Macgregor House Home for Working Boys, London
In 1886, Macgregor House, a home for working boys, was opened at 9 Wine Office Court, Fleet Street, London EC4. The home accommodated 30 boys aged 13 to 17 years of age. Macgregor House was one of a number of such establishments run by the Homes for Working Homes in London (HWBL), a charitable organisation founded in 1870 by three old school friends — Tom Pelham, Arthur Kinnaird and Quintin Hogg. The home was 'for boys employed in situations and earning wages, who are without homes or friends to care for them.' Each boy made a weekly payment for his board and lodging — in the mid-1890s, this comprised a flat rate of 4s. 6d. for food, and if earning over 6s. a week also paid 2d. in the shilling of his wages for lodging.
At the home, a library, reading room and gymnasium were provided free. Each boy had to be be home by 9.30 p.m., attend some place of worship on Sunday and, on some nights in the week, classes for instruction. Temporary assistance was given to inmates out of work to enable them to maintain themselves until they found employment.
On July 9th, 1915, the establishment was accredited to operate as an Auxiliary Home, allowing it to accommodate boys licensed out from Certified Industrial Schools.
In July, 1920, the home was relocated to 127 Tulse Hill, Streatham, London SW2, where up to 35 boys could be accommodated. Its Auxiliary Home certification continued at the new premises but was resigned in November of the same year, when it reverted to its original role. After the Second World War, the home became a probation hostel for boys aged 16 to 19.
In 1967, HWBL merged with another charity, the Fellowship of St Christopher, to form the St Christopher's Fellowship. The Tulse Hill hostel continued in use under the new management.
Neither of the Macgregor House premises survives.
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- None identfied at present — any information welcome.
- Higginbotham, Peter Children's Homes: A History of Institutional Care for Britain s Young (2017, Pen & Sword)
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