Marjorie Her War Years. Foreword by Gordon Brown

Marjorie Her War Years. Foreword by Gordon Brown

2d Image Back coverbw

Release date: August 11, 2018


Her family broken apart and her identity taken away, she had to forget her past in order to face her future. But forgetting isn’t forever.

Taken from their mother’s care and deported from England to the colonies, Marjorie Arnison and her nine-year-old brother, Kenny, were sent to the Prince of Wales Fairbridge Farm School on Vancouver Island in September 1937. Their eight-year-old sister, Audrey, followed the next August.

Marjorie’s new home was an isolated farm, in a cottage with at least ten other girls, with a “cottage mother” at the head. Cottage mothers had complete control over their “children” like Marjorie.

Survival meant sticking to bare essentials, and that meant accepting a loss Marjorie found hard to forgive. Turning inward, she would find strength that pulled her through, but she had to lock away her memories in order to endure her new life.

Marjorie was well into her senior years before those memories resurfaced.


An important book because it exposes the dark side of “civilized” society, as it reveals the strength of the human heart to rise above that darkness.

Rex Weyler, author of Blood of the Land and Greenpeace: The Inside Story



Marjorie with former Prime Minister Gordon Brown – February 2010 – London Formal Apology to all British Child Migrants

Marjorie’s photo from her time at the Middlemore Emigration Home in Birmingham

Marjorie Too Afraid to Cry:
A Home Child Experience

Marjorie Arnison was one of the thousands of children removed from their families, communities, and country and placed in a British colony or commonwealth to provide “white stock” and cheap labour. In Marjorie’s case, she was sent to Prince of Wales Fairbridge Farm School, just north of Victoria, British Columbia, in 1937. As a child, Patricia was angered that her mother wouldn’t talk about the past. It took many years to discover why — it wasn’t because she was keeping a dark secret, but because she had “lost” her childhood.

For 10-year-old Marjorie, forgetting her past, her family, and England was the only survival tool she had at her disposal to enable her to face her frightening and uncertain future. This is Marjorie’s account as told by her daughter. It is a story of fear, loss, courage, survival, and finding one’s way home.

Kenny, Marjorie and Audrey Arnison at the Prince of Wales Fairbridge Farm School

A Fairbridge girl and Marjorie Arnison – with lamb, at the Prince of Wales Fairbridge Farm School


The Vancouver Island Coach Lines arriving at the remote Prince of Wales Fairbridge Farm School with another group of British Child Migrants


This is a story of not just loss but of engagement between a mother and daughter trying to recover and record a personal journey that affected three generations. It will stand as a testimony to understanding the effect of separation from home and family on thousands of British child migrants sent to Canada and Australia.
Geoffrey Sherington, Author
Hi Patricia. Thank you so much for your book. I am half way through it already and find it so interesting as I LIVED in the Newcastle area before coming to Canada. Family is so important. It took me so long to find my four brothers and 1 sister, in fact I was 63 years old before I new they existed.
Sydney Baker , Reader
January 19, 2013 All I can say is WOW!  I have read it and found it very well written and very interesting from start to finish.  Other historically based books that I tried to read were very dry and either it took a long time to read or I gave up on them.  Way to go!