Broadstairs, North Foreland Lighthouse c.1965
Memories of Broadstairs, North Foreland Lighthouse c1965
I was at a Home in Broadstairs, I think it could be St Marys (not sure), I was there in 1962 at the age of 12 and stayed for 12 weeks. Do you remember the Minidex that they used to give you after one meal you would line up and it was spooned into your mouth - it was green and was nasty stuff, then they would give you some sweets to hide the taste left in the mouth. I don't remember a lot about the place other than they had a wooden building used for schooling that was just over the lawn. Right in front of the main door of the Home there was the place that they put the fold away beds that we had a nap on in summer. I can't think of any other things about this old place but I do remember the song they used to ...Read full memory
My name was Beverley Anne Davies and I went to Port Regis for about 18 months in 1952. We lived in East Ham E6 and I had asthma. I remember the nuns were strict and at times cruel. I have a memory of one very young girl being sick and the Sister shaking her. I was in a play whilst there, my memory is hazy except I was dressed in a satin dress as an angel. The nuns names I remember are Sr Mary Bonaventure and Sr Raphael Mary. On my arrival I was sent to a lady in a sewing room who was quite kind and was measuring me. I had left my family waiting in a large room by a large fireplace who had agreed to wait for me. On my return they had disappeared and were told it would be 'better' for me not to ...Read full memory
I was at Port Regis in the 50s. I took the lead role in the Thumbelina play. Does anybody remember the crowning of Our Lady? I have a photo of that event. On the other side of the coin I was put on bread and water for three days for not eating macaroni cheese, I also saw a girl being sick because she did not like porridge and the nuns made her eat it. Sister Theresa hated my long hair and tried to make my mother cut it. Sister Mary Audrey however was quite nice and because I could act she used to give me a lot of parts in plays. I was there for a few years and have never forgotten it. Some of the things they did would never be allowed today. If you remember anything I would be pleased to hear from you.......My name was Lorraine Lamb, it is now Lorraine Ilett......
I Patricia Kenny was at Saint Marys in early 1950s with my two sisters Penny and Pamela. I was 2 years old, Pamela 5 and a half and Penny seven years old. I can remember the dormotories, the nuns and kindly nurses. Having our hair washed with this disgusting mushy carbolic soap that came from a large tin, lol, and each being given a ribbon for our hair. I can remember having Marmite on toast followed by tinned spaghetti for tea only if I finished the Marmite which I never did urrr, still hate it today. We were sent there because our mother had TB and we were being isolated. Dad would visit and I remember him carrying me down steps cut through chalk cliff leading from the house grounds to the ...Read full memory
Around 1958-1959 I attended this school due to bad asthma. On the plus side, but probably due to the climate only, my asthma did seem to improve while at this school but otherwise it was one of the most unhappy stages of my life. I was not personally abused but twice saw terrible abuse of others: Frances and Bernadette (I forget their surnames). The former was savagely beaten and the latter was made to eat food which made her sick, including (unbelievably) her own vomit. The education was virtually non-existent and most nuns were cruel. One interesting experience I had there was to see a ghost along with several other girls one evening: a hovering white shrouded figure on ...Read full memory
I am writing this excerpt on behalf of my mother who now lives abroad. 'My name is Elizabeth Ferrier, nee Tyrrell. I was seven years old in 1953. I was sent to Port Regis in late 1953 or early 1954. I was there for 18 months which included part of 1955. I remember Jean Hankinson, Pauline King, Margaret Sedgewick, Dolores Doyle and Doreen McGovern. As far as I know these girls didn't suffer physical abuse with the exception of Jean Hankinson who was in trouble on occasions. During my stay I was often caned severely on both hands at the same time. I had to hold them both out at shoulder height whilst Sister Mary Bonaventure repeatedly thrashed me using a bamboo cane. This took place ...Read full memory
I was at Port Regis in 1950 for 3months and in 1952 for 9months. I saw the coronation there, and went with three other girls from my area. I remember playing with a girl called Teresa, also Sister Mary Magdalane. I was not abused or cruelly treated, probably due to the fact that my dad always left a good tip for the nunnery, I was taken on outings and remember the light house very well which I visited. I was not abused but did witness it with some of the other girls, when two of them ran away, and I remember the person with the skin condition, in fact I slept in a room with her for a couple of weeks when she would be bound from head to foot in bandages, and would have scratched them all off ...Read full memory
As a wee lad of 7 o r8, I had (I think) TB, my illness was called debility. My only memories are, an ambulance at my home in Walsall, my mom/dad waving and the tears, 2 nuns and then a hell of a long scary train ride. Margate was my destination and I was there for about 2 years +, then from there I was sent to the Isle of White, St Catherine's. That school is still there and they had my details and sent them to me but they don't state where I came from. When I got back home I was then sent to Reedswood Open Air School but I can remember those days, even the names of other pupils, and I find that odd. I have been in touch with a fella called Bill (nice fella) who was at Margate and gave me an addy for 'Sister ...Read full memory
I have vivid memories of my time at St. Mary's and they are not particularly nice. I can recall the large dormitory where we had a midday nap after first being put in our pyjamas. It must have been autumn because the leaves had fallen from the trees, which I used to kick whilst taking a walk after our nap. I remember us all being in line like a crocodile and can recall visiting the lighthouse on occasions and climbing up the spiral stairs, on other times we went onto the beach. We had our meals sitting at tables which were in a line and we sat on benches opposite each other. The toilets were at one end of the room behind a wooden partition. I can recall a man collecting me from my home and ...Read full memory
My name is Natasha Buckley, my mother was at Port Regis Convent as a child, as she had severe asthma as a young child. I think she was there from 1954 to 1961. She told me that it was a horrible place and that the irish nuns there were cruel and evil. She hated the place. Her name was Carol Ann Millott.
I was in a children's convalescent home in Broadstairs in (I think) 1961. I was sent on a train from Westminster Children's Hospital and spent some time there. I don't know the name of the place and didn't like it, I was ill whilst there. Would love to share experiences and chat with others. I was aged six at the time and had been in hospital for almost a year. I remember it had a large garden, and a very big dormatory we slept in. I spent most of my time there in bed I think.
I was at Port Regis for approximately 2 years during 1950-1952 from age 9-11. My memories are snapshots only as these memories have been blanked out and have only resurfaced after seeing the comments on this site. Firstly Port Regis was for girls only and was run by Catholic Nuns, St Mary's was a different home run for both boys and girls and was Anglican and not RC. It is true the a lot of the nuns were cruel and I was one of those girls who cried myself to sleep and was beaten and and humiliated for wetting the bed, or some other misdemeanour. I suffered from asthma and used to have to sit up in the organ loft whilst Sister Mary Audrey, who was a also one of our teachers, played the ...Read full memory
I was at Port Regis on two occasions - my sister was there longer than I. I was aware of cruelty but that depends on where you are standing. On many occasions I thought I was in Paradise! Possibly the girl you are thinking of was Kathy (who had very bad eczema), but Sister Mary Nerie was my nightmare. Remember the scarlet fever outbreak as have posted on another site, but none seem to link up. My sister is called Sheila if this rings anybody's bells.
My sister and I were both at Port Regis for Delicate Girls between 1957 -9 approx. Various memories (good & bad). Very hard to find a site that is just for this convent. Seems to split between a Broadstairs site. Various names crop up but none that I recognise.
I was at Port Regis between 1954 and 1956. I was 8 when I got there and left just before my 10th birthday. Was anyone else at Port Regis, Broadstairs when it was a convent for delicate girls? The nuns, thinking about it now, resembled Roman Catholic ladies who were probably forced in many cases to be nuns. This was a great honour during that time for a Catholic daughter to become a Roman Catholic nun. I was NOT a Roman Catholic at all. Neither was my family, but as we children were forced to pray to the rosary several times a day. I assume it was a Catholic convent, also the Virgin Mary was the main issue in the chapel. The treatment there was out of this world CRUEL ...Read full memory
I remember Port Regis very well, I stayed there as a child. It was a convalescent home then for girls. The nuns used to take us down to the beach every Wednesday afternoon - Kingsgate beach that is. Though it is 40-some odd years ago I still remember it as if it was yesterday. I remember my very best friend there, her name was Frances. There also were the sisters Diane and Sheila, and I also remember all the nuns' names. It was a special time in my life. Until 1966 we went to Broadstairs every year for our holidays, parking on the jetty and going to Viking Bay, the arcade that was there, and the coffee shop that one of your readers said now is a pizza parlour. I wish I could revisit those days but I can't, plus I now live in Florida, but I have my memories. Ann Venters.
I had a couple of holidays at Broadstairs, staying at the Convent at Port Regis. I attended St Philomena's in Carshalton Surrey and I think they owned the Convent at Port Regis. I can remember Broadstairs and going to Margate. I now live in Sydney, Australia but will be in England in September and I hope to get down to Kent (amid a very busy itinerary) and relive those memories. Bette Schoots (nee Miller).
My 4th Gt grandfather was Michael Breckinridge--he died in a storm at sea c 1808. He and his son, Michael (married to Elizabeth Shrewsbury---her father and husband both shipwrights), were both Chief, Cinque Ports. Some of the (then) cousins, surname Hiller, were born IN the North Foreland Light. My 3rd Gt. grandfather, Edward William Breckinridge, who married Mary Ann Adkins of Ramsgate, Kent, sailed to America in c1833, my 2nd Gt. grandfather Henry Breckinridge, in their arms. Later, Mary Ann's sister, Martha, left there--joined them in the US---living with Henry and Mary Ann until she died. Henry's sisters (born in the US) and his nieces, made trips back---hopefully I will make the trip one ...Read full memory