Ancestry UK

Moorfield Orphanage, Preston, Lancashire

The Moorfield Orphanage for Roman Catholic Girls was opened in 1905 at Ribbleton Avenue, Preston. It occupied an existing house, known as Moorfields, set in five acres of grounds. The new establishment effectively replaced the facility previously provided by the St Joseph's Orphanage, which had become a hospital. Moorfield was run by nuns from the Daughters of Wisdom. In 1912, the superintendent was Sister Louise Angélique.

On 6th September, 1909, Moorfield was formally accredited as a Certified School, allowing it to receive girls boarded out by the workhouse authorities. The premises could accommodate up to 60 girls aged from 2 to 16 years, with a charge of between 5 and 6 shillings a week being made for each inamte. Unions making use of the Orphanage included Preston, Toxteth Park, Liverpool, Chorley, Bradford, Ormskirk and Paddington.

The School site is shown on the 1912 map below.

Moorfield Orphanage site, Preston, c.1912.

Girls at the Moorfield were instructed in needlework and laundry work, with most eventually entering domestic service.

The buildings no longer survive the modern housing of Arnold Close now covers the site.


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  • Caritas Care (formerly Catholic Caring Services), 218 Tulketh Road, Ashton on Ribble, Preston, Lancashire, PR2 1ES.


  • Van der Veen, Annemiek, and Verhoeven, Dolly We Agreed to be Different: Sisters of Charity of Our Lady Mother of Mercy 1960-2000 (2005)