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The Orphans' Home, Norwich

A group of women Quakers, including the author Amelia Opie, founded the Orphans' Home in Norwich on 30 November 1844.

It was originally in Pottergate and in 1870 moved to premises in Chapelfield East, which had previously been The Bowling Green Hotel.

The home accommodated 30 children and it appears it only every catered for girls. It was entirely unsectarian, although the girls usually attended St Mary's Chapel. 

The Objects and Rules of 1896 state:

“The object is to provide a home for girls, destitute children of married parents, who are both dead; and to educate and train them for domestic service, or some other means of supporting themselves respectably and becoming useful members of society.”

On 8 July 1931, the education and management committee of the Anguish's Boys' Foundation and the Anguish's Girls' Hospital recommended approval of proposals made by the trustees and management committee of the Orphans' Home.

These proposals were for all of their assets and liabilities to be transferred to Anguish's School of Housecraft.

The clerk reported to the Anguish trustees on 20 January 1932 that the sale for £1,300 of the Orphans' Home, Chapel Field, had been approved.

The clerk also reported that some of the children from the Orphans' Home had been transferred to the Girls' Hospital School.

The Orphans' Home had been kept open for a short time however, because one of the girls at the Hospital School had been ill with diphtheria.

On 19 October 1932, the clerk finally reported that the sale of the Orphans' Home had been completed and the money had been invested in stock.

Sources at the Norfolk Record Office (NRO)

Document references are given in brackets:

  • James Hooper, Norwich Charities: Short Sketches of their Origin and History (Norwich, 1898) pp193-8. Available on the searchroom shelves.
  • Trustees of Anguish's Boys' Foundation and Anguish's Girls' Hospital minute book, 1925-34 (N/CCH 127 especially pp352-343, 369-370, 379-383, 412)
  • Orphans' Home admission register, 1891-1921 (N/CCH 185)
  • Orphans' Home admission register, 1923-30 (N/CCH 186)
  • Medical certificates and related papers found loosely inserted in N/CCH 185 (N/CCH 187)