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143 Reviews
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37 of 37 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Biggest Government Blunder Ever Uncovered
I too have been shocked by this story. I cannot believe that our Government farmed our children out like this, it beggars belief and the attitude of the agencies concerned is shameful. What is alarming is the timespan involved. I thank Margaret Humphreys for uncovering this horrendous fiasco and hope that her book has brought shame on anyone who played any part in the...
Published on 24 Jan 2002

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Shocking
I am glad that I read the book as it is important to know what happened and how it was covered up but I actually didn't enjoy the book as a good read. It was informative but I felt that the author was listing case after case, many of which were distressing. It was factual rather than literary. It certainly was emotive and tugged at my heartstrings. I felt sorry for...
Published 15 months ago by B. Fitzhugh


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37 of 37 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Biggest Government Blunder Ever Uncovered, 24 Jan 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: Empty Cradles (Paperback)
I too have been shocked by this story. I cannot believe that our Government farmed our children out like this, it beggars belief and the attitude of the agencies concerned is shameful. What is alarming is the timespan involved. I thank Margaret Humphreys for uncovering this horrendous fiasco and hope that her book has brought shame on anyone who played any part in the child migration schemes. I commend Margaret, her attitude and tireless efforts to do so much in challenging the relevant bodies and more importantly giving children their families back. The memories of this book will live with me forever.
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27 of 27 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Shocking, moving and essential reading, Empty Cradles defies belief, 15 Mar 2010
By 
Mrs. S. Biddulph (London, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Empty Cradles (Paperback)
This book made me angry and made me cry, it never failed to elicit an emotion. It is a powerful and moving story that defies belief. The hidden history of child migration is from another time, but living in the here and now. It is totally inconceivable that a government can send its most vulnerable, children in care, thousands of miles away ripping them from their homeland, some as young as three. The deceit and cruelty ring out from the pages not only for what Britain did, but also for how Australia treated the "lost innocents", many of whom suffered appalling abuse. The poor mites didn't stand a chance. It is a testament to their courage that they managed to live adult lives after such desperate childhoods. They have incredible hope and determination matched only by the truly remarkable Margaret Humphreys. She is an amazing woman. The way she followed her instincts to help people, do good and bring the hidden secret of child migration to the forefront of a nation's conscience. The sacrifices she made, giving her time freely and courageously are incredible. Throughout she never judges or apportions blame, instead she focuses on what really counts, reuniting families. She is a humbling human being. I met her shortly before the British government formally apologised for the part it played in child migration. Another milestone in her extraordinary journey. I wanted to know more after that meeting so I bought this book. It has gripped me from the first page. Although the writing isn't brilliant, the content is among the most compelling and moving I've ever read. Everyone should know about it and read it.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Oranges and Sunshine: Empty Cradles, 2 May 2011
This review is from: Oranges and Sunshine: Empty Cradles (Paperback)
A friend recommended this story on Facebook. I was intrigued by the title and was totally surprised. Unfortunately, it's not in the U.S. yet. I ordered the book through Amazon.co.uk. and received it within a couple of days and read it in just as many. Your heart breaks to read of the hurt children go through and endure throughout their lives. All it takes is ONE person to try to mend the hurt and seek justice for the children, now adults. It's a very good read. You won't be disappointed, maybe only with the human condition.
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32 of 33 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I am shocked by this story. How could this have happened?, 8 Aug 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Empty Cradles (Paperback)
This story is so troublesome and intense that you cannot put it down for a minute. This story bothers me to think that the British Government was so cruel to these children. I am from the USA and you cannot obtain this book here and I really don't know why. Saw the story on 60 minutes and called them in New York and they gave me the telephone no. of The Child Migrants Trust in UK and that is how I was able to obtain the book. From this story, I plan to make a donation to them. I would hope that others who have read the story would feel the same way.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One Woman's Fight to Right a Terrible Wrong, 7 Jan 2011
This review is from: Empty Cradles (Hardcover)
When, in the course of her work as a social worker, Margaret Humphreys uncovered the heartbreaking truth about the hundreds of child migrants sent from England to Australia and Canada, she was appalled.
Determined to help the men and women who had been led to believe they were orphans or were unwanted, she embarked on a one woman campaign assist them in finding out about their parents and where possible enabling them to be reunited with family members. Sadly for many their parents were no longer alive.

It was clear a double deception had taken place, for their parents had often been given the impression their children were going to good, caring homes.

At great personal expense she travelled to meet them and hear their stories. A charity was set up with its headquarters in Nottingham where a small team work tirelessly to deal with people desperate to find out about their family backgrounds and to gain a sense of true belonging.

A film is being made about Margaret Humphreys and her work on behalf of child migrants, work which last year earned her official recognition and an award.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars EMPTY CRADELS by Margaret Humphries, 3 Jan 2010
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This review is from: Empty Cradles (Paperback)
This real-life account is absolutely essential reading for anyone concerned or interested in the welfare of children. What Margaret Humpries uncovered in the early 90s about child migration between the 1940s into the 1960s is almost incredible & something I consider akin to the holocaust! These children, many of whom are now in their 40s & 50s had no-one to speak for them until she began her campaign to discover the truth. They nmmber thousands who were sent to Australia & Canada, from various children's homes & respecatable charity institutions, some as young as 3 & 4 years old, often without parental consent, who experienced the most horrific physical, mental & sexual abuse fromt their new carers, with no adult voice to speak for them or to turn to in their trauma. Recently, as a result of Australia's public apology for their country's treatment of these children & for the regognition of the work of Margaret Humphries in the uncovering of the atrocities, there has been media coverage concerning the subject & some distressing interviews with people who experienced it.
Faith Garrison
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lost children and parents, 14 April 2009
By 
Mrs. Lorna A. Hooper (Erskine, Scotland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Empty Cradles (Paperback)
Excellent book. Sad, factual and sensitvely written.
Hopefully nothing like this will ever happen again.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Empty Cradles, 21 Jan 2004
By 
Mrs L A Hale (Barlborough, Derbyshire United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Empty Cradles (Hardcover)
Being a Foster Carer who is about to adopt in middle england it was an amazing story to read about what happened to all those children not so long ago. It made really interesting reading and made me want to get up and start helping out straight away. It was such compelling reading it only took 2 days to read - which with 4 children is amazing!!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars How could we let it happen?, 22 Feb 2010
By 
L. C. Walton (U.K.) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Empty Cradles (Paperback)
A very moving book, I could not put it down. Kept having to remind myself this is not fiction, it really happened. Excellent read.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Empty Cradles, 13 Oct 2012
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This review is from: Empty Cradles (Hardcover)
Heartbreaking! Why was this emigration of children allowed to happen? The author does an excellent job of exposing those responsible. I shudder to think how the children, now mostly elderly must have felt at being told their parents were dead. Can't call it an enjoyable read, but it is an essential read about a previously untold story of our recent history.
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Oranges and Sunshine: Empty Cradles
Oranges and Sunshine: Empty Cradles by Margaret Humphreys (Paperback - 17 Mar 2011)
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