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  My ancestor was a ratepayer

Valuation Rolls
Valuation rolls have been compiled in Scotland since at least the early 17th century, but, until 1855, they listed only the leading landowners in each parish.
From 1855 until 1974 Assessors’ offices in each county and royal burgh in Scotland produced annual valuation rolls, listing almost all occupied properties in each parish and burgh. The rolls include the description of the property, what kind of property it was (e.g. dwelling house, shop, warehouse, hospital etc), the name of the owner, the name of the tenant (if the property was let), and, in some cases, the name of other occupants (if the property was sub-let, for example). Until the mid 20th century the rolls also included the occupation of most tenants and occupiers. Valuation rolls for the whole of Scotland are held by the National Archives of Scotland from 1855 onwards. Some local authority archives and local studies libraries hold less comprehensive runs of rolls for particular counties and burghs; usually from about 1890 onwards, but in some cases from earlier. One major exception is the case of Lanarkshire, for which very few rolls survive locally and most Lanarkshire valuation roll enquiries therefore end up at the National Archives of Scotland.

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The text above is a summary of a longer article on valuation rolls in the SCAN Knowledge Base. You can read this by clicking here.

The Knowledge Base also contains answers to Frequently Asked Questions. Click on one of these for an answer compiled by Scotland's archivists, or click on the Knowledge Base for a wider selection.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Are valuation rolls useful for family history?

2. What is the difference between a valuation roll and a voters' roll?

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