Explore the Ryan Report

1 entry for Margaret


A newspaper report (source not given, in Lunney, at 93-9418) gives a graphic description of conditions in some Dublin homes under the heading of ‘Shocking Case of Neglect’, during the Second World War years. Miss Hannah Clarke, Inspector of the NSPCC gave evidence in court, stating that when she visited the one roomed home of this particular family in Dublin, she found three very neglected children in the room. The eldest girl was six years of age. They were alone. According to Miss Clarke: ‘Mary was dirty, her hair verminous and her clothes dirty and verminous. She was wearing old slippers. Margaret was in the same condition. Carmel was lying on a filthy bed. Her head was a moving mass of vermin. There was no food in the room and witness went to a shop and purchased bread, butter and milk for the children’s tea. The father stated that it was not his duty to clean the children while the mother admitted negligence but pleaded ill health. Both parents were sentenced to imprisonment. The report went on to state that in the opinion of the presiding justice, Mr Little, ‘the children should be sent to one of those admirable institutions, miscalled industrial schools, which were really boarding schools for the poor.

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