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Thread: Poor Law

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    Default Poor Law

    I know a little about Poor Law and Parish Relief, but whilst research something I came across this article from 1830 and have a couple of questions that people might be able to answer:




    Would the outcome of the case be that the grandfather not have been able to have the children live with him?

    These are small rural parishes that didn't have alms houses let alone workhouses, so what would the losing parish have done with the orphaned children?

    I know that the parishes were all trying to avoid financial liability for orphans etc., but it baffles me where someone is apparently offering them a home the authorities are saying no.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Megan Roberts View Post
    I know a little about Poor Law and Parish Relief, but whilst research something I came across this article from 1830 and have a couple of questions that people might be able to answer:


    snipped image

    Would the outcome of the case be that the grandfather not have been able to have the children live with him?
    Highly unlikely as the article does not mention that the grandfather was able to support the children only that he had rented property that would give him settlement rights.

    It also does not mention whether the grandfather was a maternal grandfather or paternal grandfather. If he was the children’s paternal grandfather he had no connection with them in law.

    Quote Originally Posted by Megan Roberts View Post
    These are small rural parishes that didn't have alms houses let alone workhouses, so what would the losing parish have done with the orphaned children?
    1830 was decades before the “New” poor law of 1834 which encouraged parishes to pool resources and form “unions” to provide workhouses etc.
    The poor were still dealt with under the old poor laws which included the 1601 Act and the later 1723 Knatchbull’s Act (Workhouse test Act), 1782 Gilbert’s Act and the rural 1792 Speenhamland Act.

    Under the 1723 Act the grandfather could have been paid a weekly amount by the parish to look after the children but this was an expensive system for the parish and by the 1830s had fallen out of favour.

    The 1782 Act encouraged orphans to be housed in workhouses but this system quickly saw a large increase in the poor rate and the wealthy landowners who had to pay the increased rates opposed the system. This encouraged parishes to try to avoid responsibility for the sick, and children by shipping them to other parishes when possible.


    Quote Originally Posted by Megan Roberts View Post
    I know that the parishes were all trying to avoid financial liability for orphans etc., but it baffles me where someone is apparently offering them a home the authorities are saying no.
    It was all about costs and settlement, if they accepted the situation and allowed the grandfather to house the children they would be liable to pay for their upkeep. If the grandfather died or became ill before the children were of age the parish would not be able to get rid of them.
    Better to move the problem on when it was a simple matter than to possibly store up trouble for later.
    The stark reality of results of the various poor laws.
    Cheers
    Guy
    As we have gained from the past, we owe the future a debt, which we pay by sharing today.

  3. The Following 4 Users Say Thank You to Guy Etchells For This Useful Post:

    fullscott (05-10-2018), Megan Roberts (04-10-2018), Pam Downes (04-10-2018), Sandyhall (04-10-2018)

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