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

St Hilda's Home For Girls, Marylebone

Photograph of St Hilda's Home For Girls, Marylebone

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St Hilda's Home For Girls, Marylebone

New Street, Dorset Square, Marylebone, London

(1895 - 1909)

St Hilda's was transferred to the Waifs and Strays' Society in 1895. The Home had been established some years previously as a home for 32 girls, aged 6-14. Through the care of the founder Mrs Maringay, the girls had been given training in housework and laundry and many moved on to careers in domestic service. When she passed St Hilda's over to the Society, Mrs Maringay also donated £2,645 in consols (a type of government bond). This is the equivalent of over £150,000 today and gave the Home's finances a very healthy beginning.

In 1896 St Hilda's moved to a terraced house at 194 Marylebone Road, capable of housing 25 girls (aged 6-14). The Home received many 'moving-in' presents, including some groceries from the Harvest Festival, which were donated by the Chiswick Church Institute. The new address was formally opened on 24 November, with a dedication ceremony conducted by the Bishop of Marylebone.

In 1905 St Hilda's was temporarily closed, and all the girls moved to a new home in Beckenham. St Hilda's was reopened a few months later as Marylebone Receiving Home and Training Home, for children under the age of eight. These children were new arrivals into the Society and they stayed at the Home temporarily, whilst a place in a foster home was found. The house was refurbished to cater for younger children, and two new playrooms were built including one on the roof for use in good weather.

Around this time, St Hilda's also started accommodating ill children from countryside homes, who needed to come to London for medical treatment. Most of these children stayed at St Hilda's for just a few weeks before returning to their previous home.

In 1909 the receiving home in Clapham Common (St Elizabeth's) began housing girls of all ages, and St Hilda's was closed.

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