Catherington, Hampshire

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Up to 1834

A parliamentary report of 1777 recorded a parish workhouse in operation at Catherington for up to 30 inmates.

A row of cottages at Finchdean was once a local poorhouse.

Finchdean former poorhouse, 2001.
© Peter Higginbotham.

After 1834

Catherington Poor Law Union was officially formed on 6th April 1835. Its operation was overseen by an elected Board of Guardians, 9 in number, representing its 5 constituent parishes as listed below (figures in brackets indicate numbers of Guardians if more than one):

Hampshire: Blendworth, Chalton, Clanfield, Catherington (4), Idsworth (2).
Later Addition: Waterloo (from 1910).

The population falling within the union at the 1831 census had been 1,950 — ranging from Clanfield (population 219) to Catherington itself (944). In terms of its (1831) population, Catherington was probably the smallest union in England. The average annual poor-rate expenditure for the period 1831-34 had been £2,796 or £1.8s.8d. per head of the population.

A new Catherington Union workhouse was erected in 1835 in Horndean. Intended to accommodate 80 inmates, the Poor Law Commissioners authorized the sum of £1,050 on its construction. The red-brick building had a T-shaped layout. The workhouse location and layout are shown on the 1909 map below.

Catherington workhouse site, 1909.
©Hampshire Library & Information Service.

Catherington workhouse (right of picture) from the west, c.1977.
©Hampshire Library & Information Service.

After the official end of the workhouse system in 1930, the site was sold off. A factory later operated on the site but the workhouses buildings were demolished in 1982. All that remains is is a small single-storey structure at the western end of the former workhouse site.

Catherington from the west, 2001.
© Peter Higginbotham.




Note: many repositories impose a closure period of up to 100 years for records identifying individuals.

  • Hampshire Record Office, Sussex Street, Winchester SO23 8TH. Very few records survive. Holdings include Guardians' minute books (1900-1929).


  • None.


  • None.

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