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

Old Quebec Street Home For Girls, Marylebone

No image of this Home exists in the Children's Society Archive. If you have an image of this home please let us know at hlr@childsoc.org.uk.

Old Quebec Street Home For Girls, Marylebone

14 Quebec Street, Marylebone, London

(1883 - 1896)

The Marylebone Home was opened in 1883 with a thanksgiving service held in the nearby Quebec Chapel. The Waifs and Strays' Society was still in its infancy, and 14 Old Quebec Street became only its second home (after Dulwich). The Home was founded by two sisters who both devoted many years to their work. Miss Lee worked as the Superintendent of the Home, with Miss AM Lee as its Honorary Secretary.

The Home was certified under the Pauper Education Act to receive impoverished girls who were living in workhouses. Often these children had been orphaned from their families and were left to fend for themselves. They were sent to the Marylebone Home by Poor Law Guardians, which were local organisations who supervised the workhouses. By the end of 1883, half of the 20 girls living in the Home had been placed in this way.

In the Autumn of 1885 the Home moved to 'more convenient premises' at 123 Marylebone Road which had space for 30 girls (aged 7-12). The new address was close to the Marylebone Central School, where many of the girls started to attend. According to a school report, the Home's children were characterised by 'their eagerness to obtain punctuality, and the care they bestow on the neatness of their books'.

After school hours the girls carried out their household chores, which included needlework, darning and laundry. Miss Lee would mark the quality of their domestic work, and those who scored highly were given special privileges and took the best seats at dinnertime. Such encouragement was an important part of the girls' education, as many of them went on to work in domestic service.

In 1896 a new Home was opened nearby on Dorset Square and these premises closed.

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