Victorian Powys for primary  schools
Powys Digital History Project
Crickhowell and district
The workhouse
  Small coffins, four shillings each...  

There are many deaths mentioned in the Crickhowell Union workhouse records, for funeral expenses were part of the routine budgeting approved by the Board of Guardians during their regular meetings.
Local suppliers quoted prices for the goods and services needed by the workhouse, and these included the supply of coffins...

5th January
Minute Book entry
Most Victorian workhouses usually held many widows or abandoned mothers with children, and also unmarried mothers with babies. With poor food and the risk of infectious diseases it is not surprising that many young children died there.
  "William Greenaway's tender for coffins for the parishes of Llangattock and Llanelly viz under 5 years of age 4 shillings, 5 to 12 seven shillings and sixpence, above 12 - 13 shillings, be accepted".
Sadly, coffins for very young children were needed quite often, as this typical example of a claim for funeral expenses from the workhouse records shows...
5th April
Minute Book entry "The Relieving Officer having paid the following sums for the funeral expences of Paupers -
Fifteen shillings for Walter Jones' child..."

"... Nineteen shillings and six pence for Edward Weale's child, Llangattock Parish, and Eighteen shillings for John Jones' child, Llanelly Parish..."
The cost of the coffins and the funerals of these poor people were charged to the Poor Rate paid by residents of their home parishes.
Many workhouse children who survived were packed off to learn a trade at a young age, as you can see on the next page...

Bound to learn, for seven years...


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