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Tiverton Poor Law Union and Workhouse

Tiverton Union Workhouse

1851 census - HO/107/1889             Folio 354     Page 1

Joseph Collard - Master (occupation also listed as Accountant)
Eliza Collard - Matron

Tiverton Union - White Directory

comprises 27 parishes, an area of 171 sq miles & in 1841 contained 32,499 inhabitants. Their total average annual expenditure on the poor, during the 3 years preceding the formation of the Union, was 18,215. In 1838, their expenditure was 14,248, & in 1840 16,764.19s. 

The Union Workhouse was built on the site of the old workhouse at Tiverton Town End in 1836/7, at a cost of 6000 & is a commodious stone building with accommodations for 300 paupers. 4 Guardians are elected for Tiverton, 3 for Cullompton, 2 each for Halberton, Silverton, Thorverton, & Uffculm, & 1 for each of the other parishes. This Union, with that of Dulverton in Somerset, forms a district of which T L T Rendell Esq is Supt.Registrar. He is also clerk of Tiverton Union, & the Relieving Officers are John Gath of Tiverton, Edwin Druller of Brampton, & Henry Doble of Uffculm. 13 surgeons are employed by the Union, & Joseph & Mrs Collard are master & matron of the Workhouse.
Source: White Directory 1850 p.303
Submitted by Betty Longbottom

Silverton Workhouse
The following gives some details of the Silverton Workhouse and the surrounding buildings:

To the north of the junction of Fore Street with King Street (Back Lane) and Parsonage Lane, is the High Street (High Bullen). Beyond the Lamb Inn, on the left is the site of the workhouse and almshouses originally built with money from an endowment given by the family of Bishop Cotton, Bishop of Exeter and Rector of Silverton.

On the left of the building was a prison for the punishment of those who could but would not work.

The workhouse was built as stipulated in the Act which recommended "hospitals to be built in parishes as homes for the infirm and of houses of industry". The almshouses were known as "Cotton's Row".

Prior to 1786 a fire had decimated Cottons Row, and a 70 year lease was granted at a yearly rent of 10/- in consideration of "a building to be erected upon the demised premises, which are described as consisting of all those old walls and ruins, theretofore two dwelling houses, a
bakehouse, outhouses, linhays, courtlage and garden, then late destroyed by fire; and the leases covenanted to erect upon the premises a good and substantial building, to repair the premises during the term, to insure them, and to rebuild them in case of their being destroyed by fire".
The property then consisted of:
(1)  The above house and garden,
(2)  an orchard called Dog's Close,
(3)  the large building used as the Parish Workhouse. 
It is not recorded whether the Workhouse was part of the property originally conveyed, or if it was subsequently built by the Parish on a part of the land derived from the donation.
(4)  a cottage called the bakehouse.
A further fire in 1893 burnt the almshouses and several cottages in their vicinity to the ground. The present red brick cottages were built on part of the site, and on the south side can be seen a crest and the rebuilding date of 1902.


Workhouses, List of those visited in 1867 With Name of the Workhouse and numbers of  insane, idiotic, and imbecile inmates.
Tiverton 4 2 6
Source: 22nd Report of the Commissioners in Lunacy to the Lord Chancellor. Submitted by Alan Longbottom.

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Page last updated 12 March, 2008 by Rossbret