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Llanfyllin and district
The Union Workhouse
  Breaking stones before breakfast  

The main purpose of the early Victorian workhouse was to house the poorest and most unfortunate people from the surrounding parishes in the cheapest possible way.
Apart from the poor people who were forced to spend much of their lives in Llanfyllin workhouse, there was also a separate ward for travelling vagrants or tramps who would just stay for one or two nights and then move on. They had to work hard for their simple food and primitive accommodation...

22nd August
Minute book entry

This is from the Minute Book of the Llanfyllin Union for 1867 -
22nd August - "Resolved that in future all vagrants admitted Breaking stonesto the Vagrant Ward be required to break 4cwt of stones before breakfast and that the Clerk do obtain the Sanction of the Poor Law Board to such arrangement".

Small stones were always needed for maintaining the very rough local roads of the time. The stones would be broken up with large hammers until they were small enough to pass through an iron grille. "4cwt" was short for 4 hundredweight, with 1cwt being equal to 50.8 kilograms.

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I wondered why
this hotel was
so cheap !
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