Ancestry UK

Thornham / Henniker Memorial Home for Boys, Gislingham, Eye, Suffolk

In 1870-1, a cottage hospital was erected at at Mellis Road, Gislingham, near Eye. The cost of the establishment was funded by Lord Henniker (John Henniker-Major) — local land-owner, MP, first chairman of East Suffolk County Council and Lord-in-Waiting to Queen Victoria. Thornham Memorial Cottage Hospital, as it was known, commemorated Lord Henniker's late father and the family home, Thornham Hall.

The hospital appears not to have received sufficient use to justify its continuation and in 1891 the premises were donated to the Waifs and Strays Society, and became known as the Thornham Memorial Home for Boys. In around 1900, however, the establishment was renamed the Henniker Memorial Home, commemorating its benefactor. The home could accommodate up to nine boys aged from 6 to 12 years.

The home closed in 1901, at which date the matron was Miss Annie Cooke, assisted by her sister Elizabeth.


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