Early on, I was looking for the birth date of my great grandmother Maria Rawcliffe, who according to census returns was born c.1859. I contacted the local registrar for a certificate, and was over the moon to discover she shared her birthday - 15th January - with my own daughter - Maria's great great granddaughter. This had to mean something special!
On my husband's side, the Donaldson family of South Shields, there was a story that the family had Edinburgh connections, but the detail was vague. So I was delighted in tracing back through South Shields census returns to discover that Robert Donaldson was born in Leith, Midlothian, Scotland. This entry was a huge bonus as many entries just say "Scotland" under place of birth, without specifying the parish. Even better there was the coincidence that our daughter, Robert's 4-times great granddaughter, was then working in Leith.