Tuesday, 23 December 2014

Christmas 1914

It’s been a busy few weeks here at the Together Trust. As Christmas 2014 is fast approaching however, it seemed a good time to turn back the clock 100 years and see how our boys were faring in France and Belgium as World War One raged on.

Our Boys

Thursday, 20 November 2014

Belmont House

We’re returning to Belmont House today to take a closer look at the building we owned for sixty years of our existence between 1920 and 1981. Today the building resides as a care home for the elderly. 

Belmont House today

Remembrance Day

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them
For the Fallen by Laurence Binyon

One of our 400 poppies

Tuesday, 4 November 2014

Everyone Remembered

On Monday 3rd November young people from the Together Trust’s education services all came together to lay poppies in memory of the 400 men associated with the charity, who had fought in World War One. 

Part of the poppy display at Together Trust Centre, Cheadle

Friday, 24 October 2014

The Second Annual Meeting

On 13 January 1872, the Boys’ Refuge and Industrial Home, as we were then known, held their second annual meeting. This was reported in the Manchester Weekly Times and even in those early days many of Manchester’s elite turned out for the meeting, including the Bishop of Manchester, M.P. Mr. Oliver Heywood, John Rylands and Thomas Wright. 

On Admittance
Within two years the venture had been so successful that the charity had managed to move away from its initial premises on Quay Street, in the notorious district of Deansgate, to Francis Street, Strangeways. Four three storey houses and a yard were purchased and converted into one building. The report also referred to a story that would eventually lead to the opening of a new building on Major Street in 1884, the 24 hour shelter.

In the winter months of 1871 three boys applied at the Refuge looking for shelter. As the home was already full, they had to be turned away. Seeking warmth and shelter and being unable to afford three pence to stay in a lodging house for the night they had wandered up to the brickfields of Cheetham. A few days later a newspaper reported on the demise of a young boy who had been burned to death at one of the brick kilns in the neighbourhood. This boy was one of the three who had, had to be turned away much to the consternation of the committee. 

Children’s Shelter, Major Street
It was this incident that convinced the charity that they needed another building in which to receive any child in need of help, whatever the hour. The result was the Children’s Shelter at 14 Major Street. Open all day and all night children in need of shelter could be brought and receive food and a bed for the night, whilst their individual circumstances were investigated. It ensured that no child requesting aid would ever be turned away again.

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

'Carrying on for the Children' - Friday 7 November

Over the last few months the Together Trust has been blogging about the charity during World War One. On Friday 7th November at 2:00pm some of these stories will be told at Manchester’s Central Library as part of its series of Manchester Remembers, WW1 events that runs from 1st – 11th November.

“Carrying on for the children” – The Boys’ and Girls’ Refuges in World War One

By 1914 the Manchester and Salford Boys’ and Girls’ Refuges and Homes was an established children’s charity and well known within the local community. The outbreak of the First World War however, saw the charity buffeted on many sides. Fighting for donations against the various War funds that were set up, it saw its financial income cut drastically; an increased number of children needing aid and those boys previously cared for head across the seas, some never to return. Despite heavy debt it spent the next four years fighting to continue to provide for those children in Manchester left desolate by the War. It came out in 1918, scarred but alive. This is the story of the survival of one of Manchester’s biggest children’s charities during World War One.

We hope you may be able to join us on the 7th to hear about the Manchester and Salford Refuges. For more details please contact us.

Thursday, 9 October 2014

Digitising at York

We had a little trip to York last week. Lovely though the city is however, our adventure did not take in the sights of the Cathedral, a trip through the Yorvik Centre or a walk around the city walls. Instead it took us to York University, and more specifically to the Borthwick Archives, in order to deposit a number of our precious books.

One of the History Books ready for digitisation

Tuesday, 30 September 2014

‘On their own: Britain's child migrants’

Back in 2010 the Together Trust was contacted by the Merseyside Maritime Museum in Liverpool. Their query was for images and information about the charity and its involvement in child emigration for a new project between the museum and the Australian National Maritime Museum. The result was a website and exhibition, bringing to life the stories of those sent out to Canada and Australia during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. After its recent tour of Australia the exhibition, ‘On their own: Britain's child migrants’ is now coming to Liverpool on the 17th October to engage the British public with this poignant part of English history.

Emigration party outside Manchester Town Hall, 1897

Thursday, 25 September 2014

Emigration during WW1

The First World War ended many established services that had been set up by the Manchester and Salford Boys’ and Girls’ Refuges and Homes. Activities such as the five workshops were closed naturally as the apprentices of age went off to war. Other homes were shut down in an attempt to save money. The final closure saw the halt of the emigration service. 

Emigration Party outside the Town Hall

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

The adopted son - Robert Shaw

Out of all of the individuals associated with the Manchester and Salford Boys’ and Girls’ Refuges and Homes there is one name that continues to frustrate me. This gentleman has a continued presence around the illustrious name of the charity and yet we know very little about him. That person is Robert Shaw, only son of our founder Leonard Shaw and his wife Annie

Tuesday, 9 September 2014

Scouting for Boys

In the Refuge Conference Hall, Strangeways, on March 7th 1915, 24 youths of the Central Refuge made the Scout three-fold promise:- 
To be loyal to God and the King, 
To help other people at all times,
To obey the Scout Law
And so formed the 218th Manchester Troup of the Baden Powell Scouts.

Monday, 1 September 2014

Tightening the belt

The death of Thomas Johnson in 1915 brings us neatly this week to the financial effects of the 'Great War' on the Refuge during this time. As many stories focus on the individual sacrifices made, it is as important to understand the work that continued at home. It was a fine line between success and defeat for the charity as the inevitable effects of the War took hold. Four years of closures, reduced income and increased admissions saw the charity in its worst financial position since its beginnings.

'In the Refuge'

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

The 'Angel' of the Meadow

We’ve provided various stories in the last few weeks about some of our fallen heroes in World War One. This week we’re turning away from the battlefields of France and Flanders, back to the city of Manchester to honour the passing of a highly influential individual, who had many dealings with the Refuges over the years, Thomas (Tommy) Johnson.

Thomas (Tommy) Johnson

Monday, 11 August 2014

The role of Canada in the War

Last week’s post concentrated on Harold, a boy brought up from a young age in the care of the Manchester Refuges and worked as a draper in Liverpool. When he enlisted at the beginning of the Great War he fought within the Lancashire Fusilliers regiment, for the country in which he had been born and raised. Many of the other boys on our honours list did the same thing. Some however fought despite having been out of the country for many years. 

Postcard - Canadian Royal Field Artillery

Monday, 4 August 2014

England enter the War

One hundred years ago today on the 4th August 1914, England declared war on Germany, subsequently becoming a major player in what became known as World War One. Over 400 men associated with the Manchester and Salford Boys’ and Girls’ Refuges and Homes fought in the War. The charity has now produced a roll of honour on its website to commemorate these men. 

Together Trust Roll of Honour, 1914-1918

Monday, 28 July 2014

Our ‘boys’ remembered

“No record of the work of an English philanthropic public institution having to do with the care of poor children for the year 1914 can be written without the reference to the national crisis created by the terrible European war declared in the early days of August. Few will forget the quick transition in those mid-summer days from a nation absorbed in peaceful pursuits to one stunned at first and then springing to arms in the cause of righteousness”. Taken from the Children’s Haven, 1915.

Refuge Volunteers, 1917

Friday, 18 July 2014

Medical Reminiscences

It’s sometimes easy to forget the work that went on behind the scenes for the smooth running of the Refuge. Many people offered their professional skills for free or at a reduced rate to help the charity provide for the children within their care.

Annual Report 1900

Tuesday, 8 July 2014

The boys, the monk bench and the wardrobe

It is said with fashion that when it goes out of style the look will invariably come back into use at a later date. This idea is not only restricted to fashion. Many things come in and out of popularity largely due to the successfulness of advertising at the time. 

When the Boys’ and Girls’ Refuges and Homes began in 1870, despite the recognition and advantages the charity saw in the education of children, most were taught skills or a trade in order to be able to look after themselves and their future families. We’ve spoken before about apprenticeships within the blog but we’ve not shown our readers the type of work actually produced. Let’s take the joinery department as an impressive example. 

Wardrobe made in joinery department

Monday, 30 June 2014

Young Men's Institute

I came across this picture in the archive the other day. 

Young Men’s Institute football team, 1917
It shows the Young Men’s Institute football squad from 1917 posing for a team photograph. It seems a relevant topic to talk about seen as we’re currently in the middle of the 2014 world cup. The Young Men’s Institute at this time catered for boys of working age who had no permanent residence to go to. It housed 35 young men and was largely made up by those who in early life had passed through the Refuge. Each youth had full board, a separate cubicle, use of a comfortable sitting room, news room, games room, bathroom and gymnasium at a cost of 10 shillings per week.

Wednesday, 18 June 2014

Aviation and a artificial limb

The delight in family history enquiries, apart from providing researchers with information about their ancestors, is the new wealth of information it can provide us about the charity and social work through the years. This can range from services we provided that were previously unknown, to the various people and companies who we were associated with. An enquiry the other day linked the charity in a roundabout way to the world of aviation

Bethesda Home, George Street, 1930s

Tuesday, 10 June 2014

Indenture of Apprenticeship

We’ve spoken before about the five different workshops located in the Central Refuge on Francis Street. These workshops; printing, shoemaking, tailoring, joinery and firewood were created to give the boys a skill and consequently a career for life. Documents of indenture were signed by the boys to a particular trade providing a contract between the apprentice and the Refuge. 

Indenture of Apprenticeship

Wednesday, 4 June 2014

The work of Walter Thurlow Browne

We all know the story by now – on the 4th January 1870 two businessmen, Leonard Shaw and Richard Taylor opened a ‘Night Refuge for Homeless Boys’ at 16 Quay Street, Manchester. This provided primitive accommodation for up to 40 boys as well as work within messenger and shoeblack brigades set up by the charity. Shaw and Taylor excelled at setting up the home and ensuring sponsors and assistance from members of the community. What they did not have experience in however, was caring for the boys themselves. This problem was solved by the appointment of a couple from London, Walter Thurlow Browne and his wife Emma. They became the first Master and Matron of the Quay Street home providing care and support to the boys.

Walter T Browne on the back row 

Wednesday, 28 May 2014

Behind the Scenes at the Boys' and Girls' Refuges

The Together Trust has various film reels from its earlier days depicting some of our former services. These have been converted into DVD clips by the North West Film Archive to allow the films to still be seen today. It gives a different insight into how the charity advertised itself as well as revealing what the services would have looked like.

Title Slide

Wednesday, 14 May 2014

Around Manchester today

We’ve mentioned before in this blog about the lack of buildings which now remain in the city centre relating to the Manchester and Salford Boys’ and Girl’s Refuges and Homes. As we stated last week the charity by the 1900’s had homes spread across Manchester and Salford with thousands of children using our services every year. In 1900 the charity was well and truly established within the community. Today however, very little remains to advertise this. 

Old advertising leaflet on display in Manchester
A chance visit to a watering hole in Manchester however, revealed photographs of the charity are still displayed around the city. The image above was in pride of place on a wall surrounded by other iconic pictures of Manchester. As it was originally an advert for the Summer Camp it is freely in the public domain. The people who spotted and decided to display this image in the pub may not know the context of the image but it is comforting to know that not all traces of the charity has disappeared from the city centre!     

Wednesday, 7 May 2014

Tuesday, 29 April 2014

Frank Brookhouse Dunkerley

I thought we’d have a look today at the work of the Manchester Architect, F. B. Dunkerley and the work he did for the Manchester and Salford Refuges and Homes.

Children’s Shelter, Chatham Street, 1910

Thursday, 17 April 2014

Leonard Shaw and Dr. Barnardo

The 19th century was notable for the men and women who devoted themselves to the service of destitute children. Lord Shaftesbury of London, Miss Annie Macpherson of Stratford, Thomas John Barnardo, Leonard K. Shaw, William Quarrier of Glasgow,and Edward Rudolf of the Children’s Society formed a group of philanthropists which strove to better living conditions for children.

Leonard Shaw

Friday, 4 April 2014

After the festival

Last Saturday the Together Trust attended the Manchester Histories Festival at the Town Hall. Here museums, galleries, academics, archives, local and family history societies, cultural organisations and community groups from across Greater Manchester came together to deliver activities, events and displays about the history of the city. 

Manchester Histories Festival at Manchester Town Hall

Monday, 24 March 2014

Manchester Histories Festival 2014

“Manchester Histories Festival is for people who like history and people who think they don’t.” - Claire Turner, Festival Director

Saturday 29th March sees the celebration day of another successful Manchester Histories Festival (MHF). Once again the Together Trust will be joining with 90 other organisations at the Town Hall to display the history of Manchester.

Friday, 14 March 2014

Transforming Manchester Central Library

‘Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom, and with all thy getting get understanding’. Proverbs 4:7

For the last four months we have had to suspend our genealogy service to the public. As regular readers of this blog will know we have a whole wealth of information on the young people who came under the care of the Together Trust. Our earlier material (that is no longer under the constrictions of the Data Protection Act) is available to family historians to construct the lives of their ancestors. In the next few weeks this research service will be available again.

Construction of Manchester Central Library, early 1930’s*

Thursday, 6 March 2014

St. Ann's Ragged School

“Such was the acorn from which sprang the magnificent tree of philanthropic growth, which now casts the branching shadows of its saving agencies far and wide over this great city wherever sorrowful outcasts are to be found.” Manchester Courier, 28 June 1902

I’m veering off topic a little today and looking into a building connected with the Manchester and Salford Boys’ and Girls’ Refuges and Homes, but not one under its jurisdiction. In fact it’s a very important little building that lies just off the main road off Deansgate on Queen’s Street. It catered for ragged children in the area in the nineteenth century, providing free education and often their main meal for the day. 

Location of Queen Street Ragged School

Thursday, 27 February 2014

Tossing the pancake

It’s nearly Shrove Tuesday! I was reminded by the appearance of a pancake maker at the Together Trust this week, promising to make perfect pancakes quickly with little mess. Of course as a child the best thing about Pancake Day (aside from the eating) was the tossing, the catching or the scraping of the now inedible pancake off the kitchen floor.  

Diary entry for 1 March 1870 – Shrove Tuesday

Friday, 14 February 2014

Love Letters

On letters -

“This is just me, me the way I write, the way my writing is, the way I want to be to you, giving myself to you across a distance, not keeping or retaining any part of it for myself, giving this piece of myself totally, and you can tear me up or throw me out, or keep me, and read me today, tomorrow, any time you want until you die.” 

- Love Letters, A. R. Gurney

Emigration scrap books

Thursday, 6 February 2014

The flour connection

We are looking into the work of another former Trustee this week – Sir Robert McDougall. The surname may be familiar to some, McDougall flour has long been a well established name within baking circles. 

Sir Robert McDougall

Thursday, 23 January 2014

The charity on a postcard

Within the Together Trust’s photograph collection is a small section from the 1920s and 1930s, which are made up of postcards of the various services provided by the charity. 

‘The Children’s Garden Village “Belmont”, Cheadle, Cheshire’

Wednesday, 15 January 2014

Off to find the South African spiny cucumber

Between the years 2003 – 2010 the Together Trust ran a successful adoption service alongside its fostering work. 

Together Trust Adoption Leaflet

Friday, 3 January 2014

The Together Trust and the Doctor

Regular readers to this blog will know we’re about to hit a special day in the Together Trust calendar once again. On Saturday 4th January our charity sees its 144th birthday and once again we look back with pride over our illustrious past.

Refuge Band, 1900