Hidden Lives Revealed. A virtual archive - children in care 1881-1981 * Image of handwritten text

Harvey Goodwin Home For Boys, Cambridge

Photograph of Harvey Goodwin Home For Boys, Cambridge

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Harvey Goodwin Home For Boys, Cambridge

Victoria Road, Cambridge, Cambridgeshire

(1896 - 1919)

This home had been running for many years when it became affiliated to the Waifs and Strays' Society in 1896. It had been established in 1847 as an Industrial Home by Harvey Goodwin, later the Dean of Ely and then the Bishop of Carlisle. More than 2,000 boys were housed there in the subsequent 49 years.

Once it was under the banner of the Society, various changes were made. The Home was renamed in honour of Harvey Goodwin, the building was renovated with the addition of new windows, and the garden was greatly expanded. The Home also started housing boys from all over the Cambridge Diocese. Previously most of the children had been taken into care exclusively from city of Cambridge itself.

The Home was certified as an industrial school for 20 boys, aged 8-14. This meant that it housed some of the most impoverished children, such as those found habitually wandering the streets. The boys received education and training within the Home, so that they could move on to paid employment. Their carpentry teacher, Mr A Cooke, taught them how to use machinery, and make simple pieces of furniture. At a Pound Day in 1909 they exhibited their work, and it was 'much admired' by local visitors.

The Scout movement was an important influence in most boys' homes, and the Harvey Goodwin Home was no exception. They had their own Honorary Scoutmaster who took them on holidays, as in 1913 when they went to Birmingham.

Difficulties with the landlord forced the Home to close in 1919 but it reopened in new premises in 1924.

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