Berry Training Farm was initially a training home, organised on the cottage system, which was originally intended for boys aged between 14 and 18 years.
In the mid-1960s there was a large-scale building programme at Berry, by which time there were two houses accommodating a total of 60 boys, who were thought by the Department to be incapable of proceeding to school certificate level. There was an internal school for the younger boys. According to the 1965 Annual Report of the Child Welfare Department, 40 of these boys were between 12 and 15, and 'the remainder [were] receiving dairy and farm training in preparation for rural placement'.
A former resident of Berry Training Farm, who attended from 1972 until 1977, told Find & Connect he believed the institution began holding boys who were as young as 12 in the 1960s. According to him, boys were placed in the training farm for five year sentences.
In 1977 the Berry Training Farm, by then known as the Berry Boys Home, closed. The site was converted to the Berry Sport and Recreation Centre. In 2009 a new hall, designed by Allen Jack + Cottier architects won first prize in the sport category at the world architecture festival in Barcelona.
09 January 2019
Cite this: https://www.findandconnect.gov.au/guide/nsw/NE00404
First published by the Find & Connect Web Resource Project for the Commonwealth of Australia, 2011
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