Morfa Home For Boys, Newquay, Cornwall

The Morfa Home For Boys (also referred to as the Truro Diocesan Home for Boys) was opened by the Waifs and Strays Society in 1909 at 22 Station (now Cliff) Road, Newquay. It replaced the Society's home a Helston which had become too small for its purpose.

Morfa Home For Boys, Newquay, c.1910. © Peter Higginbotham

Morfa Home For Boys, Newquay, c.1911. © Peter Higginbotham

Morfa Home For Boys, Newquay, c.1927. © Peter Higginbotham

The home greatly relied on the generosity of local people to help keep its running costs down. It held an annual 'Pound Day' when gifts of a pound in cash or a pound weight of goods were invited. The local barbers in Newquay took turns to visit the home and give all the boys a free haircut.

Morfa Home For Boys, Newquay, c.1928. © Peter Higginbotham

The boys attended a local school and were inspected each day before setting off.

Pre-school inspection of boys at Morfa Home, Newquay, c.1925. © Peter Higginbotham

As well as their formal education, the home also provided instruction in practical craft skills. All the boys' boots were repaired in-house.

Boot-repairing at Morfa Home For Boys, Newquay, c.1927. © Peter Higginbotham

Living just a few yards from the beach, the boys were able to enjoy plenty of time swimming in the sea.

Morfa boys swimming at Newquay, c.1924. © Peter Higginbotham

The home was renamed St Michael's Home in around 1928. In 1930, owing to the expiry property's lease, the home moved to new premises at Falmouth.

St Michael's Home boys and staff shortly before moving to Falmouth, 1930. © Peter Higginbotham

The Newquay property still exists, now used as retail premises.

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.