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Sunday 20 May 2018

Appeal to trace family of baby abandoned outside London shop in 1943

Mr Peter (73) grew up in England but a DNA test showed that he has 45pc Irish genes with a smaller percentage showing heritage from Scotland and other countries.
Mr Peter (73) grew up in England but a DNA test showed that he has 45pc Irish genes with a smaller percentage showing heritage from Scotland and other countries.

Alan O'Keeffe

A woman whose father was abandoned as a two-week-old baby has appealed for help to identify his relatives.

Lorraine Ball (48) said her father was found outside a shop in Oxford Street in London on October 20, 1943, and he does not know who his parents are.

As the shop was named Peter Robinson's, the baby was named Robin Peter.

Mr Peter (73) grew up in England but a DNA test showed that he has 45pc Irish genes with a smaller percentage showing heritage from Scotland and other countries.

His daughter Lorraine launched an appeal on Ryan Tubridy's show on RTÉ Radio One yesterday hoping someone might come forward with clues about the identity of Mr Peter's parents.

She told the Irish Independent last night that nine people had made contact after the radio show but she does not know yet if any of the contacts will provide the vital breakthrough.

Robin Peter was left as a baby outside an Oxford Street store
Robin Peter was left as a baby outside an Oxford Street store

"It has always been ridiculously difficult for my father to find out anything because there was no birth certificate, no police files discovered about him being a foundling, and not even newspaper cuttings about the finding of a baby in Oxford Street," she said.

Mr Peter was adopted aged four by a couple. He put himself through university as a mature student and became an architect. He continues to live in London.

A DNA expert employed by the family checked global databases and discovered that a woman of Scottish descent in New York City is a third cousin of Mr Peter.

The expert also came up with a name Thomas Patrick Cunningham, born in Co Offaly in 1864, as being likely to be one of his ancestors.

"My dad has no bad feelings against his mother or original family. He is not interested in any recrimination. We would all just love know his heritage," she said.

They are inviting people to make contact through Facebook on the Robin's Foundling Story page.

Irish Independent

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