Unfortunately, photographs of children were rare in children's homes. Becuse cameras were expensive and photography considered a luxury, institutions did not often take photographs and, even when they did, like many official records of time spent in care, few have survived.


Sometimes staff members had cameras, or publicity shots were taken of children for fundraising purposes. Some of these have been given to this website (and we are always happy to take more) and we are enormously grateful for the opportunity to try to get these to their rightful owners - the children pictured. Finding a photograph of yourself as a child when you have never seen one before can be a great experience.







Because we want to preserve people's right to privacy, we cannot reproduce photographs of children
and we cannot make too many identifying features public, such as full names or dates of birth.






The photos we have currently are listed below.
If you think you may be in one of them,
please let us know.
We will ask you some identifying details (name
and date of birth) to see if it matches up and then
send you a copy.


This is a free service. You will not be asked to pay to see photos of yourself as a child. 



Mystery children's home, Bromley


Erdington Cottage Homes


Southern Railway Orphanage


A mystery institution

 c. 1946/1947

Possible residential nursery
in Bromley


I would love to be able to identify this place so we are better able to get the photos to the people pictured.


If you think you know what or where it was, or you are any of the children pictured, please get in touch.


We have been given a photograph album which has a number of photographs of children who were admitted when they were babies or vey young children. As the children are very young it could be a residential nursery, convalescent home, or a small hospital perhaps, or another type of facility.


The album belonged to one of the members of staff


The building,as can be seen in the photo of one of the album pages below, is a low level building with a corrugated iron roof. This may have been an outhouse or part of the main structure. 

The staff, all those pictured are female, are wearing nurse-style uniforms. 


Staff names include: 
Doreen Cook
Daphne Baylis
Mrs Webb
Sister Scaggs


One of the staff members is pictured below to show the uniforms being worn.



I have now discovered that the home was most likely in Bromley, Kent or linked to Bromley.


There are two possible residential nurseries used for Bromley:

The Gorse Residential Nursery, Manor Park, Chislehurst
Avonstowe Residential Nursery, Crofton Avenue, Orpington

Immediately following the Second World War, the Gorse was used by Bromley Council as a home for children whose mothers were in hospital. 

Also in Bromley was:
The Rochester Diocesan Home
The Post Office Orphan Home

West Kent Isolation Hospital, Lennard Road, Bromley Common
(a fever hospital with 118 beds in 1944)



Can you help identify which home the photo album is from?



The children in the photo album


The following is a list of the children's surnames with the year of their birth. (For some, the photograph is sadly missing but the individual may be included in the group photo so they are still included in the list).



Armes: born 1945, admitted 1945 (photo missing)
Baker born 1944 admitted 1946

Baldwin: born 1943, admitted 1943

Burke: born 1942, admitted 1943

Childs: born 1945, admitted 1946
Emmerson: born 1942, admitted 1946
Farrelly: born 1946, admitted 1946
Finch born 1943, admitted 1946
Franke: born 1944, admitted 1946
Greenhead: born 1942, admitted 1945
Hawthorne: born 1942 admitted 1946
Hogan: born 1942, admitted 1945 (photo missing)

James: born 1941, admitted 1944

Jenkins; born 1945, admitted 1946

Jenkins; born 1942, admitted 1942

Lee: born 1943, admitted 1943

Lloyd: born 1945, admitted 1946 (photo missing)

Marsh born 1944 admitted 1944
McCusker: born 1942, admitted 1942 (photo missing)

McInerney: admitted 1944 and 1946

Mersh born 1941 admitted 1944
Pervanoglu born 1943, admitted 1944
Smith born  June 1944, admitted 1946
Southern born 1942, admitted 1945 (photo missing)

Sylvester: born 1944, admitted 1945
Thompson born 1942 admitted 1943

Webb: born 1943, admitted 1944



Bourke: admitted 1945
Bourke: admitted 1945

Dodds: born 1945, admitted 1946

Frasier born 1942 admitted 1944
Harris: born 1941, admitted 1945
Hughes born 1944 admitted 1945
Leeming:born 1942, admitted 1944
Leppenwell: born 1944, admitted 1945

McInerney: admitted 1946
Morton: born 1945, admitted 1945
Newman: born 1944, admitted 1945

Ruddick: born 1945, admitted 1946
Spink: born 1942, admitted 1946

Wood: born 1944, admitted 1945 (photo missing)

Young born 1942, admitted 1945



And now also available for Kindle!

Erdington Cottage Homes
Home 13 - Derrydown


I have a series of snaps of some of the children and staff members from various holidays and trips in the mid 1950s. And some I believe were taken at the homes themselves.


If you would like to see if you are included in any of them, please get in touch:


The back of one of the Derrydown photos. Girls are pictured as well as boys although Derrydown was a boys' home. Were you on a Torquay holiday from girls' home at Erdington Cottage Homes in the mid-1950s? Do you remember a trip on the Regency Belle?


Woking Railway Orphanage
We have been given a quantity of photographs and booklets relating to the Southern Railway Orphanage at Woking. Just a few items are shown here:

Most of the photographs are pictures of very young children playing or portrait shots of the children. We believe that the children may have been in the nursery and that all the photographs date from 1955 to 1959. Some are professional photographs, others are snaps. Most have names on them. I would love to be able to reunite these photographs with the people pictured in them.
If you were at this orphanage in the mid to late 1950s, please contact me and we'll see if you are featured.
The surnames that are mentioned on the photos are:
Rothery or Rotherly
Maina or Mainea
Chiss or Chriss
Some of the children are identified only by their first names so it is always worth asking to see if you feature if you were in the nursery part of the orphanage in the 1950s.