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Thread: South Liverpool Kids Homes

  1. #16
    paddy Paddy's Avatar
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    Here?s a story about Menlove Avenue. While I was there they had a woodwork shop for teaching kids basic skills like making a coffee table just like woodwork in school. Anyway the woodwork teacher had a white moustache and I thought he looked like Mr. Pastry the comedian. Any road weighing him up which is what I did all the time with adults, I thought that he seemed quiet and because he was a tradesman he would most likely be okay and better than the other brutes. How wrong I was. Some older lads who were on remand to go before a court stole a chisel and took out the bars of the dormitory window and fled into the night. They were eventually caught and brought back, now Mr. Pastry came into his force and waded in against those boys. They actually bragged about how they gave them a good hiding and how Mr. Pastry took his revenge for stealing his Chisel as a twelve year old boy I saw them as animals not men. I had trouble after that trusting grown ups as I always had an image of craftsmen being caring like watchmakers and trustful considerate people. Did his chisel mean that much to him?

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    Oh as I was young and easy in the mercy of his means,
    Time held me green and dying
    Though I sang in my chains like the sea.

    Dylan Thomas

  2. #17
    Senior Member wsteve55's Avatar
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    Hi Paddy,
    you said you were at Nazareth house, so I wondered around what period, and which school you went to? I went to St. Peter & Paul's, and St. Bedes, which was at the back, and knew a couple of kids from there!

  3. #18
    Partsky
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    Paddy, I have the greatest sympathy for your situation. I am quite sure that you have got on with your life but some things leave scars, as you know so well. This often goes down the line to the present day. My Mother was placed in the care of Nuns in I believe Leyfield House, which is now demolished, but stood near or on the site of Cardinal Heenan School in West Derby (I have tried hard to find info on this place but have only once found a fleeting reference to it, on another site). Her Mother had died, and in those days (the 30s) Motherless children were often placed in "care". The experience stayed with her all her adult life, until the day she died. Its not too dramatic to say her experience effected all of us as. I still cant drive past the site without getting upset at her experiences and feel badly that I cannot right the wrongs. Its not always about money and indeed it is justice to bring those responsible for mistreating children to justice. Sadly, the word justice has been debased by some people but the majority of people who did have bad preventable experiences deserve to have their voice heard. How else can we improve the care system for future generations if you are not held accountable for your actions. Happily, I have during my adult life worked with many social workers and home managers who have tried really hard to make decent lives for their charges so, obviously, many people have tried to bring about changes for the better.

    Thank God there is a bit more support for children and their parents now Paddy, although the system is still far from perfect. Best of luck to you.

  4. #19
    paddy Paddy's Avatar
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    Thanks for that supportive post partsky. I think that one of the big stumbling blocks when dealing with the Catholic church is their strength in the Liverpool community, or if you like their power. I made a statement in the past where I said that I thought that the religious upbringing they gave me as a child was unnatural and severe. When I was a boy in Crosby we got up at half past six in the morning and got ready for church. That was seven days a week. If you wet the bed as some did including myself from time to time then you had a cold bath?s as punishment for doing so, the fear of having a cold bath induced you to do it more, that I am sure of. Once ready we all went to mass and sometimes there would be coffins in the church. If it was clergy the tops were left off. The mass was Latin and lasted about half an hour except on Sundays when it was later and lasted about an hour. After mass we had breakfast and went to School on weekdays. Returning from school we had a light tea and then went to Rosary that was everyday. After Rosary that lasted about an hour we had tea. Then it was evening prayers after an hour?s television, the nuns had a blanket that they kept by the television to prevent the girls from seeing any kissing. The last prayers of the day were said while we knelt on the floor and we had to say over and over again while we thumped our chests ?Through my fault through my fault, through my own grievous fault? we continually repeated that chant. Then it was bed time and you said your night prayers. When you got into bed you crossed your arms in the form of Saint Theresa in case you died in the night. Saturday was different and you had a slightly longer Mass. Then after breakfast we went to the Odeon, our nickname was the Nazi?s because we came from Nazareth house and when you got to the pictures you went up to the balcony and said Nazi house and it was free. We walked there and back in two?s most weeks and strict watch was kept on our movements. In the afternoon we got pocket money I got sixpence and we walked in two?s to South road. When we got back we had Rosary and then supper followed by night prayers. Sunday was the strictest day. The Mass was later but lasted a lot longer over an hour. Then after breakfast and your chores it was Religious instruction which was usually quite graphic all about the devil and going to Hell. Then it was dinner time and then after a period of recreation it was Benediction a service that lasted about three quarters of an hour. Then tea then more night prayers then bed with your arms folded in the form of Saint Theresa. I would like to suggest that it wasn?t a good way to treat kids.
    Oh as I was young and easy in the mercy of his means,
    Time held me green and dying
    Though I sang in my chains like the sea.

    Dylan Thomas

  5. #20
    paddy Paddy's Avatar
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    Default Crosby.

    Wsteve55 yes I went to St Peter and Pauls from about 59-63 I had a teacher called Miss Nicholas and we sometimes used the Hall at the back of Saint Peter and Pauls church.
    Oh as I was young and easy in the mercy of his means,
    Time held me green and dying
    Though I sang in my chains like the sea.

    Dylan Thomas

  6. #21
    Senior Member wsteve55's Avatar
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    Well Paddy,
    looks like I missed you,as I was there(in a foster home) '66 to'68, so our paths didn't cross, that time,at least!

  7. #22
    Member georgieboy's Avatar
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    Angry nazareth house

    HI Paddy I read your ( a day in the life ) I could almost have written it word for word myself, we had all the religious instruction, benediction, oh and you forgot( the stations of the cross ) we had to sleep with our arms crossed also, we had to walk to Warrington from Widnes to the pictures on Saturdays in a line holding the back of the kids coat in front of you, that was more than 50 years ago , and I am still troubled by the whole experiance, I can still remember the smell of the wax that we polished the floors with, anyway Paddy we probobly had very similar experiances Take Care, bye for now Gb

  8. #23
    paddy Paddy's Avatar
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    I think it is always dangerous ground when you talk about the Catholic institutions they are very aware of their position as being the moral guardians of the city. When I got my files off Liverpool social Services I read with interest the reports made on my infancy. The system was to make quarterly reports after visits to the convent. Myself and my brothers and sisters are always described as attractive and intelligent children. On each report sheet there is a column to describe the health of the child so if you had the measles or chicken pox it would be recorded. If I put my hand up to the back of my head there?s a small scar. I received three stitches to a head wound whilst in the nursery. I remember thinking that stitches were stars and that the stretcher they put me on to stitch me up was an Ironing board. I also remember that the injury was caused by a very forceful push against a sink. The incident and record of the injury has been omitted from the records. There is also other incidents that have not been recorded or taken out. So you can only suspect that they actively cover up on such things.
    Last edited by Paddy; 01-07-2009 at 12:40 PM.
    Oh as I was young and easy in the mercy of his means,
    Time held me green and dying
    Though I sang in my chains like the sea.

    Dylan Thomas

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    Newbie teresamariaf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kevin View Post
    Paddy,
    The topic has come up several times before, under various guises but often connected to discussions about St Gabriel's.
    I grew up not too far from New Heys and had several friends from school living there. I was a frequent visitor in early to mid 60s and found it to be a quite happy place with contented kids - though I dare say there were exceptions.
    Kevin
    My brother was in St.gabriels (Knolle park), in the 50s My mothers was in hospital with TB and my younger brothers taken into care, my younger brother, was placed on a bunk bed, when he was two, he fell out of the bed, and the nuns placed him back in bed, my mum was allowed out on a rare visit the next day to the kids in knolle park, she noticed that my brother could not sit up and kept fallen to the side and backwards and insisted her saw a doctor, he was taken to alder hey and he had broken his back, he was hospitalised for two years strapped to a bed in alder hey, he then had to where calapers on his legs untill his teens, he never got a sorry or anything from anyone, he still suffers with his back today

  10. #25
    paddy Paddy's Avatar
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    They did cover up on injuries I have a scar on the back of my head. I got three stitches in a head wound in the nursery at Nazareth house I have the records from my nusery days and it is not reported. The cause of the head wound was an assault.
    Oh as I was young and easy in the mercy of his means,
    Time held me green and dying
    Though I sang in my chains like the sea.

    Dylan Thomas

  11. #26
    Senior Member lindylou's Avatar
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    These things I read about childrens homes - it's heartbreaking some of things that has gone on.

  12. #27
    Keeping It Real !!!!!!!!! ItsaZappathing's Avatar
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    Thankfully I was never unfortunate enough to end up in such places but...Wow,reading these posts makes me realise how bad these places where.
    Paddy,you are one fighter that's for sure.

  13. #28
    Senior Member wsteve55's Avatar
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    I've got to say though,that it wasn't all bad,I met some really nice people,on my journey through socialservice land!

  14. #29
    Keeping It Real !!!!!!!!! ItsaZappathing's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wsteve55 View Post
    I've got to say though,that it wasn't all bad,I met some really nice people,on my journey through socialservice land!
    Maybe not Steve but much respect to those,such as yourself who managed to lead a "normal" life after being pushed around and put in such places. I bet many tears were shed on many occassions.

  15. #30
    Senior Member wsteve55's Avatar
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    Ha, the ironic thing was,my "normal" life ended, when I went back home!(I use the term "home" very loosely)

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