Hi Claire, I was told by the UK passport office when I applied for a British passport for the eldest child. They referred me to the UKBA.
Perhaps there are two issues here.
1), that the adoption is not recognised as being compliant with the Hague Convention for the purpose of obtaining a British passport.
2) the adoption may be recognised by the UKBA as being legal in SA and perhaps enough to allow them to stay and apply for ILR as my dependants - I don't know.
This is why I am asking for advice on who to approach.
I remember the passport office mentioning that one can make a special application at an office in the north west, somewhere near LIverpool I think. I would have to state all the facts and circumstances, the importance of keeping the three children together, the eldest often plays the role of mother to our youngest (eight year old).
I also remember talking to the UKBA and being told that because I was resident in South Africa at the time of the adoption, the children would not have claim to British citizenship.
If I knew that it would solve the problem, I would see and immigration lawyer about all this. I used one in South Africa back in 1997 after being misled by the SA Home Affairs, the lawyer actually saved me money in the end.
As for documents, I have the court orders that were issued at the magistrates courts and also newer letters of adoption issued by the registrar in Pretoria.