From Gruel to Gourmet: The Story of Fegan's Homes for Boys in Stony Stratford
The founder's story:
Mr. James William Condell Fegan

The History of the Building
The Life and Times of Mr. Fegan
Daily life at Fegan's Homes
Christmas for Fegan's Boys
Life on the training farm, Goudhurst
Moving On - life for the boys after Fegan's
Fegan's Boys - where are they now?
Contacting Fegan's Homes
Useful Links
Fegan's Homes for Boys took the name of the founder. He was, by all accounts, an extra-ordinary man who was totally committed to his ideals.
James William Condell Fegan was born on the 27th April 1852. He was the youngest of four children born to James and Anne Fegan. His father worked at the Ordnance Survey office in Southampton, England.

He was brought up in a religious family, which coloured his entire life. Although James Fegan didn’t belong to any particular church, he was well known for his beliefs. His mother taught him at home until the age of ten. His hobbies and interests were mainly outdoor pursuits, such as football, cricket and fishing.
James Fegan in 1891 at the age of 39
In 1869 the Fegan family moved to London, and on his thirteenth birthday James entered the city of London school. After four years James left the school and went to work for a firm of colonial brokers. As young man, he had a strange experience while sitting in his room one evening he had a strong need to turn to god. It was almost from this moment that he devoted his time and energy to spreading his religious beliefs.
It was while out one evening preaching that Fegan noticed a group of dirty, scantily dressed and barefooted boys sitting on a kerb near to where he was standing. As the boys got up to leave, Fegan felt compelled to follow them, until they turned down a narrow alley and entered a shabby building. It had the name The Ragged School. He himself entered that building and was greeted by array of faces, all asking him to teach them. So James Fegan had his first contact with the first of a great many poor boys whom he would spend his life helping. He taught the boys and even spent Sunday evenings working with them. But soon his health started to suffer; coping with the hustle and bustle of commercial life and then devoting most evenings working with the boys, his health deteriorated and went to the seaside resort of Bognor Regis to re-couperate. It was whilst in Bognor that James helped his first boy to find a home. That boy's name was Tom Hammond. He brought the boy back to London and looked after him until he could organise a place in an institution. Here the boy spent eighteen months before being sent to Canada to start a new life.
Tom Hammond - reputed to be the first ever "Fegan Boy"