East Riding of Yorkshire County Council Homes
In 1930, the Boards of Guardians, who had administered the poor relief system in England and Wales since 1834, were abolished and their responsibilities were taken over by county and county borough councils. Each council set up a Public Assistance Committee to oversee its new duties, which included the operation of the various children's establishments previously run by the poor law unions in each area.
The East Riding County Council's Public Assistance Committee took over the work previously carried out by eight Poor Law unions, although not all of these had operated their own children's homes. After reviewing the stock of accommodation it had inherited, the council initially began operating with eight homes:
|Westwood House, Westwood, Beverley||48|
|Hoggard House, High Street, Bridlington||12|
|Hartendale, South Back Lane, Bridlington||12|
|Firthholme, Long Lane, Bridlington||9|
|Brookville, Bridge Street, Driffield||12|
|42-43 Victoria Road, Driffield||20|
|Northern House, Scarborough Road, Driffield||9|
|Fair View (or Fairview), Pocklington||12|
By 1933, two new homes had been opened at 13 and 17 Northgate, Cottingham, each housing ten children. The following year, Fair View had been closed. In 1936, a home eleven children was opened at 14 Railway Street, Beverley. Two new homes, Eastholme and Westholme, were opened at Brandesburton in 1937, one for twelve boys, the other for twelve girls. In the same year, Westwood House at Beverley was closed. By 1938, two of the Bridlington homes, Hoggard House and Firthholme, had also closed. In 1934, the homes at 42-43 Victoria Road, Driffield, relocated (or perhaps were renumbered as) 44-45 Victoria Road. Number 44 was assigned to the girls and 45 to the boys, with Northern House being used for infants. Perhaps no longer deemed safe, the homes at Cottingham, located on the outskirts of Hull, had closed in 1942 but were back in use in 1944. The Brandesburton homes, fifteen miles to the north of Hull, also closed in 1942, only re-opening after the war.
In 1947, a new 10-bed home with was in operation at St John's Avenue, Bridlington. There were now also children's hostels at Cardigan Road, Bridlington, and Fulford Lodge, Fulford, near York, each providing 15 places. The council's homes at this date are listed below:
|14 Railway Street, Beverley||12|
|117 Cardigan Road, Bridlington||15|
|Hartendale, South Back Lane, Bridlington||14|
|St John's Avenue, Bridlington||10|
|13 Northgate, Cottingham||11|
|17 Northgate, Cottingham||12|
|44 Victoria Road, Driffield||14|
|45 Victoria Road, Driffield||24|
|Northern House, Scarborough Road, Driffield||9|
|Fulford Lodge, Fulford, York||15|
Following the passing of the 1948 Children Act, councils were required to provide care services for all needy children in their area, especially those who lacked a normal family home. In common with other local authorities, the council established a new Children's Committee, whose responsibilities had previously been spread across separate Health, Education and Public Assistance Committees. In addition to its existing accommodation, a residential nursery with 20 places was opened at Burlington House, Marton Road, Bridlington ‐ part of the former workhouse site.
By 1959, the homes at Brandesburton and Cottingham, those at Driffield except Northern House, and St John's Avenue, Bridlington, had been closed. New homes had been established by that date at St Leonards, The Promenade, Withernsea; Ravenswood, Cliff Road, Hornsea; and Manor Way (Cayley Road), Anlaby. A nursery known as the Parker Home was opened at 21 Marton Road, Bridlington;
Following the local government reorganisation that took place in 1974, the East Riding County Council was abolished, with most of its area being incorporated into the new county of Humberside. The Humberside County Council took over the management of children's homes previously run by the East Riding County Council.
The new county, which also incorporated parts of northern Lincolnshire, proved less than popular with many of its residents. A further reorganisation in 1996, divided the area into a number of separate authorities, including a reseurrected East Riding of Yorkshire.
Composite list of children's establishments run (at some time in their history) by East Riding of Yorkshire County Council.
- 99 Manor Way / Cayley Road, Anlaby
- 14 Railway Street, Beverley
- 65-69 Keldgate, Beverley
- Westwood House, Westwood, Beverley
- Home for Boys, Eastholme, Frodingham Road, Brandesburton
- Home for Girls, Westholme, Frodingham Road, Brandesburton
- Hostel, 117 Cardigan Road, Bridlington
- Hoggard House, 19 High Street, Bridlington
- The Parker Home Nursery, 21 Marton Road, Bridlington
- Hartendale House, 27 South Back Lane, Bridlington
- Firthholme, Long Lane, Bridlington
- Mother and Babies Hostel, 'The Avenue' Hospital, Westgate, Bridlington
- 13 Northgate, Cottingham
- 17 Northgate, Cottingham
- Brookville, 1 Bridge Street, Driffield
- 42-43 Victoria Road, Driffield
- Home for Girls, 44 Victoria Road, Driffield
- Kindergarten, 45 Victoria Road, Driffield
- 8 Beck Side, Driffield
- Home for Boys, Northern House, Scarborough Road, Driffield
- Ravenswood, 12 Cliff Road, Hornsea
- Ivy Lodge, 5 Eastgate, Hornsea
- Yorkshire Roman Catholic Reformatory for Boys /St William's School, Market Weighton
- The Croft, 83 Kilnwick Road, Pocklington
- Fair View, The Mile, Pocklington
- St Leonards, 6 The Promenade, Withernsea
- Fulford Lodge, 1 Heslington Lane, Fulford, York
The involvement of local authorities in the running of children's homes dates from 1930, when they took over the running of the poor relief system previously administered by Boards of Guardians. Surviving records for council-run children's homes may be held in each council's own internal archives. Prior to 1991, however, when a legal requirement was introduced for councils to retain records of children leaving their care, the survival of such records is very variable. Contact details for local authorities in the UK can be found on the website of the Care Leavers Association (CLA). The CLA also provides guidance on accessing childhood care files, which are normally only open to the individuals they relate to.
Locating local authority records has been complicated by the various local government reorganizations that have taken place in recent times, such as the abolition of the London County Council in 1965, and the major nationwide restructuring in 1974 in which many administrative areas were created, amended or eliminated.
Older records may sometimes be placed with the relevant county or borough record office. Many of these repositories have online catalogues of their holdings and also contribute to the National Archives' Discovery database. Note that records containing personal data usually have access closed for a period of fifty years or more.
Older material relating to East Riding of Yorkshire Council homes may exist at:
- East Riding of Yorkshire Archives and Local Studies, The Treasure House, Champney Road, Beverley HU17 9BA .
- York City Archives, York Explore Centre, Museum Street, York YO1 7DS.
Some records relating to council-run homes, for example inspection reports (though not resident lists etc.), are held by The National Archives (TNA). A closure period may apply to these records.
- Higginbotham, Peter Children's Homes: A History of Institutional Care for Britain s Young (2017, Pen & Sword)
- Urquhart, Gloria (2020) Nobody's Child: The True Story of Growing up in a Yorkshire Children's Home
- Cooke, Allan Institutionalized in a Children's Home: Skellow Hall 1950-1963 — a true story of a child and children in a home (2012, Authorhouse)
- Cummings, Les Forgotten: The Heartrending Story of Life in a Children's Home
- Limbrick, Gudrun The Children of the Homes: a century of Erdington Cottage Homes
Except where indicated, this page () © Peter Higginbotham. Contents may not be reproduced without permission.