Author Topic: N0RTHAMPTON - Home for illegitimate babies  (Read 25490 times)

Offline JaneDuston

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Re: N0RTHAMPTON - Home for illegitimate babies
« Reply #45 on: Sunday 12 November 17 10:28 GMT (UK) »
I spent a short time in Elmleigh as an unmarried teenage mother.  Although I find it hard to remember the actual dates, I do recall my daughter's early fetal movements and she was born summer 1980, so sometime between 1979~1980.
At that time there was an older posh-speaking lady playing housekeeper.  She brought her adult dependent son in with her and I think he gardened.  She came across as helpful, though at times bless 'er I recall her micro~managing the simplist of cooking tasks to be efficient.  There was an older married mum~to~be there who was always drinking tea.  She said she was there to give her unexpected last child up for adoption.  Also a new teenage mother arrived with her new born (she had been taken totally by suprise by her child's existence and birth).  She seemed to be going back to her parents home shortly afterwards with her son.  I stayed in a huge downstairs room at the back of the house.  The walls were painted orange (I think it might have been a converted garage).  I was to use the smallish spiral type, a servants back staircase up to the bathrooms.  The bathrooms only gave out a small amount of hot water.  The home just seemed so stripped back to the past and quite austere.  Of an evening the TV played host to "Tales of the unexpected" and I would go to bed early, wake early and listen to the birds singing.  I was happy to be reunited with my mother before my daughter was born, and although we were looking forward to bringing baby up, she died at a few days old.  The past has gone, the future isn't here yet, today is always the moment to live in, peacefully and fully.

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Offline MelodieAnita

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Re: N0RTHAMPTON - Home for illegitimate babies
« Reply #46 on: Yesterday at 16:11 »
Wow!  I can't believe I've found this about Elmleigh!  My mother worked at this mother and baby home when I was about 9 years old in 1977.  She was a kind of "in house" mother and we lived in a couple of rooms in the home and my mother was the one that the pregnant girls would come and wake up if they went into labour during the night when no other staff were around.  I can remember the cook at the home was called Mrs Thorpe or Thorn and her daughter, who was a similar age to me, was called Emily.  I can't remember any of the names of the very young mothers but I can remember being very intrigued by all these young mums and I used to lay awake at night listening to some of them crying through the night because their babies had been taken away from them or hearing parents rowing with the teenagers about the disgrace and shame they had brought on the family by getting pregnant out of wedlock etc.  I don't know how long we lived there for but I have never forgotten the time.  There was a children's home next door and I went to school locally somewhere with Emily and some of the children from next door.  Memories.

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