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"It was a very good environment, in particular for the time when having a baby as a single parent you were very much a second class citizen and looked down on."

"Good memories, good memories, It was what I needed... I mean I dread to think what might have happened to me if there wasn't the The Croft at the time "

"The Croft was like being a family without being family ... You are starting again. You are starting afresh and you could be who you wanted to be"

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Julie's Story

"I did enjoy school. I stayed on an extra year at school to do a commercial course, shorthand and typing.

But my parents didn’t really....they weren’t really interested in my education in all honesty. You know, we only used to have one table at home and if I wanted to do my homework or anything my mum used to say 'Oh put that away your dad’s coming home for his dinner in a minute' So I was never encouraged academically. 

I used to be an accounts clerk at a wallpaper company ... and it was whilst I was there that I got pregnant with my son Jay.

... I told my mum and she said '... I can’t tell your dad, I daren’t tell your dad' ... but she did and I was thrown out. I was thrown ... out straight away."

Moved to The Croft in 1971

"I don’t know whether a Social Worker mentioned it to me. I think it was a Social Worker that mentioned it to me. What happened with me. Basically I didn’t have a place at The Croft and this Social Worker ... You know years ago you used to have to stay in hospital for ten days after you’d had the baby. My ten days was up but I’d got nowhere to go from the hospital. I’d got nowhere to live basically. So the Social Worker asked the hospital if I could stay in for an extra two days while she sorted something for me. Which the hospital allowed. And ... and then the Social Worker came on the Monday and she took me to a house in Carlton ... and when I got there it was shocking to be quite honest. The lady that lived there she’d got about five or six children in stepping stones and they’d all got like really dirty noses and the house wasn’t that clean. And I’d taken my baby, you know, I’d taken my new baby and - ugh - I can never forget it because she said...the lady said to me ... you know if you want to put your baby in my baby’s pram, my baby’s in the cot asleep upstairs and the pram was really dirty and she’d cooked for me. You know, she was a nice person really, she tried to help and all the time - I couldn’t eat the food because I was thinking about my baby in this dirty pram. And so ... basically I made a lie up and I just said to this woman, I said 'Oh I’ve got a friend that lives in Carlton'. I didn’t know Carlton at all, I didn’t know where I was. But I said 'Oh I’ve got a friend that lives in Carlton, I think I’ll visit her this afternoon” and I just needed to escape. BasicalIy I needed to go. But I’d got a couple of suitcases with all baby ... because I’d been knitting for the nine months and all the rest of it, I’d got all this baby stuff and a couple of cases ...and ... basically I just left the house with the baby bottle and the milk and a few of my bits and I just went to a bus stop and I didn’t know whether I was going into Nottingham or further into Carlton, I didn’t know where I was going. But as luck would have it I was going into Nottingham and so what I did, I just didn’t know what to do, I just turned up at my mum’s address, you know at home. And ... she said to me, 'Oh you can’t stay here, your dad’ll be home from work soon.' But I did and I told my dad and you know I said it was really dirty and ... and then my dad actually went to the house and he gave the lady some money to say thank you and they did let me stay Well, they said I could stay for a week to sort myself out but I did stay actually at home until I got the place at The Croft, which was like - I think Jay was about four weeks old when I went to The Croft. But in all honesty, I’ll never forget, I’d got a white van to come and collect me and all the stuff and each time I was taking stuff out to the van I kept thinking my mum’s going to say 'Don’t go, you don’t need to go'. But as it happens it was the best thing.To go."