisation as Citizens of the U.K. and Colonies for the ancestors concerned.
  • Birth Certificates showing those ancestors concerned being registered at the local British Consulate ( particularly South Africa )
  • Where grandparents are born in Territories with the Crown Dominions before 1/1/49 and the next generation are born in a place then described as a British Protectorate.
  • Where previous applications for British Passport facilities have been refused, even where such refusals have taken place many years ago.

Such claims are very complex to determine, and require specialist knowledge of old British Nationality Law and an examination of the Independence Day Constitution of the  countries concerned. Philip Gamble is widely regarded as the world’s leading specialist in the subject of British Nationality, and offers the following services to clients:

  • Status Trace (£350): This research is undertaken by Philip’s Nationality Team (for 350). The Status Trace involves an examination of your nationality documents (birth and marriage certificates, as well as old passports and other documents that can have a bearing on your nationality status). The Status Trace takes the form of a multi-page report written by our team of Nationality experts, and will give you a definitive Yes or No answer.
  • Status Trace FastTrack (+£300): The research and report is completed within 48 hours.

If you would like to take up any of these services, simply email for further information, purchase the service from your Results Page (after you register on the site), or purchase the service below.

Service Type