Get in touch: send your photos, videos, news & views by texting YORK to 80360 or send an email»
Freda Pickering and Carole Davies reunited after being separated through wartime adoption
Freda Pickering when she was reunited with her daughter, Carole Davies, for the first time in 40 years, after having been separated through a wartime adoption.
A MOTHER who was reunited with the daughter she gave up for adoption 65 years ago found they spent seven years as strangers travelling on the same bus.
Freda Pickering, now 83, was an unmarried 19-year-old when she gave birth to baby Carole in Wetherby in 1948.
She said: “I named her Carole because it was around Christmas time when she was born and I thought it was appropriate. Carole was a month or so premature so she had to stay at the hospital for a while.
“I was allowed a one-day visit when I brought her home, but the decision was made that she would be adopted.
“I knew that it was what had to happen, so although I wished I could keep her, I knew there was nothing I could do.”
Carole’s father, a Croation exile, married another woman after their brief relationship, but Freda, now of Collingham, West Yorkshire, often thought about her, and received a letter in 2005, after Carole’s daughter uploaded their family details online.
It said: “I don’t really know why you were unable to look after me, but whatever the reason, I believe you did what you thought was best, or had to do, at that time.
“I do not blame you, I am not angry with you, and I have always understood that it must have been a difficult and emotional choice.”
When they finally spoke, Carole discovered that for several years, she was closer to Freda than either had realised, as conductor of the bus which took Carole to Tadcaster Grammar School, twice a day for seven years.
Carole, now Davies, said: “I had absolutely no idea that the lady who checked my bus pass twice a day was my mum. It was a complete shock when we began talking about our past and my school life, and that was mentioned.
“I don’t remember anything about the bus conductor, and all along it was my mum. It’s incredible how we’ve been able to find each other.”
Carole said: “It has been amazing to spend the lost birthdays and Christmases together.”
Freda said: “It’s unbelievable to think that we were so close to each other for all the years Carole was at school.
“It’s nice to think that I was a part of her life when she was younger when I thought I wasn’t. My husband Ron and I couldn’t have children, and that’s the only thing I regret, is not having a family.
“But now I have a big family – Carole has two children and grandchildren so now I’m a great-grandma. It’s marvellous, I’m very happy.”
Comments are closed on this article.