On their own - Britain's child migrants

Reflection, remembering and reunion

statue of a young boy and girl with suitcases on the dockside

"For all the noble endeavour of institutions, one vital ingredient is always missing. There is, and never will be, a substitute for love." John Lane

"We didn’t have any knowledge of the outside world." Gwen Cole

 

Child migrant memorial, Fremantle 2006. Reproduced courtesy Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts.

The last official child migrant party travelled to Australia by air in 1967.

With changes to child welfare practice in the UK and improvements in living standards, fewer children were available for migration. The schemes to Australia ended and the institutions began to close from the 1970s.

For former child migrants the legacy of their experience remains. Many have struggled, not only due to the hardships and abuse they endured, but also because they were torn from their homeland and lost their identities. Others were lucky enough to find fulfillment in their lives.

Regardless of their experiences many former child migrants and their descendants value their history and work hard to preserve it.


Catholic Agricultural College Bindoon 2010. ANMM collection.

 

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