A MIGZIE TALE….

Every so often, I read something that I know will stay with me for a very long time.

From well-loved books I have read and re-visited many times, through well-written magazine articles, right down to blog posts that I have stumbled upon quite by accident while looking for something else – there will thankfully, always be examples of the written word that will leave an indelible mark.

The following extract is one of those; it’s a poem contained within a book of poetry, written by a man from Birkenhead on the Wirral, and one which narrates his life – in verse.

Stephen Wynne was diagnosed as being Bi-Polar, after he suffered a complete breakdown on his 33rd birthday in 1999, which may have been the result of his battle with the drugs he had turned to, following the suicide at age 26, of his younger brother Peter in 1994.

Peter had been taken into care in North Wales as a boy, following the breakdown of his parents marriage, and it was discovered years later that he had been tortured, tormented and physically abused whilst residing at the Bryn Estyn children’s home.

Stephen Wynne (1966-2010)

Stephen sadly, also took his own life in 2010 after a courageous battle with his condition, aged just 44.

His book ‘A Migzie Tale’ was published following his death in 2010 by Xlibris in the United States, and although copies are getting increasingly scarce now, a few are still available to purchase online, the proceeds of which – go to his son Callum.

 

 “BRYN ESTYN”

16 February 2000

I’d been doing Peters portrait, finally making a start

Drawing all the detail, in photo state of art

I received a telephone call, from my darling mother

“Have you heard the news?” She added, “It’s about your brother

Go and buy a newspaper, Daily Mirror or Daily Mail

It’s about Bryn Estyn; it’s like the weather as a gale

It tells of all the horrors, with Childrens abuse

And tells why Peter died, and chose to use a noose”

I finished what I was doing, all things made a drop

And hurried down the High Street, to a paper shop.

650 was boldly written, on the heading page

That’s how many were abused, roughly as a gauge

Perverts run the children’s home, where the kids did dwell

Sexually abusing them, making lives a living hell

An investigation started, when Peter made a complaint

With another who’d been abused, and both became a saint

Both went to the police, and started the interviews

When the story surfaced, it was highlighted in the news

I started to read the Mirror, to find out all the fact

And read a certain paragraph, of someone Peter had attacked

He’d spotted him in a pub, then he went straight home

And got a Samurai sword, whilst he was on his own

He broke the sword in half, and put it in his jacket

Returning to the pub, to make an awful racket

As I read the paragraph, I instantly realised

Why Peter had attacked him, which was no surprise

The abuser was abused, which he freely admitted

But was never punished, or even ever committed

Peter then got punished, and of which got sent to jail

For a six-month sentence, sending him off the rail

Peter had struck his face, 3 times with the sword

Slashing open the abuser’s nose, with the anger stored

Bryn Estyn got shut down, when the news had shaken

16 then committed suicide, if I’m not mistaken

With soon getting the answers, of Peter’s suicide

I wish he hadn’t done it, and hadn’t bloody died

I read the Daily Mail next, reading pages of a few

And saw Peter’s  picture, not just one but two

There was a story written, why he was in care

With some slight confusion, coz the reporter wasn’t there

I won’t give all the reasons, but he broke my mother’s heart

Making her so very ill, with all the things he used to start

He’d been given 2 options, I remember much of them

One was to change his ways, and to be good again

He chose the other option, which of course was care

It was his own undoing, and why that he was there

He’d been a little tear-away, always in a fight

I always blame the divorce, which had caused the plight

Another thing the story said, he was missing his head-stone

Where he was laid to rest, buried on his own

I had wanted to choose it, but was locked away

And several years had passed, before that I could lay

He’ll never be forgotten, although he is deceased

So my darling Peter, brother Rest In Peace

(9 November 1967 – 6 January 1994)

 

AMAZON/A MIGZIE TAKE

17 Comments

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  1. Impossible to like or ignore

  2. I agree. A sad book to read, but well worth it. It was very clear that Stephen really loved his brother Pete and that his death must have had a profound effect on him & to have to have read those articles with Peters abuser claiming to be a victim etc, must have been so hard.

    How great that he had a wonderful support worker who helped him to put his thoughts down on paper & who helped him get it published.

    By all accounts Peter wasn’t a bad bloke, he just went off the rails after his parents split up, as so many kids do.

    R.I.P The Wynne Brothers.

  3. Nice words man. I will look up a copy of the book

  4. A fine tribute Jimmy

  5. Very poignant. Vividly illustrates that the tragic effects of all the abuse goes way beyond the actual victims themselves. RIP Peter & Stephen and all the others who tragically couldn’t live with it any more – the true number of which will probably never been known.

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  7. Ouch!

    I saw Spotlight last night. Have you seen It?

    A team like that is needed here.

    “We call ourselves Survivors because we are still here.”

    We have learned to live with their shame and their guilt.

    RIP, all those who didn’t.

    The aftermath of child abuse -even once the perpetrator is dead – is that it’s like being trapped in an endless Tarantino film. The shock value is gone.

    You expect the worst from folk and mostly, they don’t let you down with that.

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  10. I have just bought a copy of this book through the link. Thank you.

    What a tragic story and shows how easily Mental Illness can destroy so many peoples people’s lives. And the twats in the government now want to cut mental health funding to the bone and beyond, so should we expect to see a lot more of this?

  11. I have been an RMN for 22 years, the last ten as a CPN in Stalybridge and a longtime and regular reader of this blog, although this is the first time I have left a comment.

    In my experience, stories of this type are all too common and could so easily be avoided if MH issues did not have such a stigma attached to them.

    People across all walks of life need a deeper understanding, as the ignorance and fear that any discussion about MH brings is one of the saddest and more difficult aspects to overcome a lot of the time.

    Well done for this post Jimmy, I had not heard of this book before and have just ordered a copy of ‘A MIGZIE TALE‘ through Amazon.

  12. Did you know that Peter Wynnes daughter went missing in 2004? She turned up again two weeks later thankfully.

    WREXHAM LIFE

  13. Peter was a good guy so was Simon Birley and Tony Wallace I was in Bryn estyn the Same time as them all growing up..

    1. I came to the same conclusion about those lads a few years ago. Many thanks for your insight Paul.

  14. I’ve just come across this post and this is my uncle I am Peter wynne daughter it’s heart breaking to read what a life they both had! I have been trying to find my cousin callum but having no luck hopefully one day I can meet him as he is the only family I have left on my father’s side R.I.P Dad and Uncle Steven xx

    1. Hi Lacey, many thanks for your comment. From what I am able to ascertain both Peter and Steven lived through some difficult personal circumstances, but neither of them were bad people and what happened to them was truly heartbreaking.

      If I can help you in your search in any way, I will be more than happy to do what I can.

    2. The best of luck getting back in touch with your cousin Lacey.
      We’ll all be keeping our fingers crossed for you.

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