Ancestry UK

St Vincent's Home for Roman Catholic Working Boys (Father Berry's Home), Liverpool, Lancashire

On November 1st, 1891, the St Vincent de Paul Society leased 105 Shaw Street, Liverpool, for use as a Working Boys' Home and Night Shelter. The Society soon concluded that it lacked the resources to maintain the Home and it was taken over by the Roman Catholic Diocese of Liverpool. The Home was placed under the care of Father John Berry, of the Catholic Institute, Hope Street, who had already established several other boys' shelters in the city, which became known as Father Berry's Homes.

On June 26th, 1893, the St Vincent de Paul's Home for Roman Catholic Working Boys was formally certified to operate as an Auxiliary Home, with accommodation for 75 boys. It served the city's three Roman Catholic boys' Industrial Schools: St George's on West Derby Road, St Vincent's on Beacon Lane, and Boys' Refuge on St Anne Street. The St Vincent's Home, as it was more usually known, provided supervised hostel-style accommodation for boys leaving, or on licence from, custodial care and taking up outside employment. The superintendent of the Home was a former army sergeant, Garnett Barry, with Mrs Barry as matron.

An initial report on the Home noted that the premises consisted of a large and commodious house and back garden. The rooms were spacious and well ventilated, and the dormitories large and airy. There was a good gymnasium, bathroom and washroom, and a small room for ailing boys. The inmates were occupied during the day in various employments in the city, coming home for their meals and sleeping on the premises.

Former St Vincent's Home for Working Boys, 105 Shaw Street, Liverpool, 2013. © Peter Higginbotham

The official capacity of the Home was raised to 100 as from April 2nd, 1895.

By 1920, the Home had become known as St Vincent's House Home, with Garnett Barry still in post as superintendent. By 1930, Mr G.C. Goss held the position.

On April 7th, 1933, St Vincent's House was re-certified as an Auxiliary Home for St Vincent's and St George's, both of which had recently been redesignated as Approved Schools. The Home provided accommodation for up to 60 boys.

In 2013, the Shaw Street building was standing semi-derelict.


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