for family


It is a desperately sad fact that some people who went into children's homes experienced separation from their immediate family - separation from mothers, fathers, sisters and brothers who stayed in the family home, and even separation from siblings who also went into care. For some this separation was temporary, for others, it was permanent and they were never to see their families again.

I am delighted that this site has been helpful for some people in finding their lost family members. It is my hope that this page may help more people in the future reunite with those they have lost.



Are you looking for someone? 


While the search for a lost family member is very difficult, particularly when children's names were changed through adoption or details such as the names of children's homes have been forgotten, this site has proved that sometimes even hopeless cases can bring some joy.

If you are looking for someone, please send us a message to put on the website - wth details such as a family surname and a locaton so that someone might recognise themselves.

Please be careful that you don't give so many details that the person is immediately recognisable as they may not want their story to be made public.


Please add your appeal to our page



Ian's story


I first set up this website in 2011. That same year Ian got in touch with me to ask if I would include his memories of being in cottage homes in Central England. He had gone into the cottage homes when he was just two years old. He thought he might have had brothers and sisters but he wasn't sure - he had had no contact with any family in the sixty years since going into the Homes. He wrote his memories down and I added them to the website.


Nine years later, I received an email from Ian's nephew, desperately trying to make contact with his newfound uncle.


Read more…



Thank you to everyone who has bought books from this site, clicked on our adverts, or splashed out on photographs.
The funds raised have helped make family reunions like Ian's possible. Thank you!

Do you know this building?


I recently received this message:


"This photo of a sister, who disappeared from my family without trace, standing in a group outside a large school/home with an adult carer alongside in about 1946/7, and is the only evidence of her existence. May I send it with the vague hope that the Home may be identified? Thank you."

If you can help to identify the home, please leave a message here.



I am sharing just a few stories here on this page as I believe sharing information helps to learn about the impact of separating families and
the efforts needed to have any hope at all of reuniting people.

The stories are real but some of the identifying details have been changed as not all people want their stories
to be made public.


If you would also like to share your story here to help others, please email me at

Harry's Story


The first step in looking for lost family members when children have been taken into care is to request your own care records. There are times when these may offer some clues.


A few years ago, I was contacted by Harry who knew nothing about his family and believed he was the only one left.

It is amazing what he discovered within the leather-bound covers of an old worn-out, handwritten book.

Read more


Childhood photographs


Not having any photographs of our childhood can leave us asking questions about what we looked like as children, were we happy and smiling? Who was with us? What did they look like? Photographs help us to populate our memories and give them a bit of solidity. In recent weeks, through this website, I have been able to give people photographs of themselves as children.



Luckily enough, I found the publicity shot of Dennis (above) in a 1955 brochure about the Railway Orphanage. He now has the brochure to show his family. 

Dennis's Story


Dennis went into the Southern Railway Servants' Orphanage in Woking in 1953 when he was three years old.

He wrote and asked if I had any photographs of him or his brothers or sister amongst those I have been donated. Sadly, none of the photographs bore his family name.


However, he did remember having his photograph taken professionally for the Southern Railway to use for publicity and fundraising. 


Looking for photographs of yourself? 
Try this page.



Please come back. I'm still working on this page. More memories will be added soon. Thank you.