Fron Home for Boys, Bodorgan, Anglesey, Wales

The Fron Home for Little Boys was located at Bethel, in the parish of Trefdraeth, Anglesey, although its postal address — based on the local railway station — was usually given as Bodorgan R.S.O. (Railway Sorting Office). The Home is said to have been founded by local people in around 1903. In 1905, however, it was taken over by the Waifs and Strays Society. The home could could accommodate up to eight boys aged from 4 to 10.

Fron Home for Boys, Bodorgan, c.1905. © Peter Higginbotham

In 1911, the matron was Margaret A. Davies, with Mary Owen as a servant, and eight boys in residence:

  • Medredith Pugh, aged 10, born Dolgelly
  • Stanley Hope, aged 9, born Manchester
  • Granville Ratclife, aged 8, born Preston
  • Thomas Mitchell, aged 8, born Bangor
  • William Swindley, aged 7, born Bucklow
  • Bernard Berry, aged 6, born Birmingham
  • Arthur Clark, aged 5, born Birkenhead
  • Harold Roberts, aged 3, born Connah's Quay

Fron Home for Boys, Bodorgan, c.1911. © Peter Higginbotham

Fron Home for Boys, Bodorgan, c.1913. © Peter Higginbotham

The home closed in 1918 and the residents transferred to the Society's recently opened St Garmon's Home at Betws Garmon.

The Bethel property still exists, located on the B4422 about a quarter of a mile north of Bethel.

Records

Note: many repositories impose a closure period of up to 100 years for records identifying individuals.

Bibliography

  • Bowder, Bill Children First: a photo-history of England's children in need (1980, Mowbray)
  • Church of England Waifs and Strays' Society [Rudolfe, Edward de Montjoie] The First Forty Years: a chronicle of the Church of England Waifs and Strays' Society 1881-1920 (1922, Church of England Waifs and Strays' Society / S.P.C.K.)
  • Rudolf, Mildred de Montjoie Everybody's Children: the story of the Church of England Children's Society 1921-1948 (1950, OUP)
  • Stroud, John Thirteen Penny Stamps: the story of the Church of England Children's Society (Waifs and Strays) from 1881 to the 1970s (1971, Hodder and Stoughton)
  • Morris, Lester The Violets Are Mine: Tales of an Unwanted Orphan (2011, Xlibris Corporation) — memoir of a boy growing up in several of the Society's homes (Princes Risborough, Ashdon, Hunstanton, Leicester) in the 1940s and 50s.