Foxcroft Children's Home Remembered

Betty Raines looked after children for 20 years
By Sylvia Kent

The early days of the home
The home's later years

Many people remember coming to live in Billericay at Foxcroft, a beautiful building at 100 High Street.

“The moment I came to Foxcroft and met the children, I knew I would be happy in Billericay,” recalled Betty Raines.  Betty answered an advertisement to work at the Children’s Home at 100 High Street, known as Foxcroft.  In 1955, the building looked a little different from that of today – no Virginia Creeper – just neat box hedges and a couple of rose bushes.

Foxcroft is still a beautiful house, built around 1740.  It was first used as a private home and then from 1860 it was the Billericay Grammar School for about three years.  Prior to this the Reverend Darby lived here, bringing up his large family and ministering at St Mary Magdalen on Sundays.

In 1932 Essex County Council purchased the building for use as a children’s home and it was here that Betty Raines looked after the children who came to live there. 

She said: “It was the custom then to call us Auntie and we tried to create a warm family atmosphere.  The children came to us not because they were orphans, but because of family problems.  They often settled down remarkably quickly and we tried to give them a steady family background.  We took the little ones to school and met them at the gates at home time.  They were all encouraged to join Cubs, Brownies and Guides and to other young people clubs that were going on in Billericay.  We also took them to St Mary’s Church further along the High Street.”

During the early 1970s, another children’s home was built at Patricia Gardens at South Green near Billericay.  Betty moved from Foxcroft after 20 years’ service.  She eventually retired from working with children to working with older people at the Billericay Day Centre and certainly made a lot of friends there, too.

Numerous people from around the world remember their time at Foxcroft (and Betty)with warm affection.


Editors Note: Do you recognize anyone in the photos and do you have any recollections of Foxcroft or the home in Patricia Gardens? We would love to hear from you.

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  • Me and my 2 sisters went to Foxcroft from 1968 for about 3 years, at the time there was only one other girl there who I think left to become a nurse. Our names where Donna, Denise and Debbie Hawkins. I have read a couple of comments that mention us. I remember Auntie Carol who I didn’t like much as she always put my hair up to tight. I remember having to do the dishes after meals, being taken to Christmas parties, the circus and on holiday. One of the aunts and uncles who where in charge took us to Colchester to the zoo and to visit one of their parents. I now live near the zoo. One of the helpers crocheted me a poncho which I still have. I also remember all the animals we had especially a King Charles spaniel called Mo. I would like to hear from anyone who remembers us.

    By Donna Hawkins (10/11/2020)
  • This building is still standing and very much in use. It is now occupied by a beauty salon, hairdressers and offices. The garden has now gone and is partly used for parking for the building, the delivery bay for the Waitrose store nearby ad part of the store car park.

    By Editor (24/07/2020)
  • My father Michael lived at Foxcroft in the years just after WW2. Is the building still standing and available to enter? I’d be incredibly interested to explore it and the grounds, and take some photos for a photography assignment I’m trying to do about my father.

    By Sean Marjason (23/07/2020)
  • When I lived there all the eldest children had chores to do. Washing up, drying up, laying the tables for breakfast, shoe cleaning etc. My chore was filling and fetching 10 scuttles of coke in for the boiler. Please note these were NOT punishments. They helped us understand about life and that you had to work and help each other to get by. I learnt and did a lot of maturing there, I would not change a thing about my time there. I hope someone who was there gets in touch and then we can reminisce.

    By Robert J Shovlar (16/03/2020)
  • I have just remembered that Lonnie Donegan also paid us a visit during Christmas 1960 as well as the Airmen from the American airbase. That summer all the children travelled to West Mersey for a weeks holiday. We stayed in army barracks which were very basic.

    By Jean Smith (nee Blake) (15/03/2020)
  • I still remember a lot of things about Foxcroft. I did not live there but stayed as a guest in the summer of 1962. I was eleven years old and learnt my first bit of English from the children. Still remember one day with little Beverly who wanted me to push her in the little car. I hadn’t the slightest idea what she meant until she showed me. But my English very soon got better. Also remember the strawberries one day. If I liked whipped cream on them. It was kind of a shock as there was no suger in the cream. In my country we always put sugar to it. I remember many of the children from those days and they thought I had “something” with Elaine Cunningham, who was the oldest of the children then. She is just two weeks younger than me, being from Sept. 5th and I am from Aug. 23rd.
    Aunty Jeanne was my real aunt as she was the eldest sister of my father, she already died in 1997 being 76. I would be very pleased to get in contact with some who still know me: I am Bart from the Netherlands. I also was in Patricia Gdns. in 1967 and 1975. Had a grest time and am still very thankful for being your guest. I leave my email so anyone can answer, if they like
    Would be very nice to hear from Elaine and Dennis Wilkinson. I used to write with his mom for a while. In 1967 I met Mark again, don’t know his surname.

    By B. Storm (11/03/2020)
  • Jeanne Storm was one of the leading staff members in Foxcroft and moved with the children to Patricia Gdns. She was my aunt, died in 1997. I was a guest at Foxcroft in the summer of 1962. Then I was there for two weeks and remember it all very well. It was there I learnt my first bit of the English language. I also remember many of the children, like there was a boy called Dennis Wilkinson, three sisters Cunningham (Elaine, Madeline and I do not remember the third name), Norman Deigan etc. Would like to hear from some of them who remember me: Bart Storm. I am almost 70 now, so quite “old.”

    By Bart Storm (10/03/2020)
  • I had a stay at Foxcroft in 1960/1 with Miss Nissen who told me head up, stomach in, chest out. I was 12 at the time, I have always remembered that for some reason. I remember Carol Chittock and have a photo of brother and sister Rosanna and David and another boy named Guy. Cannot remember their surnames but Rosanna was about 10, her brother was younger and Guy looks about 5-6. There was also a Chris that used to visit at weekends who I think may have been about 18 at the time but cannot be sure of that. I also remember the Christmas when the Americans came, that was probably 1960. Someone pulled my stool away and I fell onto the floor, fortunately I wasn’t badly damaged. We went to a pantomime that year, I think in Southend. I joined the guides and remember blackberry picking in the woods but I think they have been built on since.
    My mother visited me on some Saturdays when she was well enough and we would sometimes go to the tea shop in the High Street or she would fall asleep in the back garden!
    On the whole I did enjoy my stay at Foxcroft.

    By Jean Blake (09/03/2020)
  • I enjoyed living here in the late 1960’s. I remember me and Peter Smith climbing to the top of the tallest tree which was beside the sandpit at the far end of the garden. If anyone who knows Peter ask him to see if he remembers this. Too old to do it now but find memories from my childhood. If anybody wants to email me at

    By Robert J Shovlar (19/02/2020)
  • I lived in Foxcroft from January 1966 until December 1969. I’m in the 1968 photo of us at Newlands in the lake district. I’m the one with my hands clasped together behind Uncle Harold. I can remember everyone’s name in the photo. I have listed them below.
    Back row; Alan Gunn, Paul Smith, Paul French, Peter Smith, Joey Smith, Robin James.
    Middle row; Faith Berry, Margaret Wright, “Auntie” Vera Cooper, “Uncle” Harold Cooper, “Auntie” Betty Raines, Gail Pratt, Leslie Berry (Faith’s sister).
    Front row; Patrick Sharkey, Geoffrey Imms, Eric Styles, Robert Cooper (the son of the Coopers).
    We all had some fun times on this holiday in the lake district. The Smith brothers had an elder brother John And a sister Ann who was there for a short while.
    I have plenty of good memories about Foxcroft and yes a couple of bad ones. I remember the riots between the skinheads and greasers. I use to stay some weekends in 1970 as I played in goal for Billericay’s under 18 football team and was pleased to be allowed to stay there. I now live in Wales.

    By Robert J Shovlar (18/02/2020)
  • Does anyone remember a Susan Tucker? She’s my mum and was at Foxcroft from the age of 8 so would of been about 1952/53 …

    By Samantha Hall (15/11/2019)
  • I lived in Foxcroft from about 1949 till around 1955. There are 6 children I remember: Terry Hunt, Paul and Gerald Millard, Pauly Johnson, Carol Chitock , Wendy Cumbers, sisters Sylvia and Marjorie Edwards, Mrs. Stathem, Aunty Betty, and the sewing ladies, Mrs. Coggins and Mrs. Coggersal; Miss Nissem was in charge. Every morning she would call out, “cup of tea” and someone would make it and bring it to her. She smoked Churchmans cigarettes. If you wet the bed you had to go into the bathroom and wash your sheets before you had breakfast. On our way to the primary school, which was just past archer memorial hall, was a huge green gas holder which we believed to be a German bomb and we would run like hell. The school had outside toilets and we had a bottle of milk at our desk. If you were naughty you had to stand outside by the coke heap and a local bobby would walk up and tell you off, then chat up the young ladies working there. During the school holidays we would ambush the dustman with home made bows and arrows as they walked up to pick up the bins” whoa”. The gardener was Mr. Hollaway, who had a limp and two daughters. We would go to the local picture house and whatever type of film we saw was our weeks play theme. My pocket money was 1 shilling and 3 pence, given on a Saturday morning. We had a huge garden with a swing set and a small pond. I loved it at Foxcroft. I was then sent to the Royal Wanstead school which I hated. But I will always remember the good times at Foxcroft. And also, the Americans that came to see us during Christmas with presents. I am now 74 and live in Florida. It would be lovely to hear from any of the old gang.

    By William Holland(Billy) (14/12/2018)
  • My Dad, William Holland (Billy), was in Foxcroft, he’s 72 now, and has many happy memories of being there before passing his eleven plus and moving to Royal Wanstead where he was not so happy. I would love to see some photos if there are any?

    By Charlotte Clarke (08/12/2018)
  • I had a friend Suzanne Goldberg who lived at Foxcroft and went to the Billericay School and attended my class. This would have been in the 1950/60s. The last time I met her she said she had failed her exams through nerves, although to me she was a very bright girl. Unfortunately we lost touch – there were no mobile phones or social media in those days! I recall how we enjoyed playing in the gardens of Foxcroft and have really fond memories, especially on Guy Faulks with the fireworks. I would love to meet her again to share how both our lives have turned out. I also recall Auntie Betty!

    By Joyce Reynolds (23/08/2018)
  • I believe I was in one of the two homes in the early 1960’s but not sure when and how long for.

    I would love to know how to access the records so I can fill in the gaps.

    By David Russell (02/08/2018)
  • Hi Everyone,

    1963 to 1967
    I didn’t live in Foxcroft, I lived at 5 Fairview on the out road to Southend, near the Lockers.
    I did have friends at Foxcroft though, Fennick and his younger brother Joseph Hunnam.
    Spent some time after school and at weekends with them at Foxcroft and I remember the Aunties Betty and Jan.
    Something that sticks in my mind was: – You could get through to Chapel Street from the rear of the property’s large garden and woodland so many a time we went through to the road to watch the traffic. On this particular time we saw a car hit a pigeon so, we picked it up took it back to the house, put it in a box with grass, fed and watered it to keep it alive.
    After a couple of days the Pigeon recovered and was ready to go so, we took it to the bottom of the rear garden, I lifted it from the box and (as seen done on TV) threw it into the air. Unfortunately I must have thrown it too hard as it dropped to the ground with its neck snapped.
    It’s surprising what sticks in your mind.

    By Robert Grieve (24/07/2018)
  • Ronnie Bush, Deborah Hicks and Lynne Riches please get in touch. Email stating that they may pass on your details to me. It’s Andy Smith, the youngest Smith brother in Foxcroft. My brothers, John, Peter, Paul and Joe in that order are all still with us. I also remember Donna, Denise and Deborah. Alternatively find me on Facebook – Andrew Smith, Morcambe, Lancs.

    By Andrew smith (22/04/2018)
  • I Lived at Foxcroft in the 50s I must of been the black girl with short curly hair. I was the only black girl there at the time. I ended up being fostered by a Mr & Mrs Gladden. I was cruely treated there for a few years & eventually was transferred to another home in Chelmsford essex. My name then was Susan Smith.

    By Susan Shaw (16/02/2018)
  • My home was at Foxcroft in the early 70’s. I also remember the Smith bothers, I was a close friend of Andy. Good memories, some not so good, but there were far worse places, as I was soon to learn.

    By Ronnie Bush (09/12/2017)
  • No way Helen! 

    I will let them all know! 

    By Jodie smith (29/10/2017)
  • Hi Jodie Smith, I remember all the smith children at Foxcroft, I stayed there often. My best friend lived there and I was allowed to stay there sometimes and I spent a lot of my teenage years there. I remember John was tall and slim, his brother small and dark haired, their sister was about my age and had long hair. I often think about my friends there. There was a large shed in the garden that we all used to go in to listen to music and some had a crafty puff. This was between 1966 and 1970

    By Helen Constantinou (01/10/2017)
  • Does anyone remember my nan Valerie Wallis and Edgar (Eddie) Wallis who attended Hillcrest Lodge, Walton on Naze 1970s onwards.

    By Kelly (20/06/2017)
  • I was in Foxcroft in the 1970s and I remember the Smith Brothers very well. Paul was about my age and Andrew and Joseph were younger. Auntie Rose and Uncle Bert Wood were there when I went and were wonderful people. There were also three sisters, Debbie, Donna and Denise – I remember Donna being off school one day and we had a delivery of meat from the butchers. The sausages came in a long string and auntie Rose and Uncle Bert used them as a skipping rope for Donna to skip!!  Would not be allowed now but it was fun in those days. I now live in Milton Keynes.

    By Lynne Riches (09/12/2016)
  • I was in Foxcroft with my two brothers, Kenny & Jeffrey Berner, from about 1960 to 1966. If anyone remembers us please get in touch.

    By Stephen Berner (25/11/2016)
  • Me and my twin sister was at 12 Patricia Gardens between the mid to late 70’s and remember Aunt Betty very well, she was a lovely lady. Our surname was Taylor at the time.

    By Sharon Ambrose (04/08/2016)
  • My mum Shirley Reeves was in Foxcroft in 1944, she still as a letter from Miss Nisome. I have taken mum back there and have been trying to get her in there to look at her room. I ain’t giving up hope they find it in their heart to let her as she is 78 now and has cancer. She always talks about her time spent in there.

    By sarah sutton (27/06/2016)
  • Hiya Colin anytime email me  James n myself still haven’t had that trip to Tendring, will do soon though.

    By Maureen Naylor (29/04/2016)
  • Hi Maureen

    Sorry for late reply but I checked site before and missed your reply.

    I cannot e-mail you as I don’t have address (hidden).

    I was 5 years old in summer 1953 so I think we would have been in the same class at school. People remember different things but some time a reminder brings this out. Lady teacher, school milk warmed up by the heater in the winter. She would tell stories using a home made box scrolling pictures across with a light behind.

    The shop near the church had a penny wriggles chewing gum machine outside and if the arrow was pointing towards you then you got two for a penny. There was a black smith forge opposite the church.  

    I think I went to Tendring in 1953 and remember American airmen coming one Xmas with bags of toys. Also an Xmas Party on an American ship in Hawich harbour.

    I also remember a huge Easer egg in a waste paper basket, I think was sent by Woolworths, as I saw one on display in the shop. Remember Gumption cleaning cream and Gibbs tooth cleaning  blocks in a tin, blocks of white soap for washing and red (carbolic) for floors. It was against the Children’s Act to split up children but no one cared about that. Moth balls.

    Sorry again with late answer.

    By Colin Hughes (20/11/2015)
  • Having lived in Billericay from 1932  on and off until 1973 I am always interested in stories of the place.

    By Alfred Barnett (16/11/2015)
  • Hiya Colin, wow you remember more than me. James and I will have a drive down to the area soon, I’m in Rayleigh now. There were only 2 black children in the home; I had some contact with the boy now a successful man with 2 lovely daughters.  I went there in 1953 aged 5, James was already there with my other older brother. I got fostered out at 7ish in Chelmsford but I didn’t settle as I missed my brothers. At nearly 9 I went home to my Mum and Dad and gradually my brothers came home too for weekends as James went to Foxcroft after I was fostered. I wish there were photos from those days. James knew a Carol Chitock at Foxcroft, maybe her brother was Bobby? I remember the back garden, the swing and running around trying to chase James and his friends and he remembers some things. He is a year older so he would have been 6. Anyway we all survived and had a good life. I have a beautiful family plus have been married for 49 years to the same man!!!  Ha ha lucky man… anytime just mail me Colin.

    By Maureen Naylor (07/10/2015)
  • Hi Maureen, you are the first person I have found from Tendring homes, I am not very good with names but I remember a Bobby Chitup & Mrs Buckles a local white haired lady that helped out in the girls house.

    One of the aunties was called Doris Howard, could have been later. There was me, my twin sister Gillian and my elder brother called John who got fostered not long after, then my sister got fostered. There was chicken near the girls home and I got burnt from a bomb fire on my neck when another child stuck a burning stick on my neck.

    The head master at the school was Mr Barns and his wife. There was a swing in the back garden a three wheel bike and a scooter, I only remember a black girl with small black curly hair which we seemed to think was funny.

    I was there until it closed in about 1955 and was sent to Coopersale near Epping, fostered for a year in Clacton then went to Hillcrest lodge in Walton on the Naze where I met Aunty Doris again. Funny thing was the dinning tables, toy lockers and beds came from Tending, perhaps the piano as well.

    We could have been in the same house as I started off in the girls house as I was to under school age. The only boy a think. Remember the thick cream on the milk in those days.

    If you slept in a room (Oaks) with a small boy it could have been me.

    Oaks/Chestnuts was the home with the biggest garden. I remember a picnic in the garden on Coronation Day. 

    Nice to hear from you. I don’t remember James as a name but I do rember things that we might have done together like climbing up the drain pipes. 

    Just seen that you were in the next door home, perhaps we met at school.

    By Colin Hughes (28/09/2015)
  • Had a mate from Foxcroft called Alan Gunn. Often wondered what happened to him!

    By Paul Atkinson (15/09/2015)
  • I was in Foxcroft with my two sisters in 1968 for three to four years I believe. Would like to hear from anyone there at the time. It was mainly boys.

    By Deborah Hicks (10/09/2015)
  • Hi Colin yes I remember Oaks ‘n’ Chestnuts. James, one of my brothers, remembers being in there, think I was too. Johnny was in the other one, older boys. Do you remember 2 black children same age as us, Stuart Tippett and Wendy Lowe. I can’t remember you Colin, you’re the same age as me, 67 nearly, lovely to hear from you tho’. Do you remember James? He was only year older than me. I hope life turned out good for you and all the kids that were in there.  

    By Maureen naylor (07/09/2015)
  • Sorry Colin I was in Firs ‘n’ Limes.

    By Maureen Naylor (07/09/2015)
  • Maureen, I was at Tendring children’s home in the 50s. I think there was two pairs of homes there and I seem to have been in the other one next door, I think called Oaks and Chestnuts.

    This home closed mid 50s I am now 67.

    By Colin Hughes (03/09/2015)
  • Jim thank you for your email saying Betty Wollard wanted to get in touch.      We have recently met up and spent a lovely couple of hours remenising about our time in Foxcroft. I was there from Jan/Feb 1956-June 1957. We have agreed to meet again probably in the new year.     

    By Sue Thomas nee Hayward (05/08/2015)
  • I’m very sorry for no replies till now. I did laugh when I read Gillians write up re my brother Alan Naylor; yes he was the pincher!!  And yes Alan did get knocked down, I remember he always tore around, he was badly hurt too. James would have been there till 1959/60, Alan was 6 years younger than James so he stayed for few more years. He was split by all the Aunties, Miss Nissan was in charge. If anyone wants to contact please do.

    By Maureen naylor (23/05/2015)
  • Hello, Can anyone please let me know if they were in Foxcroft with my father and uncle in 1958-59.  Their names are Albert and Peter Piper and they would have been aged about 11 years and 8 years old. please let me know if you know them.

    By Elaine Piper (29/03/2015)
  • Yes fond memories indeed.  See my sister Lesley has left a message a while back as well. Betty I’m sorry I don’t remember you but I have been sent your email address and will drop you a line. I remember Mary don’t know her last name but we were good friends. I remember two brothers one being Alan and I thought the other was Walter. Alan was forever crossing the road when he shouldn’t have and did end up getting knocked down. Whether this was the Naylor brothers I’m not sure. I was there from Jan/Feb 1956-June 1959. I did say I would write about my experience of being in Foxcroft but it brought back a lot of memories that I haven’t been able to do it yet. However I have been thinking about it lately and will try and do it. I think I am one of those people whose minds shut down to prevent bad things being remembered.

    By Sue Thomas (10/03/2015)
  • Fond memories, I remember you Sue Hayward, would be good to get in touch. 

    By Betty Wollard (08/03/2015)
  • Fond memorys of Foxcroft. I was there in the mid 70s and was treated well. Seem to recall using the term “aunty” but not sure if it was Betty. I went out to work there so must have been around 17yrs old. It was mixed girls and boys while I was there.

    By Shaun Doyle (15/12/2014)
  • I was at Foxcroft circa 1952/3, the matron was a Miss Noisome but I also remember Auntie Betty. Paul Millard is a name I remember as a boy who had to stay elsewhere as he became too old for the home. We had to move to Moulsham near Chelmsford for about a year while I assume Foxcroft was modernised. I remember with great fondness the holidays in Clacton and a lame gardner who played with us in the gardens at the rear.

    By Peter tagg (27/11/2014)
  • Reading about Alan Naylor, I do remember that name. I am sure one of them pinched a lot when he was excited and screwed up his face. I loved my time at Foxcroft, I was 5 years old, but was fostered out to live in South Green for 6yrs. I only have happy memories of them years.! 1958 till 1964. Auntie Betty, and Auntie Shan, I saw her last at my foster aunts funeral. She was pleased to see me, married with a daughter. Auntie Betty knew my two brothers, they lived in South Green home, Fenick and Joseph Hunnam. Me and my sister Christine were fostered out and Robert and Diane were in a nursery in Chelmsford. I loved my time at Foxcroft.

    By Gillian gradley (03/11/2014)
  • I took my sister to Foxcroft today and told her about it as she can not remember her time there. I loved Foxcroft with Auntie Shan, Betty and all the aunties there. We were a family split up hear there and every where, but I love my memories of Foxcroft and the garden. We were four from our family of six that stayed at Foxcroft, Fenwick, Joseph, Chris and me, Gillian.

    By Gillian gradley (02/11/2014)
  • You write about Aunty Betty (Raines) but what about Jan Storm, she worked at Foxcroft too. I seem to remember she was from Holland, and drove a Morris 1000, and it was green. She had a funny thing about changing her shoes in the car for a pair of slippers. She also moved down to South Green, I was the only one, out of the four sisters, that went to 12 Patricia Gardens . My sister’s were Elaine, Frances, Hilary and me Madeline, I am in the photo at the top of the page second row up, two from the right, the one with the fringe.

    By Madeline Cunningham (21/10/2014)
  • I’m keen to know when they closed Foxcroft. I did return to see the building a couple of years ago, and was saddened to see what had been done to the interior. But that’s progress. I was even more surprised to see the lovely big garden that was, is now a huge car park for a super market.  As children we had lots of fun in the garden. There was also an underground shelter we used when the siren went.  Incidentally, we were all girls during my time there. I loved being there and I just wish that I could contact the two friends I’ve already mentioned.

    By patricia booth (08/10/2014)
  • I was at Foxcroft with my three sisters (the Cunningham Girls) for many years from 1960. I was one of the children that moved down to Patricia Gardens, does anyone remember the Cunningham family, please get in touch

    By madeline cunningham (29/09/2014)
  • I’m still hoping that Nora Banks and Eileen Barton will be in touch from 1940-1944

    By Patricia Booth/Jewel Crimes (01/08/2014)
  • Have surched for years and now hope this is the site

    I was at Foxcroft Billericay, leaving there in 1944. I knew a Miss Jones, a senior/or head and a Miss Kellick a cleaner etc.

    However, I have been trying to trace two people. Nora Banks and Eileen Barton.  I went to live with an aunt but was not allowed to write to my two main friends.  Like me they will be in their seventies. I would love to meet with them if at all possible 

    By Patricia Booth Jewel Crimes in 1944 (24/04/2014)
  • I could be the Danny Teresa Tubudy mentioned, if you read this Teressa please get in touch it would be great to chat about our time there.

    By Danny Barker (20/04/2014)
  • In response to Maureen: I knew Alan Naylor. We both went to Billericay Primary School in the early sixties. He invited me to tea once at Foxcroft. That’s about all I remember except that I owe Alan an apology for something. He has probably forgotten all about it and maybe me too but it is something that has bugged me for some years now.  

    By Steven Copper (10/02/2014)
  • I’ve search for information on the children’s home but with no luck until now I’m hoping you can help me I was in the home when I was about 2 years and 6 months old I want to know everything about me while I was there and I do mean everything as I remembering being at the top of the outside stairs and the door opening and I was knocked down the stairs BUT I don’t remember anything until they brought me back to the home with 1 of my legs in plaster cast and they put me in the sickroom looking outside and a robin was sitting on the wall in the snow Please if anyone can tell me about my time in the home please let me know as I suffer with a really bad back and that fall could have been the start of my problems many thanks for having this site about Foxcroft may you Have Very Happy New Yearxx oh and if Betty Raines is still with us please tell her Thankyou for being there for all the children and me and my siblings.

    By Lesley Hayward (10/01/2014)
  • love my time there just got back from a day out

    By Anthony wall (30/11/2013)
  • I lived at foxcroft in 1959-1960? I was with my brothers there at the time fred i am 61 now

    By Anthony Wall (30/11/2013)
  • By Anthony Wall (30/11/2013)
  • I lived at foxcroft in 1953/4. I was the only coloured girl there at the time. My name then was susan smith. Ii eventually got fostered by an english family who ended up being very cruel to me. Then i was moved to another childrens home in Chelmsford, Essex. Life has carried on since then and now at 67 I am very happy. 

    By susan shaw (21/11/2013)
  • I was at foxcroft in the 1950’s.

    By susan smith (09/10/2013)
  • 2 of my brothers were in Foxcroft in the 50s. I will always remember my trips to see them from my childrens home in Tendring Limes and Firs. James and Alan Naylor, Alan was 2 when he arrived there he is now 60 James is now 66. Even as a visitor I have fond memories of Auntie Betty I think there was Auntie Shan she seemed a bit stricter

    By Maureen Mcduell nee naylor (24/05/2013)
  • Hi 2 of my brothers James and Alan Naylor were at Foxcroft for some years in the 50s I had many visits to see them from home I was also in care at the Limes and Firs in Tendring James is now 66 Alan is 60 both doing well im 64 now I shall always have fond memories of Auntie Betty on my visits to Foxcroft there was an Auntie Shan too seemed a bit stricter anyone remember James and Alan??

    By Maureen Mcduell NEE NAYLOR (24/05/2013)
  • 2 of my brothers were in Foxcroft when Auntie Betty was there and Auntie Shan Alan and James Naylor. Would have been 1950s early 60s.

    By maureen (23/05/2013)
  • Hi 2 of my brothers were in Foxcroft in the 50s early 60s James and Alan Naylor James is 66 now Alan is 60 many visits I made to see them at Foxcroft I was in a home in Tendring anyone know my brothers? or the Tendring home? iam now 64

    By MAUREEN (23/05/2013)
  • I attended Great Burstead primary school and a boy from Foxcroft was in my class and we were quite good friends his name was Paul Millard, I wonder what happened to him, he would be about 70yrs now.

    By Robin Lockhart (16/01/2013)
  • I was also in the Foxcroft children’s home round about 1960, I spent Xmas there and it was wonderful. Another child called Danny and I were takn out for Xmas day to an American family who were staying in Billericay and we had a most marvelous day. It has stayed with me all these years. Where is Danny now I wonder. I am 60 he was around 9-10 same as myself. Anyone with info on the home and when it ceased to be children’s home be very interested. Thank you Teresa

    By Teresa Tubridy (02/12/2012)
  • As a writer researching Billericay history, I have been interested in the children’s home and its move to South Green. Last week I interviewed Betty Raines for her memories of the time she helped to run the home all those years ago. Will try to post the article I wrote about it for the Billericay Weekly News a couple of years ago. Have some nice photos, which I will also post on the site soon.

    By Sylvia Kent (14/07/2011)
  • Sue! My father and 5 brothers where in Foxcroft too! This was in the 1960s, Joseph Smith? John Smith? Peter Paul Andrew. I have been trying for years to find info on anyone who went there or the home itself with no joy! I wonder if you can help me?

    By Jodie smith (16/06/2011)
  • What a great idea. I have just posted a reply/comment to the shopping trip article. I was in the Foxcroft Children’s home in the mid to late 1950’s. So pleased to be able to read some ones memories.

    By Sue Thomas (nee Hayward) (22/04/2011)

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