Author Topic: List of protestant mother and children homes in Antrim  (Read 1316 times)

Rathfarnham

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List of protestant mother and children homes in Antrim
« on: March 05, 2019, 12:15:37 AM »
I am trying to find a list of mother and children homes in and around Belfast, Antrim, Down in the 1940s.   These would need to be homes that dealt with Protestants in the area.   So far I have not received a list from the formal governments both north and south of the border.

I was born in Belfast (1948) and was housed somewhere between 1948-1950, when I suddenly appeared in Dublin.  My mother gave me up in 1948 to whom or to where I do not know.  She returned to her husband shortly after I was born. I do know that the three families involved in my mother's heritage did not house me, so I was not farmed out or hidden by a relative.  I have interviewed them or their descendants.

So my best shot is to find a list of Protestant homes in and around Belfast,  and then try to research/access those records.

The good news, regardless of lack of cooperation in researching the early years I did find out who my parents were (deceased) and have had reunions with 12 of by 15 siblings - it is a long story,

Any help would be appreciated!!!!!

HarryHippo

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Re: List of protestant mother and children homes in Antrim
« Reply #1 on: March 05, 2019, 12:50:51 AM »
Hopedean and Thorndale in an around Belfast and another on the Ravenhill Road. im sorry,  cant remember the name of.  are the only names that spring to mind .. I wish you good luck with your search.
Lux Et Veritas.

rpelan

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Re: List of protestant mother and children homes in Antrim
« Reply #2 on: March 05, 2019, 12:58:53 AM »
Hello,

My late aunt used to help people in your circumstances if they had been born in Malone Place Hospital (a possible candidate for you), although they were normally tracing their biological parents which you have already done.  There is a document that my aunt wrote and which I have updated, listed in the following thread for background information about Malone Place:

   http://www.belfastforum.co.uk/index.php/topic,57237.30.html

I would say that 1948 might be late as regards a traditional "mother and child" home as this is when the NHS was created. Standalone institutions were commonly closed by then or taken under state control - although a few Magdalen Asylums run by nuns persisted in the island of Ireland until the '70s or a little later (including one on the Ormeau Road?).  I don't think a definitive list of such institutions exists - they were privately run, not always long-lasting and there was no requirement for them to register with the state. That's not to say that some people haven't tried compiling such lists but the recent (and ongoing?) official inquiries may have created something.

Good luck with your quest.

jillyfred

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Re: List of protestant mother and children homes in Antrim
« Reply #3 on: March 05, 2019, 10:34:39 AM »

There was a Children`s Home in Lisburn run by the Church of Ireland.
Also,the Salvation Army ran Thorndale House for Mother`s and Babies during
the time period you have given.
Have you tried Belfast`s Dr.Barnardo`s?I think it was around the Antrim Road
Area.
You say you have contacted Government Agencies-have you contacted the
Protestant Churches to ask about their homes?
As has been said-many were `privately run`-perhaps a longshot which you may have
already tried-Proni,the Linenhall Library -they may have records.
Have you not been able to obtain your original Birth Certificate from the one you
hold?
Probably all I have said is not much help but I emphasise with you in needing
to know about those first two years of your life.
May you eventually be successful.

jilly


rpelan

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Re: List of protestant mother and children homes in Antrim
« Reply #4 on: March 05, 2019, 10:52:35 AM »


There is a thread where someone has compiled a pretty good list:

  http://www.belfastforum.co.uk/index.php?topic=53871.0

Here is an attempt at a list by an historian but it is clearly incomplete:

  http://www.childrenshomes.org.uk/list/MB15.shtml

I had forgotten about Thorndale persisting.


Rathfarnham

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Re: List of protestant mother and children homes in Antrim
« Reply #5 on: March 05, 2019, 02:47:22 PM »
Thank you for the quick response.   I have been the routes of  Barnardos, Salvation Army, Irish Church Missions, Belfast Trust, Adoption Authority of Ireland, PRONI, GRONI, Thorndale House, places north and south, and many points in between.   I do have my original birth certificate with my birth name, and father/mother's names listed.   However, I learned that the father mentioned was not mine.   My mother had an affair outside of her marriage with a younger man and I popped up or out! 

My mother was kicked out of the house because she was pregnant (by another man, not her husband) and ended up in the work house in Belfast near the Royal Jubilee Maternity Hospital when she had me, July 1948 (just before the NHS took over).   She was discharged with me from the work house and went to live on Roden Street for a short while, until she was reconciled with her husband and went back home.  I was given up for adoption as part of the reconciliation.   I was not boarded out with relatives, already checked that avenue. Since my mother was Protestant and a member of the Church of Ireland when I was born, I checked parish records in the area in and around Belfast with the gracious help of several C of I clergy.

The Belfast Trust and AAI have limited resources.   They have been great in helping me cobble together my past, however they have not been able to find out what happened to me after my birth in July 1948 until I showed up in a children's home in Dublin.  That home has thoroughly searched their records and the is no mention as to how I arrived at the home. I met personally with researchers from these agencies in Dublin and Belfast.

THANKS EVERYONE FOR YOU HELP AND ALSO FOR THE LIST OF PLACES!


James James

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Re: List of protestant mother and children homes in Antrim
« Reply #6 on: March 05, 2019, 04:43:15 PM »
It sounds strange that you went from Belfast to Dublin but without any records in Dublin.

If you had been formally and legally adopted in Belfast, you would have been with an adoptive family and you would have an adoption file in Northern Ireland which you have a legal right to see.

It sounds to me as if the move to Dublin was probably done on an informal basis.

I wonder if perhaps there might have been something like this going on. ?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baby_farming

Why Dublin though. ? If you weren't legally adopted in Belfast, and your mother was a Protestant, I wonder if perhaps, in the interests of discretion and privacy within her own community, she might perhaps have appealed for help to a Catholic priest in Belfast, and he used his contacts to arrange the transfer to Dublin.

Rathfarnham

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Email for adoption support team
« Reply #7 on: March 08, 2019, 04:36:53 PM »
The Northern  Ireland Social Care Trust seems to be a clandestine operation - it is hard to find an email address.   I am near Chicago, USA and prefer not to wish for a two week turnaround of a letter.   I have been searching for nearly 10 years!    I may die before the answer arrives!

I am looking for the email address of the:

Northern Health Ireland Social Care Trust
Adoption Support Team
Unit 3
Springfarm Industrial Estate
Ballymena Road
Antrim
Co. Antrim  BT 414 4NT

Any help would be appreciated.     Thanks to all that have replied to my prior requests.


vinnym

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Re: List of protestant mother and children homes in Antrim
« Reply #8 on: March 08, 2019, 09:27:14 PM »
Best wishes with your search Rathfarnham, it must be difficult when you come up against a brick wall. I hope and pray that you succeed in your search,

Seasons

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Re: List of protestant mother and children homes in Antrim
« Reply #9 on: March 11, 2019, 06:59:32 PM »
Hi Rathfarnham

I've been down the same route to try and help my father after he was born in a Protestant Mother and Baby Home on the Castlereagh Road Belfast (East Belfast)

I've had to go down the DNA Route as I've exhausted the Paperwork Trail at this time.

I contacted the Post Adoption Team - here are their details! they were very thought and most helpful to me.

Post Adoption Team
Foster Green Hospital
110 Saintfield Road
Belfast
BT8 6HD

Duty Officer Contact. Karen Leddy. Phone. 02895040350.

I don't have a email address for her but if you want I'll phone tomorrow for you to get it! Let me know?

I HOPE it opens a door for you

Regards
Seasons.

James James

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Re: List of protestant mother and children homes in Antrim
« Reply #10 on: March 11, 2019, 07:14:36 PM »
ADOPTION or POST ADOPTION,... always suggests that there was a formal legal adoption,... and if there really was such an adoption of that kind, that would always leave official records, which an adoptee has a legal right to view,... but without any formal proof of such a legal adoption,... the fact of the existence of a formal legal adoption can only be an assumption.

Elwyn

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Re: List of protestant mother and children homes in Antrim
« Reply #11 on: March 12, 2019, 09:03:17 AM »
You know that you were in a home in Dublin in 1950, but perhaps you were in that general area for the 2 years before that too?
 
Northern Ireland has had adoption law since around 1927, but the Republic of Ireland only introduced it in 1952. So I can see a sort of loophole situation whereby if your mother took you to Dublin around 1948 you won’t have been covered by any adoption law there and so the arrangements for your care would have been on an informal basis, meaning that there may not be any records.
 
Elwyn

Seawide2014

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Re: List of protestant mother and children homes in Antrim
« Reply #12 on: August 24, 2019, 10:07:36 PM »
I am currently trying to find my grandmothers biological parents. i have her birth certificate. Her name was Emily Coulter at birth. Born in Eniskillen workhouse, "boarded out" by belfast workhouse days after birth. Mothers name Elizabeth Coulter. Said to be 23 at birth. My grandmother then went on to be fostered by Vicky Dougan in Mayo Street,Shankill. Where Vicky Changed her name to Emily Dougan. Then my grandmother ended up in 213 Antrim Road (a private run childrens home) in which she was then adopted and her name was changed completely.  :D
My nanny has been trying for years to find out who she is or where she came from. She passed away a few wee[size=78%]ks ago and although its very raw iv am adamant to find out what shes been searching for all these years. [/size]
I have contacted Prioni and belfast social workers although im no further on than i am at the minute. If anyone could advise me on what to do next?
Thanks  :-* [size=78%] [/size]

Seasons

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Re: List of protestant mother and children homes in Antrim
« Reply #13 on: August 27, 2019, 07:18:54 PM »
Hi Seawide2014

I am going to send you a DM on this site.. I have just completed the same search for my Father.

I will share with you the contacts that became a enormous help to get me to this point.

Seasons

herbie

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Re: List of protestant mother and children homes in Antrim
« Reply #14 on: August 27, 2019, 10:01:05 PM »
Seasons .. is this information too personal to share with everyone?
Thanks
Herbie