Kirsty is a professional genealogist and Heir Hunter who runs her own research company Family Wise Limited
. As a freelance author, she has published articles in family, local and social history magazines and handbooks across the globe. She has been researching the story of her paternal West Country family for many years and, having realised in the late 1990s that her eccentric hobby was called a surname study, co-founded The Surname Society (registering the Sillifant surname) in 2014 to meet the needs of surname studiers in the 21st century.
In 2011, Kirsty took over from Penny Christensen as Director of English Studies for the National Institute for Genealogical Studies, updating previous courses and expanding the provision for online genealogical research courses about English records.
Having published Tracing Your West Country Ancestors in 2013, Kirsty is now working on Tracing Your Industrial Ancestors with Pen and Sword Books and is a founder member and was initially Chair (now Secretary) of the Society for One-Place Studies, an international society for family and local historians.
Although a relative youngster in the field of genealogy, Kirsty has been involved in family history for almost two decades and has lectured on various stages from local to international. Having traded in her day job as a teacher to follow her passion, Kirsty is widely sought after as a family history tutor, lecturer and motivational speaker in the UK.