Truro Poor Law Union

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The Truro Poor Law Union was formed on 12th May 1837.

In 1743, Lord Falmouth contributed £500 towards the erection of a workhouse on St Clement's Street for St Mary's parish. A parliamentary report of 1777 recorded that Truro's workhouse could house up to 56 inmates. The building proved inadequate, however, and in 1779 the city corporation granted St Mary's a 500-year lease on Hospital Meadow (near where Pydar Street now stands), at an annual rent of one pound, on which to build a new workhouse for eighty inmates. In April 1781, the parish vestry appointed William Brewer and his son, also named William, 'to superintend and manage the workhouse and to employ the poor placed therein'.

The St Mary's workhouse was also used by the parish of St Clement's. However, in 1829 St Clement's built a new workhouse for 150 inmates at the top of St Clement's Hill.

Kenwyn's parish workhouse stood in Kenwyn Street. In 1777, it could house 50 inmates.

The Union comprised the following Parishes:

In 1865 on creation Truro St John,Cornwall was incorporated.

Records[edit | edit source]

From 2012 the National Archive also permits online searches and record downloads for records of this Poor Law Union as a result of local volunteer efforts, see National Archives 19th Century Poor Law Union and Workhouse Records series reference MH12

Cornwall Archives and Libraries surviving records include Guardians' minute books (1857-1930); Ledgers (1857-66, 1875-1914, 1916-28)

Content Film
Overseers' accounts, poor rates, etc., 1824-1834 FHL BRITISH Film
1596595 Item 7

Websites[edit | edit source]

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