In the past there have been a number of things that stopped me from taking that step. When I first started out, I had no idea of the FHL's existence. Then having discovered it, I felt a level of discomfort at the idea of using the result of someone else's religious beliefs and practices, which I don't share, in pursuit of a hobby. This is no reflection of the Family History Center in Canberra (or anywhere else for that matter) as I had heard only good things about them.
Having gotten over that feeling of timidity and even making a visit to the local Family History Center quite some years ago to check things out, I still never felt the need to order any film. I had plenty of material to be getting on with by post(!), at the National Library of Australia, and later on the internet.
More recently, a few factors have come together that have changed the situation for me:
- My loosely defined research goal is to follow the life of Elizabeth Tregonning (1858-1952). In looking for relevant sources I have found some that are most readily available to me via the Family History Library.
- I have only very recently discovered that I can have the films sent to my local genealogy society, which is ten minutes closer to home than the local Family History Center. It may not sound like much, but when negotiating with my husband about minding our two under-fives while I'm swanning about genealogising, an extra 10 minutes of travel time each way makes a big difference.
- Finally, the big one, I can order the films online. I think this is only possible in a few countries, so I feel very fortunate. It makes a huge difference because it saves me from making an extra trip in order to order the film in the first place (see point 2 above).