Middlemore: 1949 onwards – family rehabilitation

¬†Child emigration by the Middlemore Homes continued until 1949. By this date government legislation (the Children Act of 1948) and changes in attitudes to child welfare meant emigration was seen as appropriate in only a small number of cases. 

During the period 1949 – 1954 the Middlemore Homes’ only activity was in the care of young children in Crowley House. During this period, the Trust began to investigate a shift in emphasis, away from child migration towards care of children within the family unit. Since 1955, the Middlemore Trust’s activities have been based on the principal of family rehabilitation, providing temporary residence and assistance to mothers and their children, or to whole families.

Crowley House (the former babies’ home) reopened in 1955 as a family rehabilitation centre, with space to accommodate five or six families. The centre aimed to provide a residence, sense of community and education to enable mothers and families to gain confidence and obtain the skills and knowledge to re-establish their independence. Further accommodation was later established at Lee Crescent in Edgbaston (the former Crowley Orphanage for Poor Girls) Speedwell Road in Hay Mills (the Middlemore Centre Rehabilitation Unit) and on Moseley Street. 

The Sir John Middlemore Trust currently operates the Middlemore Family Centre in Bartley Green, providing support to families in crisis.