The HRE project

History Research Environment is a community project to create a free and open source platform-independent application for the serious or professional historical researcher.

The project consists of a volunteer community of software designers, programmers, historians and genealogists who work together to define and create the HRE software. The community is supported by a not-for-profit company, History Research Environment Limited, which acts as the signatory for any project contracts, and holds project funds.

The project is entirely non-profit and volunteer-based, and we have no paid employees. The directors of History Research Environment Limited are likewise volunteers.

Lead contributors

Robin Lamacraft

Robin Lamacraft portrait

Robin, from Adelaide, Australia, is the primary instigator and architect of the HRE Project. He has been a user of TMG from 1993, was Adelaide TMG User Group Leader 1998-2007 and is an expert in Visual Chartform. He has 40+ years experience of software development, mainly in statistics and operations research in industrial settings.  He now chairs History Research Environment Limited.

Michael Erichsen

Michael Erichsen portrait

Michael Erichsen lives near Copenhagen, Denmark.

Michael has over 35 years of computing experience, working for customers on 6 continents in areas like development, operations, systems programming, tools and methods support, technology advice, and solutions architecture using everything from assembler and COBOL over C to Java. He has about 20 years of Java experience and many years of Eclipse experience. He has always been deeply interested in history, and over the last fifteen years has had genealogy as a time-consuming hobby, using TMG and Second Site.

Don Ferguson

DON_FERGUSONDon is from Melbourne, Australia. He has been engaged in IT in programming, software support, technical leadership and consulting for 40+ years, as well as being active in local genealogy groups and the TMG-Refugees list. He is currently secretary of History Research Environment Limited.


Paquita Lamacraft

Paquita Lamacraft

Paquita works with Archer Business Group as a catalyst to creative thinking in designing strategy. With a life spent working around the world, Paquita captures a sense of place on her own website: discover-interesting-places. An author and public speaker,  Paquita works with a wide range of organisations to guide the way they identify, organise, store and use their data – and link it to that of others to create new products and services, or just a richer context for interpreting their own history.

Mailing list

Tracey Milligan

Tracey Milligan

Tracey is a native of California who has been a TMG user since 1997, and he had become his family’s ‘de facto’ family history researcher before that.  He studied computer science and Geographic Information Systems, following which he worked for Alcatel for 16 years, initially as technical support engineer then later as service & support administrator.

History Research Environment Limited

History Research Environment Limited is a company limited by guarantee registered in England and Wales. Its purpose is to provide a central vehicle for any legal matters. It holds project funds and acts as the signatory for any project contracts.

Board of directors

Robin Lamacraft portraitChair: Robin Lamacraft

(Adelaide, Australia)

Retired CSIRO consultant statistician and software engineer.




Secretary: Don FergusonDON_FERGUSON

(Melbourne, Australia)

IT consultant.



Michael Maggs headshot Mar 2017Intellectual Property: Michael Maggs

(London, UK)

Retired IP lawyer, Wikimedian.



John LucasBoard member: John Lucas

(Seaford, Delaware, USA)

Retired, with corporate experience in services, software engineering, IT, finance and legal, most recently at HP.




The board wishes to include others who have expertise in other history-related or cultural heritage disciplines. If you are interested, please contact us.