Sevenoaks Poor Law Union, Kent Genealogy

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History[edit | edit source]

For more information on the history of the workhouse, see Peter Higginbotham's web site: Sevenoaks Workhouse

Parish workhouses existed at

Brasted, Kent, Chevening, Kent, Chiddingstone, Kent, Cowden, Kent, Edenbridge, Kent sometimes spelled Eaton Bridge, Halstead, Kent,Kemsing, Kent Otford, KentSevenoaks, Kent,Sundridge, Kent sometimes spelled Sundrish , and Westerham, Kent.

The Sevenoaks Poor Law Union was formed on 14th April 1835. The existing workhouse for Sevenoaks was at St John's Hill and the new Union ignored the Poor Law Commissioner's recommendation to build a new Union workhouse and chose rather to enlarge the existing workhouse at St John's Hill. This was to prove inadequate and was subject of criticism by the Poor Law Commissioners and the Union was forced to change it's decision and transfer to build a new Union Workhouse at Sundridge which was built in 1843.

The Sundridge site later transferred on cessation of the Poor Law Union to the National Health Service from 1948 as Sundridge Hospital after a prior period as an institution for the mentally ill. Due to Health Srvice cutbacks in the 1980's the premises were sold in the 1990's and were redeveloped as private residential housing (Birchfield House).

The Union also operated a Childrens Home called Rock House and situated at Chipstead.

Constituent Parishes[edit | edit source]

Brasted, Kent Chevening, Kent Chiddingstone, Kent Cowden, Kent Edenbridge, Kent Halstead, Kent Hever, Kent Ide Hill, Kent Kemsing, Kent Leigh, Kent Mark Beech, Kent Otford, Kent Penshurst, Kent Riverhead, Kent Seal, Kent Sevenoaks, Kent Sevenoaks Weald, Kent Shoreham, Kent Sundridge, Kent Westerham, Kent

Records[edit | edit source]

See England, Kent, Workhouse Records - FamilySearch Historical Records

Original records are held at Kent History and Library Centre James Whatman Way, Maidstone, Kent see Kent Archives which also enables a search of the catalogue for the Union record series.