National Trust Day Visit to The Workhouse at Southwell
Sunday 5th July 2020
Please note: Southwell Workhouse trip is now going to be rearranged for a later date as we see cannot see the National Trust will be opening its gates before the July date

Ken Clayton has arranged a group visit to The Workshouse in Southwell in Nottinghamshire.
Built in 1824, The Workhouse is the best preserved example of the hundreds of workhouses built across the country. The system implemented here was developed by the Reverend John T. Becher and George Nicholls whose ideas shaped the way in which the poor were treated during the 19th century.

Becher's idea was for local parishes to combine funds and build a workhouse to house the destitute rather than each parish supporting individuals with food, fuel and clothing. Up to 158 inmates at a time, from 62 parishes, entered this building as a last resort. Becher's view was that workhouses should be a 'deterrent' to ensure that only the truly destitute would submit themselves to such a harsh regime.

It was also intended to achieve a 'moral' improvement, with the poor providing for themselves if at all possible. However, children and the 'old and infirm' would be treated tenderly.

With the advent of the modern welfare system in 1948, the building's use changed, providing temporary homeless accommodation until 1976. It was mainly used for staff accommodation and storage until the 1980s while the rest of the site became a residential home for the elderly.

No part of the event is timed and it is not a rally or a competitive event. Please avoid driving in convoys as this can cause frustration with other road users. The event is open to members of the V8 Register - MG Car Club and their friends with MGV8s or other MGs.

If you have any special dietary requirements or needs please let the Event Organiser know in advance of your visit.
The Workhouse vegetable garden
It has always played an important role in the lives of inmates, be it labouring in the garden, spreading night soil or harvesting produce. Today, visitors can sample the plentiful supply of vegetables while reflecting on their visit to The Workhouse.
Workhouse garden

How do I join the visit to The Workhouse at Southwell?
To join the visit, contact Ken Clayton and book a place. Please note this Booking Form must be completed and returned to the Organisers of the event.
Download a Booking Form

Timings: Parking and Cafe open from 10.30am.

A group visit with guided tour to be arranged from 11.30am onwards. Further details will be available nearer the time.

National Trust Members: FREE
Non N.T. Members: £12.30 (adults) £6.15 for non-members under 17.

Picnic site available but weather dependant.

Ken Clayton says "we visited several years ago and thoroughly enjoyed our time there. I think the visit will offer a unique insight into life in a workhouse".

Event Organisers
Ken Clayton & Carol Fletcher
07973 899056

Life inside the workhouse
Charles Dickens' Oliver Twist painted a bleak picture of life in the workhouse. Here in this rural workhouse at Southwell, we show that, although harsh and monotonous, conditions for poor people may have been better there than life on the outside.
Life inside the workhouse

Where is The Workhouse at Southwell and how do I get there?
Upton Road
Satnav: NG25 0PT

Directions and a maps: 8 miles south-east of Chesterfield; via A6175. Leave the M1 exit 29 and follow the brown signs. Map

Bookings made by fellow members
Carol Fletcher & Ken Clayton
Lesley Smith & Victor Smith
Mark & Lynn Peters

Updated: 200331
Posted: 191128