The preliminary inquiry was undertaken by a senior social worker with the Western Health Board. His brief was to develop an assessment of the allegations being made regarding the care received by children in Goldenbridge in the 1950s and 1960s. Mr Crowley gathered information from the following sources: Transcript of the Gay Byrne interview with Ms Christine Buckley in 1993. A meeting with Mr Louis Lentin, the producer of the programme that was going to shown on RTE. A meeting with a former resident of Goldenbridge. Meeting with Sr Alida. Meeting with Sr Venetia. • Report and feedback from Sr Bettina17 on her interviews with former residents.
The Congregation have asked the Investigation Committee to note the limitations of the Crowley report, which they identify as being four-fold: (1)The report was based on interviews with a small number of complainants; with Srs Alida and Venetia; and with Louis Lentin (producer of ‘Dear Daughter’). (2)There was little, if any, questioning of the complainants on the details of complaints. (3)There are no notes, transcripts or tapes of the interviews and there is therefore some difficulty in assessing precisely what was said. ‘For example, Sr Alida explained to the Committee that she had always had problems with the account in the report of what she had said’ (emphasis added). [This is factually incorrect. Sr Alida did not allege that she was misquoted by Mr Crowley but did make a comment about the report as a whole: I have to say that......from the very beginning I was quite unhappy with Mr Crowley’s report.] Sr Venetia never had an opportunity to give evidence to the Investigation Committee either in general or specifically in relation to the Crowley Report. (4)The information-gathering exercise was conducted very quickly and the conclusions were intended to be preliminary in nature. The exercise was intended to be a first step in a process, rather than a final conclusion.