From 1692 until 1955, when the Army Pensions Office moved away (now located in Glasgow), all Army pensions were paid from the Royal Hospital Chelsea hence all Army pensioners were known as Chelsea Pensioners. There are two categories of Chelsea Pensioner:
In-Pensioners: those who surrendered their Army Pension and were admitted as residents of the Royal Hospital Chelsea.
Out-Pensioners: those who lived 'Out', at home and abroad. All records for Out-Pensioners are held by the National Archives at Kew. If you find details of an ancestor in a Census it is a definite indication that he was an Out-Pensioner.
The Royal Hospital Chelsea has an archive of records of In-Pensioners from 1871 to the present date. Prior to 1871 all records are held at the National Archive, Kew.
The earlier records are limited to: Name, Number, Rank, Regiment, Date admitted to Royal Hospital, date of death, and in most cases, place of burial. From 1984 onwards a more comprehensive record is available.
For a small fee we are able to provide copies of these records to bona fide relatives of In-Pensioners. Included will be “A Guide to Tracing Chelsea Pensioner Ancestors” to assist you with further research.
On receipt of a stamped, addressed envelope and a cheque or postal order for the sum of £5, made payable to Chelsea Pensioner (RH) Ltd. we will proceed with your enquiry. Please note that we cannot deal with telephone enquiries.
Please send all cheques to:
Royal Hospital Chelsea
Royal Hospital Road