Among the children admitted to West Stowell House have been some who were known to have brain damage, and many others who were suspected of having brain abnormality, but in most cases the specific nature of the damage, or weakness, was not known. For example, children later assessed as having normal sight and hearing had often been thought at one stage to be blind or deaf. There were also some cases where there was no manifest organic condition and no indica­ tion of one, and yet the extreme nature of the child’s inaccessibility, his lack of speech and manneristic behaviour, suggested that his condition was unlikely to be purely reactive.