The Girl Nobody Wants – by Lily O’Brien

Sunday, 19 August, 2012. Listen to internet radio with Fire Talk Production on Blog Talk Radio. WARNING: VERY GRAPHIC DISCUSSION ON CHILD ABUSE!

Panel: David Little Eagle and Nell Cole,

The Girl Nobody Wants – A shocking true story of child abuse in Ireland – by Lily O’Brien (author)

Please join us — as we hear from the author’s own words — what she lived as a child. The show is dedicated to her brother Simon. Also, to all those children who lost their lives, or took their lives because of the pain of living with what happened to them.

This is the shocking true story of an innocent girl abused by the very people who said they would take good care of her. Lily’s family began the path to her destruction – they used and abused her – but they never ever wanted or loved her. The little girl was sexually, physically and emotionally abused by many people around her who were able to hide behind the security of Ireland’s Catholic Church-run institutions. She also suffered at the hands of other people around them whom they called their friends. You only get one chance to live your life as a child, but Lily was never given that chance – her childhood was taken from her before it ever begun. You may contact her at:

Q: How Do You Feel Now?

A: I feel sorry for myself, I feel angry at everything, I hate everyone and I feel sad for my children. Almost everything about my life has been bad, I am not happy and I never will be and if I live a thousand years, I will still feel the same as I do today. What everyone did to me when I was young was wrong, this is my life now and I have to live with it. I deal with each day as it comes, but my past still haunts me to this day and it always will. The problem is that when you experience life as a child, it should be with your mum, dad, brothers, sisters and other children, playing and exploring the world around you. Going to bed happy, smiling, and waking up with excitement and anticipation as to what you will learn and discover throughout the day. When you are a child, your mind is free to absorb its surroundings and absorb the feelings your body experiences, both physically and emotionally. This is how you learn good from bad and right from wrong. Still as a child, you learn to read and write and to make friends. I never had any of that and now I am beyond the reach of any counselling help or education and I have been so from when I was four years old. From the first day that I was abused, my life changed forever; and when I walked through the institution’s doors in Ireland, my life was set on a path that has destroyed my soul. I never had a childhood and I never will; for me, my childhood was over before it began and my life with the nuns in Ireland was hell. 

My emotional pain today is as strong as it was the day it began and from a very early age, I suffered at the hands of the very people who said they would take good care of me and also at the hands of many other people around them who they called their friends. For me, my pain will never leave me alone. When I go to sleep, it is in my head; and when I wake up, I can see it in the mirror. It is a part of me that I grew up with and is now and always will be embedded within me. Money will not change me or the way I feel; it will not make me happy, it cannot buy me love, friendship or a childhood and if I had one wish, I’d wish I had never been born. Who knows what I might have become if I had the chance to be myself in the beginning? A doctor, a cleaner, a mother. The time that I spent in the institution has made me into a very complicated, difficult and unhappy person and my emotions are cold, I am only waiting to die and I feel like it is taking too long. My family began the path to my destruction, they used me and they abused me, but they never ever loved or wanted me. If I have a soul, then it is lost somewhere between Ireland and Hell, and I do not think I will ever find it again; but time will tell.

Lily — Just to say that I can fully empathise with you. A lot of Goldenbridge Industrial “School” counterparts also had the added burden of suffering horrendous abuse prior to incarceration in the institution.


Irish Industrial ‘Schools’ Capitation Grants

Parent/s had to partly pay for the upkeep of their children in Goldenbridge Industrial ‘School’. Intrinsically this would have been applicable to all parent/s in every industrial ‘school’, who had been ordered to do so by the Courts. My mother was exempt from paying because she was on a disability pension, having suffered with TB. I think it was such a pity, as, moreover, if she did have to pay for my upkeep there would have been tabs kept on her, and in all probability I may have gained some knowledge of her existence during or after Ieaving Goldenbridge at 16? Unfortunately fate never chanced that happening, which was to the detriment of my emotional and all rounded healthiness. In my estimation, I think she was let off the hook, as eventually she went on to gain a very successful job in Birmingham Assay office, and would have been deemed financially fit to pay for my upkeep in Goldenbridge. She spent a quarter of a century in that stable job. She was originally a poultry instructress, having gained experience at a college for farmer’s daughters, but moving to Dublin, there was not any call for jobs of that description. I know that she worked at a farm in Co WIcklow.

There was always chastisement of parent/s and children by management at Goldenbridge when payments for offspring was not forthcoming. The scenes indeed were very unpleasant. No dignity was afforded parents, who would easily have been threatened with visitation rights to their children if nothing was hurriedly done vis-à-vis backlog of money owing to the nuns. This tardiness brought about fierce callousness in the latter. Whatever about the nuns seeking monies owed by parent/s, it should not have been their remit to severely punish and ridicule blameless child inmates. I know that many of my counterparts who had family visitors, were left absolutely mortified and perplexed at the constant showdowns by the unforgiving merciless religious. To give an example: a father, who had been left widowed with a large family – was unable to keep up with payments for his children in Goldenbridge, despite having to go to England to seek work. The eldest child in this case was eight years old. She was not just left to shoulder the responsibility of her three younger siblings, one of whom was a toddler in the institution, but had the added burden of worrying about her father whom she would have witnessed being vilified by the nun in charge for the delayed or non-payment of monies. Subsequently he would use her as a shoulder to cry on for the duration of the whole visitation. The eight year old’s torture would have been three-fold. She would have been torn to bits between the nun making life miserable in the aftermath; coupled with the responsibility of her younger siblings; and lastly the dreaded worry of the parent, who maybe couldn’t manage to pay the nuns. Incidentally – the visitors were allowed no access to the Industrial School, instead, they saw their children and relatives in a small villa nearby the Wicket [wicked] gate. There was always a staff member in attendance, – but then that would have been natural given the status of the inmates. Invariably, the child suffered much stress, which caused her to simply switch off completely. I remember hearing the same survivor – as an adult – saying: “in order to survive the stress, I became invisible.” I empathised fully with her, as I too became invisible in Goldenbridge. But for the antithetical reason of being thoroughly isolated because of having no identity — no family visitors and no siblings to care about at all. I was always conscious of older girls with siblings who were very maternalistic towards their siblings, and was drawn to them for their altruistic natural nature. They fretted more than children who had no families, who were numbed to close human contact. Bernadette Fahy in a painful book about her childhood in Goldenbridge – ‘Freedom of Angels’, says:
“my father, rather than my mother, for some reason was ordered by the courts to pay 10 shillings, per week, per child for the duration that we were detained. Within months however, the Department of Education was writing to my father, seeking to have him pay the money due.”
Bernadette and her brothers, as with myself, had been sentenced up to the age of 16. When I compare this with my mother not having to pay a penny, it seems terrifically unfair. I do feel guilty that a big burden was put on large families. Notwithstanding that Bernadette’s father had two families to boot, which was not uncommon with children.
One of the sad things about caring for ones siblings in the institutions was the fact that at 10 years old the boys were separated and sent to all male institutions, such as Artane. It really affected siblings, some were never to have contact with each other ever again, as the strong bonds that were formed were thus broken, and siblings became strangers. I know one survivor who had grave difficulty deciphering the gender of the Sisters of Mercy nuns in St. Kieran’s Rathdrum and the Christian Brothers at Artane, where he was sent at the tender age of ten. I think it was very sad that in most cases any contact with boy siblings was mostly discouraged by the nuns. There may have been the odd nun who would have tried to make contact. The capitation grants would have followed the boys to their new Industrial ‘Schools’. In all likelihood the boys would have somewhat alleviated the pressures on the male religious Orders, who at one stage were crying out for boys to be sent to them, as they had large buildings to maintain. Hence the religious sending an internal memo to the Department of Education asking the latter why the judiciary was not sending enough children into the institutions, as they had the responsibility of said building maintenance. They had a 500-acre farm at Artane, growing potatoes and vegetables, and the children worked in the fields without pay. This would have come under Industrial School training, so not only were the religious getting Capitation grants, they were also getting free slave labour.
Local authorities were obliged under the 1908 Children Act to pay for children who were sent in to the Reformatories and Industrial Schools. They did not have to pay for children who were admitted on the application of their parents or guardians or for children whose parents were unable to look after them. They also did not pay for children, whose parents were in prison. The local authorities also paid for children under the age of six.

It was the responsibility of the Department of Education to ensure that the minimum of standard of care was seen to, and for the Resident Managers to make sure that children needs were maintained. When I got my records there was a menu amongst them of the dietary needs of Goldenbridge, that simply did not add up to the food that I got as a child in the institution. I know that a lot of Goldenbridge survivors were infuriated when they saw the menu in the inspection reports.
The Ryan commission (originally the Laffoy commission) was established ten years ago and has investigated allegations of abuse in orphanages, industrial schools and church-run hospitals across the republic. The Artane industrial school, in north Dublin, was among the institutions under scrutiny. The five-volume Ryan report, published by the Irish government addressed decades of clerical child abuse and state neglect. It confirmed allegations from former inmates that they were used as unpaid virtual slaves, who made money for religious orders in mini factories, farms, shops and laundry services.

 Ownership of Industrial Schools

At the time when Ireland obtained Independence, the Irish State inherited the capitation method of funding the Reformatories and Industrial Schools that was already in existence during that time. There was never any change to that system of funding until the 1960s.

The main players in the management of the system were religious Orders, the Resident Managers’ Association, the Departments of Education, Justice, Health, and Finance, and the local authorities. The key State roles were oversight and inspection, which were primarily inhabited by the Department of Education.

The Industrial schools and Reformatories were owned by the religious Orders. The latter were responsible for all the whole maintenance of their respective buildings. It was for delicate religious reasons that the British administration decided upon paying for the children as Catholic communities were ever fearful of the other side being given too much power by the authorities.

Most of the children who entered Industrial Schools came from poverty-stricken backgrounds. So it became a duty of care of the State to see that the risks of malnutrition and neglect did not repeat themselves, hence the capitation grant had to be large enough to keep the child adequately cared for to a proper standard.
According to Mazars who was commissioned by the commission to inquire in child abuse to do an analysis on expenditure for Goldenbridge – and other Industrial Schools  – recorded the following:
The records of Carysfort Mother House shown to us indicate payments received between 1939 and 1954 on a monthly basis totalling between approximately €5,000 and €9,000 per annum described as ‘National Education Goldenbridge’. The Carysfort accounts indicate payments totalling between approximately €1,000 and €5,000 per annum to the Goldenbridge Convent and Goldenbridge school expenses. The source of the income is not clear nor is the extent to which the payments related to wages. It is also not clear how much of this income, or expenditure, relates to the Industrial School, rather than the adjacent national school.
Goldenbridge inmates fiercely contended that they were the true owners of St. Joseph’s Holiday Home in Rathdrum. They sincerely believed that the monies accrued from the rosary-bead making went on to purchase the Co. Wicklow buildings and grounds. A statue of Parnell stands right in the centre where the old building used to stand. Survivors reckon that there should be a monument to the child inmates from Goldenbridge.

In the early 1950s, Sr Bianca made the decision to acquire a holiday home for Goldenbridge in Rathdrum, County Wicklow. In 1954, a large house was bought for £3,000. According to Sr Alida, the money earned from the bead-making contributed £1,000 of this purchase price. According to the Opening Statement to the CICA:

… it enabled everyone to have a summer holiday away from the institution. All children would spend some time in the summer at the holiday house and those who could not go home for a holiday spent the entire summer holidays there.Although some former residents did not enjoy going to Rathdrum during the holidays, for most of them it represented a welcome respite from school and, in particular, from bead-making.

A teacher in the Institution, gave evidence that, prior to the purchase of the house in Rathdrum, children went on holidays to other Sisters of Mercy homes that were in the countryside or beside the sea. To spend £3,000 on a house that was only used for a few weeks every year, at a time when food and clothing and basic educational equipment were lacking, does not appear to be the most appropriate allocation of scarce resources.

We have not received any financial information from the Sisters of Mercy in relation to bead-making. We have calculated, based on information from a company that Goldenbridge sold beads to, that the likely range of the annual income from beads was IR£717 per annum to IR£2,869 per annum.
The Children Act 1908 described the roles and responsibilities of the State authorities and the schools as follows:
  • The State is responsible for the certification and inspection of schools.
  • The local authority is responsible for providing for the reception and maintenance of the child in a suitable certified reformatory or industrial school – which responsibility it can discharge by ‘contract with the managers of any certified school for the reception and maintenance therein of youthful offenders or children for whose reception and maintenance the authority are required under this section to make provision.’
  • Both the State and the local authority have a responsibility to provide funding towards the costs of a child maintained in a certified Reformatory or Industrial School.
  • The managers of the certified school have a responsibility, once they have accepted a child, to teach, train, lodge, clothe and feed the child.

These roles were implemented as follows:

  • The Department of Education issued circulars defining the standards of treatment of children in the Schools.
  • The Department of Education operated a process of inspection of schools.
  • The State and local authorities provided funding through the capitation grant, the primary grant and, occasionally, other grants for specific purposes.
  • The religious Orders owned and managed the schools, providing clergy to act as managers and staff, and hiring lay staff.

The Resident Managers’ Association acted as a vehicle for interaction with the Department of Education, including a role in seeking increased funding. The legislation that established the Industrial Schools system only provided for the maintenance of the children.The Department of Education’s Rules and Regulations were clear as to what the minimum standards were. Rule 5 stipulated that

the children shall be supplied with neat, comfortable clothing in good repair, suitable to the season of the year, not necessarily uniform either in material or colour.

Rule 6 provided minimum standards for an adequate diet:

The Children shall be supplied with plain wholesome food, according to a Scale of Dietary to be drawn up by the Medical Officer of the School and approved by the Inspector. Such food shall be suitable in every aspect for growing children actively employed and supplemented in the case of delicate or physically under-developed children with special food as individual needs require. No substantial alterations in the Dietary shall be made without previous notice to the Inspector. A copy of the Dietary shall be given to the Cook and a further copy kept in the Manager’s Office.

I wrote an article some years ago about the hunger and starvation in Goldenbridge.

Every morning in the chapel children fainted through weakness, because of the lack of food in their growing bodies. It was shameful. They were given out to by the nuns and told that they were seeking attention. The nuns were most mortified that they should faint in front of the rest of the convent nuns. there was no sympathy shown to them or any help given from any kind of nurse, as there were no professional nurses employed in the institution and the nuns were only trained in education or kitchen work, if they were interns.

The fainting children were left to the mercy of older children who had over the years somehow become experts at solving the problems, like getting the fainting children to bend their heads below their knees. The food they were in receipt of did not compute nor was it appropriate to in disparity to the quantity of hard manual labour that on a daily basis  they were subjected to in the institution. Excepting of course on special Feast Days.

Goldenbridge State funding

Part 7 St. Vincent’s Industrial School – Goldenbridge

The application of State funding to the care of children in the institution

7.1 A limited amount of financial information is available in respect of Goldenbridge industrial school:

  • — No accounts were available for the period 1939–50

— Accounts were available for the period 1955–69 in six-monthly sets with the exception of the six-month periods ended 31st December 1957, 30th June 1968 and 30th June 1969. The period ended 31st December 19606 has also been omitted from our analysis as this appears to be a duplication of the 30th June 1960 accounts and therefore is of questionable validity. Two different sets of accounts were made available to us for 1953. For the purpose of this analysis we have used SOMGB-00568/12 and SOMGB-00568/13. In the years 19617 and 19638 we note that the accounts of the Goldenbridge do not appear to tot correctly. We have used the detailed analysis in the accounts rather than relying on sub-totals as presented.

7.2  We have not received any financial information from the Sisters of Mercy in relation to bead-making. We have calculated, based on information from a company that Goldenbridge sold beads to, that the likely range of the annual income from beads was IR£717 per annum to IR£2,869 per annum.

7.3  We note that, with the exception of the 1953 accounts, there is no record of the school having received primary grant funding in respect of teachers in the Industrial School.

7.4  A building account was operated during the period under review. We received accounts for the period 1961–66 in six-monthly sets with the exception of the six months ended 30th June 1962 and 30th June 1964.

7.5 The income and expenditure statements for the industrial school, for the years provided, show a surplus of €33,409

7.6 The most significant items of expenditure can be summarised as follows:

Exhibit 4

1951–60 1961–69
% %
Dietary expenses 34 26
Wages 21 18
Clothing 12 12
Building repairs and decorations 11 16
Fuel and light 7 7
Furniture and fittings 3 3
Medical 1 2
Other 11 16
Total 100 100

The wages identified above consist of staff wages, payments to the Resident Manager and payments to the reverend mother.

7.8  Capital expenditure in the school account amounted to €68,745 recorded in the income and expenditure statements received. This was mainly attributable to repairs to building, decorations and furniture and fittings. Capital expenditure financed from the building account during the period 1961–66 amounted to €90,000, giving a total capital expenditure of €158,745 for the period reviewed. Due to the incomplete nature of the records we are unable to determine whether the lodgements to the building account represent capital grants or general funding of the school which was allocated to capital expenditure. It is unclear how much of this fund was used for properties other than for the Industrial School; although based on a review of a sample of such expenditure we did note a certificate for payment in respect of Rathdrum in the amount of IR£750 – suggesting that the fund was not applied solely to the Industrial School.9

Commentary on the effects of changes in the number of children in the relevant institutions over the period 1939–69

7.9  The number of children committed to Goldenbridge Industrial School peaked in the early 1960s and then began to decline in the late 1960s.

A commentary on staffing/student ratios over the period of the review

7.10  We understand that the staffing consisted of two nuns (both teaching and one having the dual responsibility of resident manager), two lay teachers and between approximately 8 and 10 other staff (seamstress, domestic, etc.). We understand that numbers of teaching staff remained constant during the period.

Financial consequences for the relevant institutions as a result of caring for the children over the period 1939–69

7.11 There was a surplus in the bank account of the Industrial school at 30th November 1969 of €16,265

7.12  The financial consequences for Goldenbridge of caring for the children over the period 1939–69 may be characterised as being close to break-even. This view is consistent with the available financial statements. We note, however, that the school accounts do not include funds from the industrial activity at the school, and that they do not include any amount in respect of primary grant received, with the exception of an amount of IR£878 in 1953.

7.13  There were peak years for payments of wages and salaries in 1953 and 1954 of approximated €4,900 per annum. These levels were not reached again until 1967. We note from the payments books, which are only available subsequent to 1960, that they show a payment, recorded as wages, to the reverend mother of IR£90 per month. We do not know whether this payment actually represented wages or if the funds were used for the school or for another purpose.

Archives: Forum

2006-11-01 17:19:54 Marie-Therese O’Loughlin


Acquired in the 1940s, & already in the 1950s the establishment was drawing complaints. Judge H. A. McCarthy had been making frequent representations to both relevant Departments about conditions in childcare institutions, and to the Department Of Education regarding Marlborough House specifically. A colleague on the bench (quoted by the judge) had been told by the Marlborough House Superintendent that bedding was being left for years unlaundered and not disinfected; that he (the Superintendent) had learned that there was no money to pay capable attendants (in the course of a discussion with the relevant Department Of Education official); and that the Superintendent had protested at the failure to appoint an official visitor.

Complaints – largely concerning physical abuse – were still mounting in the 1960s, and were taken in evidence by the (Kennedy) Commission of Enquiry into Reformatory and Industrial Schools. But even when judges and social workers/probation officers complained, the Department Of Education would scarcely reply. In 1969, shortly before its final Report, the Kennedy Commission wrote to the Department Of Education, saying that already in 1942 the building had been condemned as dangerous; that staff were untrained and unsuitable and recruited from the local labour exchange, and given to brutality]; and that at Marlborough House…is so dangerous from every aspect that something must be done immediately to eradicate those dangers”.

Finally, the boys there rioted. There was a staff walk-out – followed by more rioting. Then prison officers were sent in to replace staff – under the administration of a Department Of Justice official. He recalls: “The whole place was fouled with excrement, the bedding was urine soaked and infested with lice…Every bit of furniture was broken.” Desmond O’Malley, installed as Minister For Justice, even complained to the Department Of Education that his officials had recently been obstructed in trying to run the place. In 1972, the Department closed Marlborough House.

Anthony Keating is a Government of Ireland Post-Doctoral Research Fellow in the Humanities and Social Sciences, based in the School of Communications at Dublin City University.

Will source information here.

The above information = Judge H. A. McCarthy. It’s such a pity that the voices of infants hauled before the judge in Dublin Disctrict courts weren’t heard. Older children could vent their distain, especially those who knew how to differentiate because of having lived in the outside world & because of having caregivers of some description or other. The infants unfortunately didn’t either have the luxury of social workers or probation officers to defend them, despite having criminal records from the ages, of three/four years onwards (affectionless thieves!)  IN THE PAST I WAS EXCRUCIATINGLY EMBITTERED WITH JUDGE McCARTHY, BECAUSE HE INCARCERATED ME INTO GOLDENBRIDGE INDUSTRIAL SCHOOL FOR A WHOLE CHILDHOOD. EVERY TIME I LOOKED AT HIS SIGNATURE ON MY COMMITTAL FORM WHICH I RECEIVED SOME YEARS AGO. IT QUITE LITERALLY SENT SHIVERS DOWN MY SPINE. IT BROUGHT SO MUCH INFURIATING, INTENSE DISPLEASURE TO THE FORE. THE NEGATIVE EMOTIONALITY, INDIGNATION, IRE, WRATH, AROUSED IN ME ON MERELY GLANCING AT SAME NEARLY DROVE ME TO SHEER MADNESS. BUT ALAS, RELIEF OF SORTS WAS EVENTUALLY FOUND ON READING ARTICLE ABOVE & ON HEARING OTHER POSITIVE STORIES OF OTHERS, WHOM HE GAVE A SECOND CHANCE – I NOW REALISE HE WAS ALSO A KIND MAN WHO DID CARE SOMEWHAT ABOUT VULNERABLE CHILDREN.


  1. Marie-Thérèse, My name is Tony Keating and I have just stumbled on your posting re my article on Marlborough House. I thought you may also like to know that Justice McCarthy was such a thorn in the side of the Department of Education in relation to the appalling conditions in industrial and reformatory schools that a civil servant suggested setting him up to ruin his career.
    It is one of the strange conundrums that people like McCarthy and Justice Eileen Kennedy still committed children to the schools whilst working behind the scenes for reform of a system they knew to be, in large parts rotten. They were despite, I believe, being at heart caring individuals, creators of the establishment whose sense of duty and loyalty to their position, state and church precluded them from taking more public and dramatic action. McCarthy was particularly vociferous in the background with the Department of Education, it is a pity he and others did not feel able to break cover and go public. They were, however, creatures of their age, class and upbringing. I doesn’t make it right but may help explain it. Take care, Tony Keating, Edge Hill University UK.

Is this the same Viscountess Jackson I knew in Goldenbridge?

Is this the same Viscountess Jackson I knew in Goldenbridge?

08 MAY 2005
Sir – Gosh! I read recently, in another Sunday newspaper, the story about Viscountess Geraldine Jackson and her horrific time in Goldenbridge, Dublin. While I was there I met a girl, also called Geraldine Jackson. However, the Geraldine I knew didn’t work in a rosary bead factory until 3am. We usually finished in the bead room two-to-three hours after starting. Usual start time was 4pm. Even the slowest would be finished by 7.30pm, and that would include a tea break. This Geraldine didn’t abscond in terror from Goldenbridge at 16 years of age, but was placed in nurse training in St Ultans Hospital by Sr Xaveria. Geraldine possibly did drink from a toilet bowl (I know I didn’t, especially as there was a tap in the yard). Some of the residents might have at night-time as we didn’t have sinks upstairs, but they must have had very long necks, for the bowls were the old-fashioned very high ones. Flushing got water for some, and don’t forget, in those days, this would not have been seen as unhygienic. The poor Viscountess possibly did have teeth extracted by a dentist, like the rest of us, but I see hers were “yanked out . . . needlessly”. The Geraldine I knew wasn’t kept in a state of starvation, but like the rest of us was always “starving”, especially before meal times. There’s a big difference. Geraldine is perfectly aware that Sr Xaveria always had the toddlers in the nursery running after her when she walked in. She’d hand them sweets, pat them on their little heads, and they’d run after her pulling at her habit. Wonder if the two Geraldine’s are related?
However, the Geraldine I knew didn’t work in a rosary bead factory until 3am. We usually finished in the bead room two-to-three hours after starting. Usual start time was 4pm.
Some older children worked well into the early hours of the morning to get boxes of rosary beads ready for the factory. I can’t say for sure whether it was up to 3: 00 a.m.. Nevertheless, I can mostly corroborate what Geraldine says, as, I too was one of those inmates working into the very late hours. Besides – what would Angel Howard know about Geraldine Jackson working into the late hours, if she is certain that the rosary beads were finished by 7: 00 p.m. at the latest? Wouldn’t she have been tucked up in her iron bed and army blankets at 9: 00 p.m. in probably Our Lady’s dormitory, or in a modern bed in the then newly built annexe called Carmel where all the good acquiescent children slept?

Geraldine possibly did drink from a toilet bowl (I know I didn’t, especially as there was a tap in the yard).

During the time of the Goldenbridge controversy, it was claimed by someone close to Sr. Xaveria that they (her gang of cronies from the LOVE contingency) were to say to the commission to inquire into child abuse (CICA) that ‘there was a tap in the yard.’ I do have a vague recollection of a tap in the yard, but it can’t have been there always. Or, if it was it was hardly in working order. The reason I say this, is because I used to scoop up water from the cistern and toilet bowl at the end of the yard, as did other children. I also lifted water out of the toilet with a marmalade can at the end of the yard. I can still see the inner orange coloured reflection, as the water danced and moved inside the can. I can’t for the life of me fathom as to why other children and myself would have been drinking out of the toilets in the yard if there was a tap there? Whether it worked is another thing! However, there would have been no access to the yard at night-time, or the washroom, or laundry in the earlier years before Carmel was built, so that meant no access to water. Children who wet the bed were not allowed to drink fluids after 6: 00 p.m.

The following paragraph comes directly from the commission to inquire into child abuse:
Q:…but in his report he records her confirming that: “Fear of and actual beatings and verbal abuse was a matter of routine. And that the general account of children, for example, waiting on landings was accurate…Wetting was defined as a crime and, therefore, punishable through humiliation and physical beatings. Sr. Fabian confirmed the allegations in relation to the tumble drier and drinking from the toilet cistern. She also confirmed the bead making and that failure to obey rules was normally punished by physical beatings”.
Re: Florence Horseman-Hogan who had a group called Let Our Voices Emerge [LOVE]. It consisted of Sr. Xaveria supporters. The group fought for the nun up until the time of the release of the Ryan Report. They then had to concede to the findings discovered in the report. Thereafter the group disbanded with its tail between its legs. The group subsequently apologised.
On a relevant note to tie in with the contents of this ghastly letter to the media by what appears to me to be from a pseudonym and maybe even someone who was never in Goldenbridge, but would know something of the background.
I would like to point out here that I was told by a third party at the height of the Goldenbridge controversy that Florence Horseman-Hogan allegedly got a person to go online and let it be known that I had an uncle a priest and to divulge details of the farm where my relations lived. I was dumbfounded at the time at the nastiness of these people when I read about it online. The idea was to intimidate me to shut-up. At the time I had never spoken out about my personal family. It was such a shock. It took me a very long time to come to terms with it. I had been writing pseudonymously at the time. There were other people doing similar things.
I don’t have to worry any longer, as not only have the religious in my family passed away, I also decided to go public about my institutional past. I have nothing to hide. I’m as free as a bird. I would urge all survivors of industrial “schools” to not hide behind pseudonyms, as that just takes away their valuable power.
The reason I point it out here is because Angel Howard, who is obviously wrote under a pseudonym, appeared to be trying to intimidate Geraldine, who was also speaking out about the atrocities that occurred in Goldenbridge.
…and that would include a tea break.
What tea-break? That’s the first I’ve heard of children having a tea-break in Goldenbridge during the era in question here. I think what the author meant to say, was Supper, which children had at 6: p.m. Supper that consisted of black potently bitter sugarless cocoa and two sometimes smelly soggy white thin-slices of bread, that came out of an aluminium container in the mice-infested pantry. From 3:00 p.m., when one slice of bread was given, along with the leftover scraps from St. Ita’s staff-room, that were thrown into the yard from a window at children and the two slices of bread at 6: 00 p.m. Supper that was the staple diet until next morning.

The poor Viscountess possibly did have teeth extracted by a dentist, like the rest of us, but I see hers were “yanked out . . . needlessly”

How utterly condescending to address a survivor of Goldenbridge in that manner. I would surmise that the author is personally digging at Geraldine’s title, as opposed to addressing the ‘teeth’ issue.

Geraldine is perfectly aware that Sr Xaveria always had the toddlers in the nursery running after her when she walked in. She’d hand them sweets, pat them on their little heads, and they’d run after her pulling at her habit. Wonder if the two Geraldine’s are related?

What a load of old baloney. Sr. Xaveria beat the living daylights out of small and big children – who were lined up every single morning in St. Patrick’s classroom – that was meant for teaching children. They feared for their lives of this fearsome nun who frothed at the mouth and danced, as she rained down the shiny bark of a tree on them. Some  children even wet themselves they were so distraught. Last thing at night the same nun was to be seen flogging children who would have been waiting for hours on end in sleeveless nighties and bare feet on a cold landing, just outside her cell.

There was a room – I wouldn’t call it a nursery, as there were no special facilities befitting a nursery where babies and toddlers were strapped on potties for long durations. They were fed on these potties, and they slept on these potties. In all my time in Goldenbridge I never witnessed Sr. Xaveria going to that room to nurture and give them sweets. I really do not know where Angel Howard gets this information? Is she one of the clan who was told to say ‘there was a tap in the yard?’ ‘Pulling and running after her habit,’ is this for real? I never saw the nun lift a child in her arms from the day I went there to the day I left. I do know though, that she did soften when she went to Rathdrum, and maybe there she was openly kinder to children, as she would not have had the stresses and strains that she so obviously had to contend with in Goldenbridge. Rathdrum was also very open, and not an enclosed prison-like environment, so she would not have got away with such brutal behaviour there, that was the norm in Goldenbridge. Sr. Xaveria ruled the roost, and took it upon herself to boss everyone in sight. Children, nuns in the convent, parents, workers, the whole shebang. How dare Angel Howard make snide remarks such as “Wonder if the two Geraldine’s are related?” I too wonder if Angel Howard and Florence Horseman-Hogan are one and the same person with respect of this abominable article. It reeks of the latter.

Another letter was also written to the the media that followed the one above:

Sir – Such heartbreaking times for young women who found themselves pregnant in the Forties, Fifties, Sixties, and even Seventies, especially when the fathers didn’t want to know. Parents would have murder in mind if their offspring came home ‘on the double’. Wasn’t it great to have the nuns and even the horrible laundries, as it was better than suicide for lots of them. Parting with the babies when given up for adoption must have been soul-destroying, especially if they had time to bond with them.How times have changed. It’s good that a more human and natural view is taken in modern times, but the pendulum has swung to the extreme. They get a bit of money now and are welcome at home. Sure it’s almost cool to have a babe in tow.
Kathleen Corrigan, Cootehill, Co Cavan.
The following is evidence given to the commission to inquire into child institutional at Goldenbridge in 2009. Bear in mind that I was told by someone close to Sr. X that word was sent around to her supporters that they were to allegedly say to the CICA that there was a fountain in the yard. I encountered one of Sr. X’s supporters, and remember very well, a sister of hers – whom, I think she did not know was her real sister during her time in Goldenbridge – being sent to outside secondary school. Although, the latter may not have been treated as a pet by staff – the same girl was also privileged to be one of the top Irish dancers. I remember a photo of the ‘privileged’ girl in a black uniform – with sash that was worn in Irish dancing competitions in the earlier days – being pinned to the inside of a press at the back of St. Patrick’s classroom.

Drinking water from toilets

7.377 It was alleged that the children in Goldenbridge did not have access to water during the day, and had to resort to drinking water from either the toilet bowl or the cistern.

7.378 One witness described it as follows:

We used to all drink out of the toilets. There was toilets at the end of the yard, we used to go down there. There was no taps, you just flushed the chain and drink the water.

7.379 When asked whether he recalled a drinking fountain in the yard, he said:

No. There used to be a little push handle thing down, that hardly ever worked. I remember it did work, it didn’t always work. I am sure it was there … We used to … drink out of the toilets anyway. You followed what the other kids done.

7.380 Another witness said:

In between meals there was no facility for a glass of water, there was nothing, nowhere you could, we didn’t have money to buy anything. There was no machines, no vending in those days. Nothing like that. You would go to the toilets where they had the loose top and you would scoop water up, you would scoop it up in your hand or you would get something like– I don’t know how to describe it. It was like a funnel from the big dryers, there was a little connection, you would get it and you would drink the water from the cistern. I mean, you wouldn’t think whether this is healthy or unhealthy.

7.381 One witness said:

We used to drink water out of the toilets, out of the either the bowl or the cistern depending on how tall you were … I mean, I see in a statement from Sr Alida she said that a tap was in the yard, I don’t know where it was because I was never allowed have a drink out of it.

7.382 When asked if she remembered a tap or drinking fountain in the yard, she said:

I was there for twelve years and I don’t remember seeing a tap in the yard. I do remember drinking water out of the toilets, out of the cistern, out of the bowl.

7.383 Another witness said:

Because they wouldn’t give you water. You asked for water and you weren’t given it. So obviously to try and survive, you would come out, you would be in the yard and you would go into the toilets in the yard and flush the toilets and drink water from the toilets. That wasn’t just a once-off, that was on a good number of occasions.

7.384 Another witness, when asked about the existence of a drinking fountain in the yard, said that if there had been a fountain in the yard it must have been broken‘because we used to drink out literally of the toilet or lift up the cistern, the top of the toilet’.

7.385 Sr Alida stated there was a drinking fountain in the yard which came from Liverpool and was marked ‘hooligan proof’. It remained in working order until the time she left Goldenbridge. She also stated that children could get water from the kitchen and a small bathroom under the stairs.

7.386 One explanation for the lack of access to water is in relation to the problem of bed-wetting which, according to Sr Alida, was ’a huge problem’ that existed in Goldenbridge. Sr Alida said they had sought medical advice, and one of the recommendations was the deprivation of all fluids before bedtime.

7.387 However, Sr Venetia stated to Mr Crowley that children used to drink from the toilet cistern. In his report he stated:

Sr Venetia confirmed the allegations in relation to the tumble dryer and drinking from the toilet cistern.

7.388 The Sisters of Mercy denied that children were deprived of water as there was a drinking fountain in the yard. They conceded, however, that on foot of medical advice they deprived children who were prone to wetting the bed of water from a certain time in the afternoon. These children may have resorted to covertly drinking from the toilet. They asserted that this is another example of how a practice became distorted and exaggerated by witnesses.

“Dear Daughter” v “Goldenbridge Girl”

Dear Daughter
Irish Times, 1 May 1996, Letter from Ann Mahr

I am a former “Goldenbridge Girl” I was in Goldenbridge Orphanage from 1955, age 2 weeks to 1965. I have nothing but happy memories of my childhood during that time. When I saw the media coverage of alleged abuse in the orphanage I was shocked. I have shared many of my happy memories of my childhood with my children as most parents do but when they heard these allegations they felt I had misled them.

While I wouldn’t dream of disputing these allegations I feel that perhaps the whole thing wasn’t investigated properly. Before the media coverage nobody consulted me about my time at Goldenbridge or consulted me before a photograph of me in a group of girls which included Christine Buckley was printed in a Sunday newspaper. A number of people have contacted me who were also in Goldenbridge at the time who wondered where these allegations were coming from as we were not aware of any of it.

I feel now that my childhood has been taken from me, and just because I was unlucky enough to be an orphan nobody bothered to hear my side of the story. I sympathise with those who have suffered pain because of things which they endured, however, the loss of my childhood has caused me a lot of mental anguish and a sense of a loss of identity. “Who am I now?” Being referred to as an “inmate” of Goldenbridge by Pat Kenny horrified me as I always assumed that I was just a little girl who had no parents but who had caring people looking after me in what was my home for almost 10 years.

How do I now get my childhood and identity back? Who can help me? What about the unfortunate mothers who were forced to give their children up for one reason or another? Surely they are in anguish as to how their child was treated. This needs to be investigated thoroughly for people like me to get on with their lives. If a documentary follow up to Dear Daughter is to be made I hope the producers will research it properly and look into where these babies are that were supposedly strapped to potties as I was one of these babies.

Yours, etc.,

(formerly Teresa A. Norton), Ballyfermot, Dublin 10.

Teresa Norton definitely had to be a La La (pet) at Goldenbridge. Pets were the bane of our lives, as they were treated so differently to the rest of the inmates. They were singled out for special care. For example, they were allowed to wear their hair long and had special aeroplane ribbons. They went to outside school. They were petted right in front of us, and were called by endearing names, while the rest of us were just the scum of the earth. They were given clothes that belonged to us – given by host families. They went out with rich families, while poor families were chosen for the rest.

I don’t remember Teresa Norton at all. I would have to see a photo in order to recognise, or perhaps know what her number was in the institution. What a lucky person she was/is that she has not been psychologically affected by Goldenbridge industrial school, since she was only two weeks old. I’ve met many survivors who have blocked out the reality of their childhood there.

I’ve met past inmates who worshipped the ground that Sr. Xaveria walked upon. The same  inmates were given the opportunity to go to outside school and excel, and would have been treated leniently by Sr. Xaveria in Goldenbridge.

‘My friend, Sr Xavieria, the ‘evil monster” v ‘Spare a thought for abuse victims’

My friend, Sr Xavieria, the ‘evil monster’

Florence Horsman-Hogan recalls the contested legacy of a controversial nun,


10 MARCH 2013

My GOOD friend Sister Maura Lally passed away in late January in her early 90s. Aged 87, despite having undergone surgery, she was still well known for hopping on a bus and heading into a prison or city-centre flat where she’d visit some of her ‘past pupils’. Or sometimes, no matter how tired or unwell she was – she would diligently write letters and cards to send to her ‘past pupils’ who wrote to her or rang her, wanting to keep in touch with their ‘mother’. 

Maura had gone to Goldenbridge Industrial School as a young nun in the Forties. She became resident manager in the mid-Fifties. She described her time there as one of “hard work, blood, sweat and tears”, as the school had up to 190 pupils with six staff to look after them. I just can’t imagine nowadays any teacher or childcare worker accepting 24-hour care of over 30 children each. Scabies, rickets, dysentery, malnourishment, child brutality and poverty was the norm for post-war Ireland, but at least within the walls of the school the sisters felt they could provide some sort of safety.

She appeared to have great memories. I don’t know if she was just trying to fool herself – or whether she actually did manage, as a young woman with no childcare experience, to achieve some level of happiness in what appeared to me to be a world of drudgery and broken dreams.

In 1963 she was transferred from Goldenbridge to a smaller residential care facility run by the Sisters of Mercy in Rathdrum, Co Wicklow. Although she would describe her time in Rathdrum as very happy, always, to me, she appeared to hanker for Goldenbridge.

Her support of others was legendary – making wedding dresses and even helping to pay for the weddings of former pupils. She was also big into encouraging girls to advance in education at a time when education of females wasn’t so hot in Ireland.

But here’s the rub. Maura, otherwise known as Sr Xavieria Lally, has also gone down in history as one of the most evil monsters to ever care for a child. Serious allegations of child abuse as the resident manager in Goldenbridge were featured in a programme called ‘Dear Daughter’ in 1996. The programme, which achieved worldwide fame, portrayed her as an evil child-beater, even bursting one girl’s leg open with a baseball bat, such were the beatings she gave.

A Prime Time programme featuring Maura and many past pupils from Goldenbridge was aired later. At the time Maura was 76. Pupils came forward to accuse and defend her with equal fervour. In one case, a girl directly contradicted an allegation by her sister that Sr Xavieria had thrown her into an old disused ‘furnace room’ and left her there for days, stating that it was a housekeeper who’d locked her there for less than an hour

By her own admission, Maura admitted “she used the stick” far more than she’d ever like to think about – but this was in the ‘spare the rod and spoil the child’ era.

Yes, there was abuse in Goldenbridge. But to hold one nun, herself a victim of the terrible poverty and oppression that had swept post-war Ireland, to blame for a poorly State financed, overcrowded and understaffed institution was cruelty itself. Even in the final Ryan Report, the most savage allegations made so publicly against her were omitted.

Despite garda investigations of the allegations of severe physical abuse in ‘Dear Daughter’, no criminal charges were ever brought against Sr Xavieria Lally. Such was her public vilification, that when 20 of her former pupils from Rathdrum tried to get a support letter published in the media, they had to get a solicitor to do it for them.

I don’t know the full truth of Goldenbridge. I only know through my own upbringing by a Sister of Mercy who was also accused of abuse in the Redress Board, that while there were many guilty of visiting terrible abuses on those of us who were vulnerable and unprotected – not all of those accused were guilty.

Irish Independent


Spare a thought for abuse victims

17 MARCH 2013Madam – Florence Horsman-Hogan’s eulogy (Sunday Independent, March 10, 2013), to “my good friend Sr Maura Lally” who died in January is at best nihilistic and at worst laborious for hundreds of survivors/victims of Goldenbridge Industrial School who suffered so cruelly at the hands of Sr Maura Lally, better known as Sr Xaveria.Ms Horsman-Hogan’s experience in an institution in the west of Ireland run by the Sisters of Mercy was brief in comparison to many of us and thankfully a happy one. And so it was for a number of children incarcerated in institutionsAccording to Ms Horsman-Hogan, Sr Xaveria described her time in Goldenbridge as one of “hard work, blood, sweat and tears”. Ms Horsman-Hogan appears to be totally confused here. Goldenbridge was a regime of slavery, physical, emotional and sexual abuse, starvation, humiliation, deprivation, blood, sweat, tears and much more for the most vulnerable, the children incarcerated there.Ms Horsman-Hogan perceives Sr Xaveria as the abused victim and we the innocent as the perpetrators of the abuse. Ms Horsman-Hogan purports that Sr Xaveria’s “support of others was legendary – making wedding dresses and even helping to pay for the weddings of pupils”. Sr Xaveria made a wedding dress for the following reason: she was transferred from Goldenbridge to St Kieran’s, Rathdrum, another industrial school run by the Sisters of Mercy in 1963. The bride-to-be had spent her childhood in Goldenbridge then, for no apparent reason, she vanished into a Magdalene laundry in Wexford, under the age of 16 years. Some years later, Sr Xaveria drove to Wexford, collected this young woman and brought her to St Kieran’s to work for no pay. In time, that young woman met her future husband and wished to marry. Without any means, it was impossible for her to buy or pay for her wedding dress to be made. That is the reason that Sr Xaveria made a wedding dress and paid for a meagre wedding breakfast. No honeymoon was allowed. Instead, Sr Xaveria marched to their new home on the first day of their honeymoon and ordered the bride to return to work immediately. She had no alternative.

If “Sr Xaveria was so big into education”, how come only a handful went to the nearby secondary school, given that Goldenbridge school was free, thanks to the generosity of the late Archbishop Cullen as stated in the Ryan Report?

The Dear Daughter documentary in 1996 was a small example of the horrors perpetrated in Goldenbridge. It was not stated in that documentary that “one girl’s leg was bust open with a baseball bat”, rather what I stated was that I received a savage attack with a stick which was like the bark of a tree and necessitated 80 to 90 stitches. This happened when I passed a letter to the breadman begging him to bring our nightmare into the public domain. Sadly, my letter found its way back into the hands of Sr Xaveria and hence I received that savage beating. With regards to the furnace episode in ‘Dear Daughter’, firstly, the furnace at that time was not disused as stated by Ms Horsman-Hogan. It was in daily use. The sister who contradicted her younger sister, on the Prime Time programme following the Dear Daughter documentary, of being locked in the furnace did not arrive at Goldenbridge until three years after this incident occurred. Her young sister was only a few days in Goldenbridge when this ordeal occurred.

The howling of this young girl in the furnace continues to haunt me even to this day – I remember it vividly.

Now that Sr Xaveria has passed away, Ms Horsman-Hogan might spare a thought for the hundreds of survivors/victims that Sr Xaveria has left behind. Given Ms Horsman-Hogan’s profession, that of a nurse, I find it difficult to have to remind her of the qualities of a good nurse, qualities such as sympathy, understanding, compassion and empathy are paramount in the care of sick children or children who find themselves, through no fault of their own, in State care. Ms Horsman-Hogan’s stay, as stated earlier, was happy under the care of the Sisters of Mercy. She was born lucky. The majority of us were not.

Christine Buckley,

Director & Co-Founder, Aislinn Education & Support Centre for Survivors of Institutional Abuse, Dublin 1

Irish Independent

I don’t know the full truth of Goldenbridge.

Exactly. Ms. Florence-Horseman-Hogan knows nothing about Goldenbridge. As with Sr. Helena O’Donoghue, the then Leader of the provincial order of the southern region of the Sisters of Mercy, she is a mere third party. It appears that she is suffering with confirmation bias, and wouldn’t that be only natural seeing that she was a good friend to Sr. Xaveria. I don’t doubt one bit that Sr. Xaveria R.I.P. didn’t do good work at Goldenbridge. In fact she took on too much responsibility, and dominated everyone. Nuns, children, and parents.

Open all adoption records now

Calls to release Irish adoption records

Dan Griffin Thu, Oct 4, 2012,  Irish Times:

Two women who were “illegally” adopted at birth have called on the Minister for Children to release State records which would enable them to find their biological mothers.Theresa Tinggal and Maria Dumbell travelled to Dublin from the United Kingdom to hand a letter to Frances Fitzgerald asking her to make available records relating to informal adoptions in the 1950s.Ms Tinggal and Ms Dumbell estimate housands of children were taken from women deemed unfit for parenthood and put up for adoption during the 20th century.“[I was] not adopted in the normal sense, but informally or illegally,” Ms Tinggal said. “I was handed over to my adoptive parents at two-days-old and then registered as their legal child.”

She discovered she was adopted a decade ago when, aged 48, she was told by a family relative. “Since then I have been searching relentlessly,” she said at a press conference in Dublin. “I still haven’t discovered my birth mother or discovered the circumstances surrounding my birth.”

Ms Dumbell found out she was adopted when she applied for a passport aged 20. When she requested a copy of her birth certificate for the application, she was told by Custom House that no such certificate existed under her name.

Both women pursued the Health Board for files which would help them to establish the circumstances of their births but received only partial records. The board granted Ms Tinggal documentation of her life from the age of two to 16 years, the last statement of which read: “Theresa still doesn’t know that she is adopted”.

Ms Dumbell received a similar document covering her life from the age of 14 months.

Ms Tinggal and Ms Dumbell said they have been frustrated by the HSE, which has told them it cannot legally release files relating to informal adoptions. Many of the records are currently in private hands, namely religious and other societies.

Independent Dublin North TD Clare Daly joined the women in calling for the drafting of legislation to allow for the release of the records.

“It is known that these records exist,” she said. “All the powers of the State should be used immediately… to ensure that the children taken from their mothers can find their mothers’ details.

“It is not good enough to talk about guaranteeing children’s rights in a new referendum if we continue to ignore children failed in the past.”

I pasted the whole article here, as the Irish Times articles disappear into archives when they’re dated.

Calls to release Irish adoption records – Irish News, World News ..


Ireland Adoption Registry

Looking for records of an adoption | The National Archives

Adoption records « Genealogy Guide NI & UK

Adoption Rights Alliance

Not a happy Mother’s Day

Sorry to put the kibosh on Mother’s Day. The reality, is however, that there are children all over the world in orphanages who have not got mothers to wish them greetings on this special day. So … please, those of you who do have mothers who love them, please check your privilege throughout the year, and try to remember that there are children of the ilk in the photo, who have never been as lucky as you’ve been to have mothers to embrace them and tell them they are special. Spare some kind words for the motherless and fatherless of all ages.

Maya Angelou said in a Tweet that she became a full person because of knowing a mother’s love. She became what she is today because of knowing the strength of a mother’s tender care. A mothers love carries one through life, and helps those who have had the advantage of knowing a mothers love to be far better and stronger people.

This child lost her mother so she drew her on the floor in an orphanage. Retweeted by Suz

My mother liberated me with her love! #LoveMaya

Hence, Maya Angelou being able to shine. People who are loved are indeed liberated, and not held back in life because of all the emotional pain and loss of attachment figures.

Vaccine trials on babies of unwed mothers in institutions

I remember during the commission to inquire into child abuse the vaccine trials being investigated, then not so very long into the investigations they were mysteriously dispensed with, to the utter disappointment of all those involved. It was during the time of Judge Mary Laffoy, who was so much respected by survivors of industrial “schools” for the meticulous way she handled her work. There was a sense of real sadness felt by survivors when she stepped down from her mighty task. She was stonewalled by the government and the religious who interfered greatly with her responsibilities.

(Click on Judge Laffoy’s name to see main points contained in her resignation letter.

Vaccine Trials – The Commission to Inquire into Child Abuse

I can’t bring myself to dwell on this subject matter. Not even to click on to the links. I watched only a small part of the video before switching off. It is far too harrowing. I was overcome with nausea thinking about the abandoned mites that were tested on, because there was no-one to look out for them. Not only that, the scientists were not satisfied with testing on them while they were alive, they even tested on them into their deaths. Abhorrent! They were answerable to no-one, because the babies were products of ‘fallen women’, and therefore considered mere nonentities. Talk about Nazi Germany! Talk about Industrial “Schools” which were disbanded in Britain in 1933, and still in existence in Ireland into the seventies! Science at its worst! Shame on the scientists who carried out thE despicable task of experimenting on babies. Shame on Ireland for allowing it to happen to babies who were seen as fodder because they were considered rejects of Irish society.

I personally ended up in hospital as a five year old suffering with pertussis. I was on the dying list. It makes me shudder to think that some scientist could have jabbed me whilst there, as Industrial “School” children were indiscriminately tested on by scientists.

There was a baby who died after a few days of entering Goldenbridge. I don’t think it had had anything to do with vaccinations. I’m not qualified to say. Nonetheless, I’m just reminded of baby Howe in connection with this morbid subject. However, there is a dark cloud which hangs over her mysterious death.

Goldenbridge: Baby Marion Howe Dies? | Marie-Thérèse O’Loughlin 

Apr 19, 2012 – The following Vatican Crimes Report on the tragic death of Baby Marion Howe speaks for itself. It’s so harrowing even to read it as too many .

There were also new babies who died in other mother and baby homes. Methinks that they too could possibly have been tested on by scientists seeing that children of that ‘dejected’ calibre were a given.

I’m also reminded of a child with polio in Goldenbridge who was forced to walk by the nuns, and was beaten because she did not move fast enough to the nun’s liking.