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Ivybank Childrens Home - a Memory of Farncombe.

I thought I would leave a message here also, I was a child at Ivybank Children's Home in Nightingale Lane. Sadly though I don't think it is there any longer. We were an all-girls children's home, with a range of ages from 5 years to 16 years. The home was run by Auntie Bonnie. Ivybank had a massive green front door, and lots of grounds, which ran down literally to the fence by the railway line into Godalming. I remember St. Johns School which I attended, and also the church. Does anyone here remember the Chocolate Box Sweet Shop, or the steam trains, and standing on the iron bridge in Farncombe and holding your breath until the train had passed under...?

I would love to find someone with a photograph of Ivybank.

A memory shared by Dorothy Laker on Jun 23rd, 2009. Send Dorothy Laker a message

 Comments & Feedback

Wed Nov 11th 2015, at 11:16 am
tag1807 commented:
Hi Dottie,

Thanks for the quick response and the fascinating information - I've sent a reply to your private message.

All the best,

Wed Nov 11th 2015, at 9:10 am
Dorothy Laker commented:
Hi there thank you for posting here lovely to read your comments..I have an ariel photograph of Ivybank not to clear, given to me by a researcher of Ivybank in March 2010. Would to share it with you..also have some information as it was known as Frances Villa as below will cut and paste.
Ivybank Childrens Home formerly Francis Villa

29 Apr
Nightingale Lane, Nr Farncombe, Godalming, SurreyResidence of Captain John Mush 17th Regiment of The Foot Deceased 27th January 1873 late of Francis Villa. John Mush died at only 30 Years old. In Farncombe January 1873. John was buried at Nightingale Cemetery Godalming. On the 1st February 1873

Nightingale Cemetery Burial of John Mush

1 Feb
Nightingale Cemetery, Godalming, SurreyPlot 2125 Service Performed by Reverend W.D. Long - John Mush was born about 1843 in Yorkshire. I have found John on the 1871 Census residing in Farnham listed as an Officer


Age: 9
IvyBank Farncombe Godalming SurreyBuilt circa 1860's as a private house and was called "Francis Villa" until around 1907 when it changed to "Ivybank", Around 1934 it was acquired by the Surrey County Council. Closed around late 1970's and was demolished around 1984

dottie nee laker
Tue Nov 10th 2015, at 12:10 pm
tag1807 commented:

I realise I'm a little behind in reponding to this memory but I just thought I should mention that the childrens home at Ivybank was demolished in the mid-1980s and a small housing development established in its place.

I have lived in one of the houses there for the last 15 years and have spoken to a few local people who remember the home.

Most of the people I've spoken to locally remember the place as somewhat austere and this seems to be borne out by another comment regarding Ivybank on this website.

I am keen to learn more about the home and life therein and would also be especially interested if anyone had any photos taken before redevelopment. Part of the reason for visiting the Francis Frith website was to try and unearth any pictures but whilst there are some excellent shots of Farncombe and Godalming none seem to exist of Ivybank.

I've enquired of the local photographic society but unfortunately drew a blank there too - in fact, I believe it was they who suggested this site..

Anyway, I hope that those who may have once lived at Ivybank in its former incarnation will be glad to learn that it is now/still(?) a happy & friendly place to live.

As regards the Chocolate Box - the sign is still there on the wall by the station but sadly, the shop itself is now a house.

Likewise, the iron bridge over the railway is still very much there but you no longer need to hold your breath anymore as the trains are all electric these days..

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