About the Researcher

Researcher, 2015

I was born Jill Ezard – ‘Cooke’ is my married name. My background is in English-language teaching, but after the loss of all my hearing I switched to proof-reading, copy-editing and writing; I have contributed to a number of magazines and my children’s stories have been published in The People’s Friend.  I  have also researched the history of a house that was once a village school (and before that the parish Poor House).

Having a 90dB hearing loss, I need sub-titles in order to follow the spoken word on video, film or TV. It is now also becoming an issue on the internet because the spoken word is used more and more – in hangouts, webinars, podcasts – but the provision of any kind of subtitling is patchy; at best, there may be auto-generated subtitles. If, though, the speaker’s diction is not clear, the result is gobbledygook.  The option of subtitles is what ‘access’ means for someone who is as deaf as me. So simple. So difficult to achieve.

I have an insatiable curiosity, good research skills, and great tenacity – all of which will be needed for this Study.

During the last few years, my own family history researches have revealed lines that are deeply rural and spread throughout England and Ireland – Dorset, the Isle of Wight, Somerset, Yorkshire, Wirral (Cheshire), and Co Limerick in Ireland. These folk were mainly farmers, labourers, and skilled artisans – wheelwrights, carpenters, joiners, builders.   That research is ongoing.

I have taken several online courses with Pharos Tutors and participate in the British Genealogy Forum.

I am a member of the Friends of the National Archives. As a ‘Friend’, I occasionally review books for The National Archives’ Online Bookshop. I also belong to the East Yorkshire Family History Society, and contribute to its Journal, The Banyan Tree; and to the Isle of Wight Family History Society, for the COOKE lines.

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