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Alice: Madness Returns London
Houndsditch Home for Wayward Youth
Houndsditch Home for Wayward Youth
Also known as Houndsditch Home and Refuge for Wayward Youth[1]
Location Moorfields, London
First appearance Chapter 1
Series Alice: Madness Returns
Location on map
London map

The Houndsditch Home for Wayward Youth is a shelter in London's East End for unfortunate children, especially orphans. It was run by Dr. Angus Bumby until his death.[2] It was where Alice Liddell lived after being released in Rutledge Asylum.[1]

Houndsditch Home posed to be a completely normal orphanage and its head, Bumby, was deemed to be a "respectable social architect and scientist."[3]

However, Bumby had a much darker secret – he used his hypnotherapy skills to make the children forget who they were and turn them into mindless prostitutes to sell for London's pedophiles who engage in the act.[4] Children ready for sale were marked with names and number tags, and then put out into the street with a seller to attract buyers.[5]


Release from Rutledge Asylum[]

After a decade of treatment in Rutledge Asylum, Alice was deemed sane enough by the staff to be released.[1] Pris Witless eventually found Alice a job and home at Houndsditch, where Alice worked as a maid to keep her off the streets. While working in the orphanage, Alice also received hypnotherapy sessions from Doctor Bumby, unknowingly allowing him to destroy her Wonderland and erase her memories of the fire.[2]

Alice: Madness Returns[]

Alice in a therapy session with Bumby

Alice trying to forget her memories.

Despite Bumby's efforts to make Alice forget about the fire, her tenacity kept her from forgetting her memories and fantasies of Wonderland.[3] After one of their sessions was over, Bumby tasked Alice to retrieve the pills from their High Street chemist while he interviewed Charlie. Along the way, she got sidetracked by a white cat and eventually fell into hallucinations before arriving in Wonderland again.[2]

Her constant returns to Wonderland slowly made her realize who was responsible for the fire that killed her family and for destroying her Wonderland.[6] After confronting Bumby at the Moorgate Station, she took the key to Lizzie's room from his hand and killed him by pushing him in front of an incoming train.[3]

It is unknown what happened to Houndsditch Home after Bumby's death. However, Alice would presumably commit to freeing the orphans at Houndsditch. Alice left Houndsditch and found another job at the Royal Opera House.


The Houndsditch home is a two-story formal brick building, similar in style to structures from the late eighteenth to early nineteenth century. It is solid and tall in construction, yet somewhat small for the number of children it houses. It is attached to similar buildings on both sides. From the outside, it is surrounded by a tall iron fence with no front garden, with a copper sign clearly reading the name of the home and the name of Doctor Bumby on the front.

Boy's dorm

The boy's dorm.

On the inside, the building is spacious with almost all rooms being quite large, yet extremely messy and in disrepair. The first floor has the lobby, which has a portrait of Doctor Bumby with several of the orphaned children, and Alice's room. The second floor has the dorms, as well as Bumby's office.

The children sleep in two separate dorms, one for the girls and the other for the boys. The boy's dorm has about four bunk beds, while the girl's dorm has two bunk beds and one single bed. These rooms tend to be scattered with discarded pieces of clothing and toys, similar to the hallways and the lobby, which is instead covered in books. Alice is the only person not to share a bedroom, presumably other than Bumby; however, Alice's room is also the smallest and comparably tidier than the other dorms.


Portrait of Bumby with the orphans in Houndsditch

Bumby with the orphans.

Houndsditch orphans

Orphans playing with a dollhouse.

  • The orphanage is most likely named after Houndsditch, a street in London just off Whitechapel High Street, which marks the route of an old ditch that ran outside a part of the London Wall, renowned or being used as a site for disposing of waste and, particularly, deceased dogs.
  • The workshop of the Dollmaker seems to be its Wonderland incarnation.
  • During the intro, there are several points of interest which could serve as foreshadowing:
    • There is a dead goldfish in a fish bowl on a shelf, hinting that something is amiss about the orphanage. Although it is possible it recently died, no one seems to have noticed or cared to do anything about it, the bowl now murky. This could also be foreshadowing the Deluded Depths.
    • There is a naked doll placed on a bed with its leg ripped off. Next to it is a toy train, which may symbolize the Infernal Train. The doll has black hair which does not look that different from Alice's.
    • A frame of stitched text outside Alice's room says EARN YOUR KEEP, which could be seen as rather degrading. It could also be viewed as mind control, trying to convince the children they must work and be useful, or else they don't deserve basic shelter and care. It may be trying to get them into a "slave-like" mindset trying to appease Bumby.
    • There is a painting of Doctor Bumby surrounded by very lost-looking orphans with numbers. A sane adult would ask the painter to not paint the numbers because it looks strange and dehumanizing.
    • The dollhouse the orphans were playing with in the lobby looks exactly similar to the houses present during the Dollhouse domain.
  • The Umbrella can be seen propped against the wall in Alice's bedroom.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Electronic Arts (2011-05-22). Alice: Madness Returns Storybook (v1.0). Scene: Newspaper articles.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Spicy Horse (2011-06-14). Alice: Madness Returns. (Electronic Arts). Scene: Houndsditch Home. Level: Chapter 1: Hatter's Domain.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Spicy Horse (2011-06-14). Alice: Madness Returns. (Electronic Arts). Scene: The End. Level: Chapter 6: Infernal Train.
  4. Spicy Horse (2011-06-14). Alice: Madness Returns. (Electronic Arts). Scene: Whitechapel. Level: Chapter 6: Infernal Train.
  5. Spicy Horse (2011-06-14). Alice: Madness Returns. (Electronic Arts). Scene: Threadneedle Street. Level: Chapter 3: Oriental Grove.
  6. Throughout Alice: Madness Returns