Fairbridge Farm Schools of New South Wales was set up in 1937 to arrange the emigration of children from the United Kingdom and their care and schooling at the Fairbridge Farm School, Molong. Children were sent to New South Wales by the Fairbridge Society, London, but their care and schooling after they arrived in Australia was the responsibility of the Fairbridge Farm Schools. When Fairbridge Farm Schools closed in 1973 it was replaced by the Fairbridge Foundation.
Fairbridge Farm Schools was started by a group of 12 New South Wales Rhodes Scholars and four other citizens who wanted to bring the principles of Kingsley Fairbridge to New South Wales. They formed a committee in 1935 and by 1937 had begun a subscription list and purchased a property called Narragoon, near Molong. They appointed a farm manager in March 1937 and in December 1937 Fairbridge Farm Schools of New South Wales was incorporated as a company.
Fairbridge Farm Schools made a deal with the Fairbridge Society in London that the Society would supply them with children, in return for using the name Fairbridge. They accepted the London Fairbridge Society's demand that it retain the right to hire and fire the principal of Fairbridge Farms and control the records of children at Molong.
The Fairbridge Society, London was involved in similar schemes in other places including the Farm School at Pinjarra in Western Australia and others in Canada and Rhodesia (Zimbabwe). The difference between the Molong Farm School and the other Fairbridge Farm Schools is that, while all the others were established and operated with monies largely from the United Kingdom, the Molong Farm School was established and operated with monies largely from Australian sources.
The Fairbridge Farm School, Molong closed in 1973.
The money from the sale of the farm was administered by the Fairbridge Foundation, which had replaced the original Fairbridge Society. It has the responsibility of distributing its revenues, as donations, to charitable institutions for underprivileged children in New South Wales and has responsibility for the custody of the personal files of the children who passed through the Fairbridge Farm School at Molong.
1935 - 1973 Fairbridge Farm Schools
c. 1973 - c. 2016 Fairbridge Foundation
Sources used to compile this entry: 'The Forgotten Australians - Fairbridge Farm School, Molong', in Migration Heritage Centre New South Wales, Migration Heritage Centre New South Wales, NSW Government, 2010, http://www.migrationheritage.nsw.gov.au/exhibition/fairbridge/fairbridge-transcripts/; Coldrey, Barry, Good British stock: child and youth migration to Australia, This is a research guide published by the National Archives of Australia. It contains detailed historical information about Australia's immigration policy and child and youth migration to Australia. It also has information about relevant archival records in Australia and overseas relating to child and youth migration., National Archives of Australia, 1999, https://www.naa.gov.au/help-your-research/research-guides/good-british-stock-child-and-youth-migration-australia; Hill, David, The Forgotten Children: Fairbridge Farm School and its betrayal of Australia's child migrants, Random House, North Sydney, 2007, 338 pp; Hyde, Penny, Investigating Molong's Fairbridge Farm School, ABC Central West NSW, 1 March 2013, http://www.abc.net.au/local/stories/2013/02/28/3700718.htm; Immigration Museum, Stolen childhoods, Museum Victoria, 2011-2012, https://museumsvictoria.com.au/article/stolen-childhoods/; Molong Historical Society, Fairbridge and the Molong Community, Migration Heritage Centre New South Wales: NSW Government, 2010, http://www.migrationheritage.nsw.gov.au/projects/fairbridge-farm-school/; Old Fairbridgians Association, Old Fairbridgians Association, http://oldfairbridgians.org/; Old Fairbridgians Association, History of Fairbridge Farm School Molong NSW, Old Fairbridgians Association/Molong Historical Society, http://www.users.on.net/~quincejam/farm.html; O'Neill, Cate; Rosser, Debra, Fairbridge (c. 1909 - ), Find & Connect web resource, Find & Connect web resource project for the Commonwealth of Australia, 2013, http://www.findandconnect.gov.au/ref/wa/biogs/WE00270b.htm; Thinee, Kristy and Bradford, Tracy, Connecting Kin: Guide to Records, A guide to help people separated from their families search for their records [completed in 1998], New South Wales Department of Community Services, Sydney, New South Wales, 1998, https://clan.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2020/10/connectkin_guide.pdf.
Prepared by: Naomi Parry
Created: 21 March 2011, Last modified: 9 December 2013