St Edith's Orphanage (Hallam Hall), Clevedon, Somerset
St Edith's Orphanage was established in around 1890 in a house known as Hallam Hall on Dial Hill, Clevedon. The property had originally been built in 1874 for use as a private boys' boarding school.
The Home was run by the Community of the Sisters of the Church, an Anglican sisterhood of nuns, sometimes referred to as the Kilburn Order, in conjunction with the Church Extension Association, who operated a number of other institutions.
The stated object of the Association's homes was to help 'those girls and boys who are literally without a friend in the world.' In practice, this comprised girls who had lost both parents, had no other relatives capable of supporting them, and had no-one else willing to fund their maintenance at a paying orphanage. Wherever possible, the orphanage took members of the same family. St Edith's could accommodate up to 42 children.
St Edith's closed in January 1975. The building has now been converted to flats.
Note: many repositories impose a closure period of up to 100 years for records identifying individuals. Before travelling a long distance, always check that the records you want to consult will be available.
- Community of the Sisters of the Church holds records for homes run by the Order. Enquiries should be directed to: Community Archivist, St Michael's Convent, Vicarage Way, Gerrards Cross, Bucks SL9 8 AT. Email firstname.lastname@example.org. (Note: no records are held for individual convalescent children for either St Mary's Convalescent Home, Thanet, Kent, or the Abraham Ormerod Convalescent Home, Lytham St Anne's.)
- Anonymous, A Valiant Victorian: The Life and Times of Mother Emily Ayckbowm 1830-1900 of the Community of the Sisters of the Church (1964, A. R. Mowbray & Co. Ltd., London)
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