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Joan Templeman Richard Branson



Templeman miscarries with the couple’s first child, Clare Sarah, before the couple are married. The baby is born after Templeman suffers what she thinks is appendicitis on holiday in Inverness. The baby is taken from them when she dies of respiratory failure at Raigmore Hospital, and along with other still-born babies in an unmarked grave in the Inverness’s Tomnahurich Cemetery. The grave remains unmarked until 1993 when a local support group erected a plaque for the ‘lost babies’. Richard and Joan hold a private service for the baby and put up a plaque in her name in the local Catholic church. Branson:

Joan thought she had an attack of appendicitis and they operated on her and found it was a false alarm. But it brought on early labour. In those days, the incubator system wasn’t as good as now and we were told that because the baby was 25 weeks, it constituted a miscarriage, therefore we couldn’t have a proper burial.

Although we were told our baby was technically a miscarriage, I was able to hold her hand as she lay in an incubator and it was very human. These are the kind of memories I will keep in my mind forever.