Q I am researching my family tree and as part of that the Mount Zion home. My father and his brothers were placed in the home in approximately 1947. This was due to the breakdown in their parents’ marriage and my grandmother being unable to care for them.
The details I have are (the ages are approximate): Richard Alastair Bliss, age 12. Anthony Herman Bliss, age 10. Roger Conway Bliss, age 4. Edward David Bliss, age 2. I know that my Uncle David (Edward) was in the home until he turned 16.
I would love to have copies of any reference material, for example registers or diaries. I have read an article in the Cockpit relating to the home but it made the place seem pleasant and I understand from my family that this was not always the case.
The picture of the home would be a wonderful thing to have as it would give me a solid idea of what the place was like. I have just a picture in mind of what I think it looked like.
My uncle mentioned a book written by one of the children at the home called ‘Mount Zion’ by Jane MacKenzie (not sure of the spelling of her name). I have been unable to track this down, have you heard of it? I would like to thank you for your offer of assistance, I am touched that you have reached out to me and that you are willing to help. You don’t know how much this means.
Q2. I wonder if you could possibly help me. I was brought up in a childrens’ home in Lubbock Road called Mount Zion.
The couple who ran it were the Rev Emmanuelle Davidson and his wife who lived at Seven Trees next to the Church. I would dearly love to have any photos of the road but all searches i have made has failed to give me even an address I could write to. I would be eternally grateful if you could furnish me an address or website that would be of help
A1. Incredibly this enquiry arrived just as we had made contact with Anna Meyer, a surviving refugee from Prague, one of the first children cared for by Rev and Mrs Davidson in Seven Trees/Mount Zion, Lubbock Road. Anna was able to send us a copy of the book ‘Searching for Mr Mackenzie’ from which the relevant pages were scanned to the enquirer. We were also able to find a copy of For a Rescue and a Hope by Mrs Davidson available on Abe books, this was purchased and sent to Australia for the enquirer along with the photograph we have of St Hugh’s Prep school (shown above) which became Mount Zion (originally Lamas, the home of Sir John Lubbock). At a subsequent History Group meeting, Roger Speers, a fount of local knowledge, recalled being at school in Edgebury with the Mackenzie boys.
A2. Roy Hopper, our Cockpit Editor and local historian has been in contact with Joe Fisk, and an article in the Winter 2008 Edition of the Cockpit (which you can download here…) covers the history and signficance of this home.