Collection SOHC 39 - Oral history project on children's services workers' experiences of residential childcare 1960-1975

Identity area

Reference code

GB 249 SOHC 39


Oral history project on children's services workers' experiences of residential childcare 1960-1975


  • 2013 - 2014 (Creation)

Level of description


Extent and medium

22 digital audio files, 22 pdf files

Context area

Archival history

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

Transferred from Scottish Oral History Centre at University of Strathclyde, 21 July 2021.

Content and structure area

Scope and content

Oral history project, conducted in 2013 and 2014 by Andrew Kendrick, Angela Bartie, Moyra Hawthorn and Julie Shaw, researchers at the University of Strathclyde. The project's aim was to record the personal experiences of residential workers and children's social workers who worked with children in residential services in the period 1960 – 1975, exploring their views on the experiences of children and standards, and their reflections on changes over time. 22 people were interviewed.

The interviewees include house parents, residential care workers, social workers, childcare officers and teachers. They worked in a range of care environments including residential care homes and nurseries, group homes, and List D schools. These were located across Scotland including Edinburgh and the Lothians, Glasgow, Aberdeenshire, Stirlingshire, Ayrshire, Argyll, and Angus.

Topics covered in the interviews include working roles, daily routines, the backgrounds of the young people coming into care, social and economic conditions at that time, and standards of care within different care home environments. The interviews also discuss child abuse, use of corporal punishment, relationships with colleagues, education, dealing with challenging behaviour, the introduction of the Social Work (Scotland) Act and the children’s hearing system, and thoughts on developments in residential care.

Appraisal, destruction and scheduling


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Conditions of access and use area

Conditions governing access

Most of the interviews are redacted in compliance with the wishes of the interviewees and/or the UK General Data Protection Regulation and the Data Protection Act 1998.

Conditions governing reproduction

Language of material

  • English

Script of material

    Language and script notes

    Physical characteristics and technical requirements

    Finding aids

    Allied materials area

    Existence and location of originals

    Existence and location of copies

    Related units of description

    This collection is part of the Scottish Oral History Centre Archive.

    Publication note

    Julie Shaw, Andrew Kendrick, Reflecting on the Past: Children’s Services Workers’ Experiences of Residential Care in Scotland from 1960 to 1975, The British Journal of Social Work, Volume 47, Issue 2, March 2017, Pages 375–391,

    Notes area

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