The Stevenage Homes

Address: 17 The Muntings, 28 The Muntings, 26 Peartree Way, 39 Peartree Way, 66 Hydean Way, 39 Angle Ways.

All these homes are listed on the website as Islington Council children’s homes based in Stevenage, Hertfordshire

KEY: A = 17 The Muntings, B = 28 The Muntings, C = 26 Peartree Way, D = 39 Peartree Way, E = 66 Hydean Way, F = 36 Angle Ways
17 and 28 The Muntings, Leaves Spring, Stevenage, Herts

Open: 1974 – 1981 ?

Number of ISN survivors that lived at 17 and 28 The Muntings children’s homes. 5 girls aged 2 – 15 years. 1 girl moved to The Muntings when Collins Meadow children’s home closed in 1981 and 1 boy (1974)

Numbers of children living at 17 and 28 The Muntings children’s homenamed by ISN survivors: 12 boys and girls. 1 girl is said to have lived at number 28 but no other records state the number of the house the child was in.

Residential staff named by ISN survivors as working at The Muntings

3 women

Life at 17 and 28 The Muntings children’s homes

In 1980 one boy age 13 was refused a place there on the grounds that children from London did not settle in Stevenage and as there were no male staff. It was said by a manager that the children could go to a large leisure centre nearby and that the school was good. One girl who was very young was described as very active and had to be ‘restrained.’ Others describe the racism and extensive emotional abuse with a shocking description by one survivor of being on the manager’s ‘forceful instigation’, ‘tied up and hung bodily (arms and neck) by a tree in the back garden and pelted with Apples for a half an hour as a humiliation for the other residents to witness‘. This memory is as vivid to him today as when he was 7 years old.

She jointly was subject to and witnessed considerable emotional/psychological abuse while resident at 17 The Muntings, Stevenage. In our last few months there (Summer 1976) we were told that we would not be ‘allowed’ to go on a foreign holiday to Austria with the 3 other favourite/favoured children. My sister along with us was also forced to endure eating stale desert and extreme cold weather outdoors without suitable clothing. Appropriate skin and hair care were denied to all of us. We were repeatedly told that the ‘native’ language our father spoke was “not fit for monkeys” and that that was why “English was the first language of he country“‘ (ISN survivor) 

17 – 28 The Muntings, Stevenage: Operating since the early 70’s. Managed by a single unmarried woman . When we arrived there from Widbury, Ware in April 1974 we did so after one or two weekend visits where we were able to get used to the four other children who lived there and the assistant carer.  The manager was very fond of her dog ‘Precious’ who she would give priority in sitting and eating at the table, over me, especially! She was of Irish heritage, from Liverpool originally. Her method of abuse was to demonstrably (in front of) the the other ‘favoured’ children humiliate through verbal abuse and or deprivation of an item or activity, one of the three of us to the point that we came to fear her entrance to or presence within the house. An ‘atmosphere of fear’ was the norm. ‘. (ISN survivor)

26 and 39 Peartree Way, Leaves Spring, Stevenage, Herts

Open: 1979-1985?

Numbers of ISN survivors who lived in Peartree Way children’s homes: 0

Number of children in Peartree Way children’s homes named by ISN survivors: 3: 2 boys age 14 years and 1 girl age 13 years. There are no records of which houses they lived in.

Residential staff named by ISN survivors as working at Peartree Way: 1 woman

Life in Peartree Way children’s homes

A family based quiet placement for children age 11-12 years. In 1983 there was one vacancy (Islington Survivor file entry).

66 Hydean Way, Leaves Spring, Stevenage, Herts

Open: 1969-1983?

Numbers of ISN survivors who lived in Hydean Way children’s home

3: 2 girls and 1 boy all were aged 14 years

Numbers of children named by ISN survivors as living in Hydean Way children’s home: 8

5 girls and 3 boys (4 teenagers and 4 young children)

Residential staff named by ISN survivors as working in Hydean Way children’s home: 8 women and 3 men

Life at 66 Hydean Way children’s home

Two big council houses were joined together with 1 front door in the middle. One girl went to Stevenage College and passed her exams and said the town was safe. One survivor told ISN that at this home she was treated as a human being and not a 2nd class citizen. Social work visits were twice a year or more often if needed. A social worker commented on the married couple in charge as having an easy, relaxed way with teenagers. However in 1971 there was a change of managers and the social worker described them as ‘new and inexperienced – needing support’ and said that the children were having to adjust to a different, more controlled, regime.

In 1983 the home is said to have had a vacancy and was of a long term group but not for adolescents (Islington Survivor file entry)

Herts and Essex Observer, 12.07.1968
36 Angle Ways, Leaves Spring, Stevenage, Herts

No information available on this home

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