Lost Lost Families: Man left in railroad inn as a baby learns that he has six brothers and sisters 56 years later
A man nicknamed Oliver Twist by hospital workers after being left by his birth mother in a box of corned beef in a Railway Tavern, discovers he has six full siblings in Long Lost Family: Born Without Trace.
Tonight’s episode of the ITV show features Simon Jeffery, now 56, who still had a wet umbilical cord when he was left in a box in a crate outside of a box on October 23, 1963 in Greenhithe, Kent – now a McDonald’s restaurant. railroad cafe in Greenhithe.
Nicknamed Oliver Twist by Gravesend Hospital staff, Simon’s story made headlines – but he just happened to learn about his beginnings at the age of 10.
“I was found in a wooden box of corned beef with two cans of corned beef in a baby nursery, and I was left at the ladies’ toilets,” explains Simon, who now lives just five miles from his abandoned home.
Simon Jeffery, 56, still had a wet umbilical cord when he was left in a box on October 23, 1963 in Greenhithe, Kent – now a McDonald’s restaurant – in Greenhithe. Pictured after reuniting with three of his siblings from left to right: Tony, Christine, Simon and Julie
Simon was nicknamed Oliver Twist by Gravesend hospital staff, and his story made headlines – but he just happened to get started at the age of 10. Pictured, with host Davina McCall
“A women’s darts game was almost played here, so I imagine it would be a bit full so my birth mother knew someone would find me soon.
“She absolutely wanted me to be found, which means she loved me, but for some reason she had no choice.”
Simon was taken in by the foster carers of Gravesend, Cathleen and Earnest Jeffrey, who adopted him. His parents have since died, but he still lives in the same house with his wife Jane and son Jack.
But when Simon was 10 years old, he made a discovery that left him wondering who his parents really were.
“Me and my boyfriend were messing around and we found a look,” he explains. “I opened it and the newspaper clippings in it. I took the cuttings out and the first one I saw was ‘abandoned baby’. ‘
“Because the newspaper clipping didn’t really mention my name, I thought, ‘Maybe it’s not me’ – but then there was a newspaper clipping that made it all clear.
During tonight’s episode of the ITV show, Simon learns that he has four surviving siblings, three of whom agreed to meet him. Shown with Tony, Christine and Julie
Simon is shocked to discover that he and sister Julie (stake) both worked in the same Coop in Dartford in the same year
“It was a picture of the baby. I had already seen this photo because I had the original copy at home. Then I realized I was this. ‘
He remembers that moment and continues, “It was a bit of a shock. It felt like I was just thrown out. I want to know where my mom was, what she found, if she’s fine and why she let me down. ‘
After getting Simon’s DNA test results, a social worker reveals her discovery that a member of the extended family has moved to live in the Dartford area – the area where Simon is from.
After asking several family members to take the test, two of the people showed their first cousins to Simon, while another person tested turns out to be a full sibling – a brother.
The results also reveal that Simon’s brother is one of six siblings – but unfortunately both his parents and two of his brothers have died, leaving two living sisters and two living brothers.
They all grew up in Gravesend, and two of his sisters still live there – and three of his siblings – Christine, Julie and Tony – agree to meet him, but admit they had no idea about their abandoned brother.
Nicky Campbell (pictured) helps foundlings – people who are abandoned as babies, often in the early hours and days of their lives – to unravel secrets from their past
“I was a premature baby,” explains Christine. “I was three months early. Mommy may have had postnatal depression. ‘
Tony adds, “It wasn’t talked about these days,” Julie continues, “I just think she had six kids and he came alone and she just couldn’t take it anymore.”
When asked how far they grew up from where Simon was in Gravesend, Christine replies, “About three kilometers. We could have walked past him. ‘
After seeing a photo of their sibling, Jane says, “He looks like Tony,” and says, “I see myself. Well done, he found his family.
Christine added, “He’s our little brother and hopefully we’ll have a happy family.”
And Simon is shocked to learn that his parents were married in 1951 and that his six siblings were born and lived in the area in a decade – he was the youngest.
“It’s very different from what I’ve built up in my head,” he says. “Wow Davina. That’s a tough one. ‘
After being shown a photo of three of his siblings, an emotional Simon gasps: “Oh my word. Yes, I can see a parable. This is my family!
“And is that Tony? He looks so much like me. He really does it! Our paths have probably been crossed so many times. So often.’
Davina then shows Simon a photo of his birth parents before revealing that three of his siblings would like to meet him.
“Oh my god,” he says. ‘I can not believe it. I did not expect that. It is simply incredible. ‘
And when the long-awaited reunion arrives, Simon discovers that the siblings thought they were just a family of six – and he was never mentioned.
“Mom was very secretive,” explains Christine. “She was silent. She loved knitting, sewing and cooking. She was a good cook. ‘
Jane adds, “Mom and Dad were close. I think Dad knew about you. I think Dad took you in the car and left you there because they must have decided that between them. She couldn’t drive and she had just given birth, so she couldn’t get a boss. ‘
But the reunited brothers and sisters get another shock when Simon mentions working in Dartford Co-Op in 1986.
“Me too,” replies his sister Julie. ‘I was there.’
An emotional Tony adds, “There was an immediate connection. And they just look like me. It is awesome. It was absolutely stunning. Myself and Julie work in the same shop. So our paths crossed without knowing they were crossing each other. ‘
ITV’s Long Lost Family: Born Without Trace at 9pm