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Rhayader
Care of the poor
 
  The first inmates  
 

At long last the arrangements for the new workhouse were complete. In August 1879 the system of outdoor relief was stopped for a number of paupers, and they were required to leave their homes and present themselves at the workhouse.
Once there they lost contact with family and friends in the outside world, and were locked in until they could support themselves.

Many elderly people spent the last years of their lives in the workhouse. Old couples who might have lived together for 50 years were separated !
The list below records the first inmates taken into the workhouse and where they came from.

Workhouse men
  List of paupers
 

These first inmates were:-
"John Cleaton (no family) of Llanyre; Elizabeth Williams (and 3 children) of Abbey Cwmhir; Margaret Lewis (and 1 child) of Rhayader; Edward Hughes (no family), Margaret Jane Lewis (& 2 children), Margaret Meredith (and 1 child), Sarah Lewis (and 1 child), Elizabeth Wilding (and 4 children), Elizabeth Lewis (and 2 children) all of Saint Harmon; Thomas Weale (no family) of Llanyre; Mary Owen (at present in Knighton workhouse) of Nantmel"

It must have been a terrible change in the lives of all of them, especially the unfortunate children. .

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