Children's Home Records
Many children's homes were run by national and local charities, of which Barnardo's is probably the best known. Records of their children's homes will form part of each organisation's archives. Access to such records may incur a charge and also be restricted to former inmates or, in the case of individuals now deceased, their immediate descendants (subject to proof of death being provided). A counselling service may also be offered for those accessing their own records.Barnardo's
- Barnardo's 'Making Connections' and Family History Services — for enquiries relating the records of children formerly in the care of Barnardo's and those of other organisations absorbed by them.
- Action For Children (formerly the National Children's Home). Can provide access to their own records for individuals who were adopted through the charity or who resided in one of its homes. Help also for those searching for family history information.
- Index of the Society's first 30,000 children's case files ordered by surname.
- Index of the Society's first 30,000 children's case files ordered by date of birth.
- The Children's Society Records and Archive Centre is at Block A Floor 2, Tower Bridge Business Complex, 100 Clement's Road, London, England SE16 4DG (email: firstname.lastname@example.org). Files for children admitted to its homes after September 1926 were microfilmed in the 1980s and the originals destroyed. Some post-1926 files had already been damaged or destroyed during a flood. The Society's Post-Adoption and Care Service provides access to records, information, advice, birth record counselling, tracing and intermediary service for people who were in care or adopted through the Society.
- The Society has produced detailed catalogues of its records relating to disabled children, and of records relating to the Children's Union (a fundraising body mostly supported from the contributions of children).
A similar situation applies to institutions which were run by other bodies which still survive and which maintain their own archives. For institutions which, after their closure, evolved into charitable trusts, the Charity Commission website may produce contact details. For homes that were run by long defunct organisations, the best place to begin looking for any surviving records is the county or metropolitan record office covering the area.
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