The Minister for Children has said there may be circumstances under which late applications to the Redress Board may be considered from survivors of institutional abuse now living in Britain.

Barry Andrews was speaking after meeting survivors' groups in London today.

It is estimated that up to a third of all survivors of institutional abuse over the past 50 years may be living in Britain.

Survivors' groups asked Mr Andrews not to end his Department's funding for British-based outreach services, as Government funding is due to end in December.

Mr Andrews said the Government did have a responsibility to respond to the needs of survivors now living in Britain, but did not give any commitment to further funding.

Since the publicity surrounding the Ryan Report, counselling services across Britain have seen hundreds of potential new applicants to the Redress Board.

The minister said survivors resident in Britain, who had not previously been aware of the existence of the Redress Board because they were not in an Irish community, may fit into special circumstances outlined in legislation.

Mr Andrews said the issue would have to be considered again in Government.