Ancestry UK

Metropolitan Asylums Board Small Homes for 'Mental Defectives'

In the mid-1890s, the Metropolitan Asylums Board (MAB) decided to make use of the scattered homes model that was becoming popular with poor law authorities for the housing of pauper children away from the workhouse. The system placed children in family-style groups, under the care of a house 'mother' ot 'father', in ordinary suburban houses. The MAB's scheme was to adopt scattered homes for some of the 'mentally defective' children in its care as an alternative to large institutions such as its residential school at Darenth.

The premises used by the MAB for this purpose included:

Lloyd House, Lloyd Street, Islington N1January 16th, 189920 girls
12 Lloyd Street, Pentonville WC1October 18th, 19018 girls
16 (now 26) Elm Grove, Peckham SE15January 25th, 190114 boys
60-64 Kingwood Road, Fulham SW6September 17th, 190022 boys
81 Earlsfield Road, Wandsworth SW18July 17th, 190310 girls
Surrey House, 66 St Ann's Hill, Wandsworth SW18December 11th, 190316 boys

(16 Elm Grove was renumbered as number 26 in about 1909.)

Lloyd House (left) and 12 (right), Lloyd Street.

Most of the homes appear to have closed by 1910.


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.


  • Ayers, Gwendoline M. England's First State Hospitals and the Metropolitan Asylums Board (1971, Wellcome Institute of the History of Medicine)
  • Powell, Sir Allan The Metropolitan Asylums Board and its Work, 1867-1930. (1930, MAB)
  • None identified at present.