The Society was formed in the winter of 1978/9 within the London Borough of Waltham Forest, at the same time as the other London Societies i.e.: East of London FHS, North Middlesex FHS, Westminster and Central Middlesex FHS (now London, Westminster & North Middlesex) and West Middlesex FHS.

The Society's area is recognised as being bounded by the East of London FHS on the south and east (approximately from the River Lee along the A11/A104 to the M25), London, Westminster & North Middlesex FHS on the west and south west (the River Lee being a natural boundary) and the Essex SFH in the north (the M25 being the dividing line).

The Society issues it's journal, Roots in the Forest, twice a year.

The Society aims to create, transcribe and index records to aid people in their research. A number of projects with this aim are in progress.

Committee members are:
ChairTim Valder-Hogg
Secretary Mark Carroll
Treasurer Stan Britten
Kathy Unwin
Gill Nichols
Pat Keegan